If you're looking to improve your business' visibility, amplify your brand and find new customers, local SEO can be an effective way to do this. While traditional SEO concentrates on your business' ability to rank nationally or internationally, local SEO focuses on where you rank closer to home.
This makes local SEO a powerful tool for small and medium-sized businesses that offer products or services to a specific town, city, or region. Not entirely convinced of the advantages of local SEO? Over three out of five people carry out a local search on Google, Bing or Yahoo every single day.
Want to know what local SEO is and five reasons why it's important?
If the answer is yes, read on to see how local SEO can give your business the advantage.
Why is local SEO important?
At this point, you're probably wondering what the benefits of local SEO are so you can decide whether to factor it into your budget for the year ahead.
Here are just some of the reasons why local SEO needs to be at the heart of your marketing strategy.
1. Local SEO can put you in front of the right customers
It's important to understand the goal that a user has in mind when typing a query into a search engine. Are they just looking for information, or are they ready to buy? Why is local SEO important when it comes to user intent? Local SEO searches are 80% more likely to convert than non-local searches. Imagine that someone is searching Google for 'coffee shops near me' or 'laundrettes near X'. Chances are they are out and about on their mobile phone and ready to visit you!
By focusing on local SEO, you can target the prospective customers who want to buy from you right now, rather than the people who are only thinking about it.
2. The effects of local SEO can last for years
Marketing channels like pay-per-click advertising can get you to the top of the search engines straight away. However, the problem is, as soon as you stop paying, you're back to square one.
Why is local SEO important for long-lasting success?
While local SEO won't get you sales overnight, it will continue to bring in new business for years to come. By creating high-quality content that prospective customers want to visit, and members of your local community want to link to, you're building up your credibility and authority.
3. Local SEO is a cost-effective way of finding new business
Search engine optimisation is one of the most cost-effective marketing strategies around. As you're focusing on the keywords that will bring you the most return on investment, you can target prospective customers with laser precision. According to HubSpot, leads generated by inbound marketing strategies like local SEO cost an average of 61% less than those generated by outbound marketing strategies like cold calling.
Even the smallest microbusinesses with minimal marketing budgets can use local SEO to their advantage. If you're one of the 36% of small businesses that don't have a website, you can still benefit from local SEO. You can use local SEO to raise your profile on other websites and directories, as well as take advantage of a Google Business profile to boost your search engine presence. 60% of smartphone users have contacted a business directly using a Google Business profile, making it a quick and easy way to boost your local SEO.
4. Local SEO can help beat the competition
More and more businesses are being established than ever before. In the UK alone, over 810,000 new companies launched in 2021.
This means that you've got a lot of competition when it comes to getting prospective customers' attention.
Why is local SEO important when it comes to the competition?
A high-quality, well-researched local SEO campaign can help you identify your rivals and any potential weaknesses they have. By monitoring their search engine results over time, you've got a better chance of a higher ranking. Given that three out of four people don't go past the first page of Google search results, the higher your business can rank, the better.
More people want to buy local than ever before
Shopping locally not only helps boost the local economy but makes the planet a greener, more sustainable place to live. People are now willing to shop locally even if they must pay a little more to do so.
What does this mean for your business? It means you've got a captive audience that wants to buy your products and services.
You just need to make it as easy as possible for them to find you, which is where local SEO can come into play.
Why should I opt for local SEO services?
In this article, we've asked the question 'why is local SEO important?' and looked at the value of local SEO for small businesses. In summary, here is why local SEO is important for small businesses.
- It can find you customers that are ready to buy
- When done right, the effects of local SEO will last a long time
- It's cost-effective and works for the smallest of businesses
- It can help you identify and outrank rival businesses
- It puts you in touch with people that want to shop locally
Hopefully, you now have more of an insight into the advantages of local SEO and how you can use it to amplify your product and service offering.
If you don't have an in-house marketing team or don't have the time to carry out local SEO yourself, outsourcing your local SEO can lead to a worthwhile return on investment. Two out of five SMEs outsource all or some of their local SEO work to agencies and freelancers.
A good agency will work with you to optimise your search engine presence and focus on the keywords that will bring you the right results.
If you'd like to know more about local SEO and how you can use it to grow your business, Bubblegum Search can help.
Copyright 2022. Featured post made possible by Marketing Donut expert Matt Cayless, director at Bubblegum Search. Matt is a digital marketing expert having worked on campaigns for some of the world’s biggest brands. He has a passion for helping small and medium-sized businesses grow online. Follow him on Twitter or LinkedIn.