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Search engine optimization (SEO) can help local businesses thrive and survive within an increasingly competitive business space.
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Top 7 Reasons why Local Businesses Need SEO
Search engine optimization (SEO) can help local businesses thrive and survive within an increasingly competitive business space. Your consumers are online. So one of the best places for discovering your local business is on the first page of search engine results pages of Google and other search engines. And the best way to ensure your business features in search results is by focusing on local business SEO.
A common misconception among local businesses is that SEO is highly technical and complicated. For this reason, local and small businesses often overlook the importance of SEO for advancing their business. If you haven’t already given your local business the SEO advantage, then consider the following seven reasons why you should start immediately.
1. SEO-driven Traffic Delivers Better Conversion Rate
Potential customers looking for products or services linked to your business already know what they want. So when they do an online search, their intent and needs are precise. Now if your business is optimized for local search results vis-à-vis being listed for those target search words and phrases, then your business will show up for those specific queries. And if potential customers find that your business addresses their needs, they will go ahead and engage with your brand – possibly even end-up making a buying decision.
2. Local SEO can Place you among the Top Listed Search Results
The percentage of people who use search engines, over a variety of devices, is expanding exponentially. As mentioned above, customers are already primed for conversion when they do a specific search. And when they are presented with relevant search results, most customers make a beeline for the top search results. So how do you get your local businesses listed among the top search results in local SERPs? You guessed it – via local SEO. So by focusing on local SEO, not only do you get better visibility in search results, but because your business is listed among the top search results, it translates to brand credibility which will boost sales.
Remember, the higher your business ranks in local SERPs, the greater is your business brand visibility. In turn, this will lead to an increase in high-quality site traffic for your sales funnel.
3. Local SEO is Quantifiable
How do you know your marketing strategies and SEO efforts are making a difference? It is through quantifiable data and insight. SEO tools such as Google Analytics can provide your local business with the necessary data that can help you plan your marketing in such a way to place your business among top search results.
SEO tools allow you to track every stage of your overall SEO marketing. So knowing what works and what is proving to be redundant can help you quickly tweak your marketing and SEO strategies to deliver desired results and rank higher in local SERPs.
4. Local SEO can Deliver a Higher Conversion Rate
Customers would naturally like to engage with local businesses as opposed to a business that is located outside local markets. Also because most customers begin their buying journey online, local businesses that are not optimized for local searches, will miss out on a lot of potential convertible traffic.
If however, your business is optimized for local markets and customers, then your chances of getting a higher number of local leads that are primed for conversion increase giving your business bottom line a boost.
5. Local SEO can Help Grow your Business
One of the most mentionable advantages of local SEO is that not only does it help direct highly convertible traffic to your business, but it also helps you build a robust base of both new and repeat customers.
Building a stream of new and repeat customers of course takes some time and effort. One way to do this is by encouraging your first-time and repeat customers to leave positive reviews and testimonials. You can feature these reviews on different review sites, over your site, and on your social platforms.
New customers who view these reviews and recommendations from other customers, will use them to decide whether they want to engage with your business or even to make a buying decision.
6. Build Brand Credibility and Trust
Building customer trust and brand credibility can prove to be a challenge for most local and small businesses. One major reason for this is that local businesses often operate within market spaces that are populated by big brand names.
Big businesses have the monetary resources to invest in building a brand reputation both via online and offline strategies. A luxury that most small and local businesses lack. This is where local SEO can make a huge difference.
One way of building brand trust and credibility is via online reviews and customer testimonials as mentioned above. But there’s more to building customer trust in your brand.
Potential customers would want to purchase from a business they can trust rather than from an unknown brand. Here again, local SEO can make a difference. With the right local SEO strategies, your business can build a presence in all the right places. If your brand has a robust Google My Business Listing and appears in Google SERPs, and on Maps, it can help build brand credibility and improve visibility for your business among potential customers.
7. Local SEO offers Cost-effective Brand Marketing
Offline and other marketing strategies need heavy and repeat financial investment. The costs can eat into your business revenue.
This is not to say that local SEO does not require investment. However, you can plan and control your SEO marketing budget. Also, while the initial investment in some cases can be substantial, the investment is less compared to other marketing strategies and channels.
Local SEO if done right, can deliver continued marketing benefits and gains in the long run.
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