Top 7 factors that influence your local search rankings in 2019
If you run any sort of local businesses offering services, investing in local SEO could be one of the best you can do for long term inbound leads.
There are some very important factors that will influence the ranking of your website in local search results.
Below is the top six of those factors.
1. Mobile responsiveness
It cannot be overstated how crucial mobile responsiveness is for local SEO. Google estimates around half the searches are made with local intent and you bet most of it are from mobile.
Having a website which is not optimized for mobile leads to instant rejection from the visitors. So, all the efforts you make to bring someone to your website goes a waste.
Also with voice recognition gaining prominence year to year, it is missing out on a significant chunk of traffic if your website is not mobile optimized as the majority of voice searches are from mobile devices.
How to do it?
If your website is built on WordPress, shift to a mobile responsive theme. Most of the modern themes are mobile responsive and should just work fine.
If your website is custom coded by a developer, get it done from them as early as possible.
2. Google my business listing optimization
Creating your business listing in Google my Business is imperative to get your website and business ranked for local search terms.
If you have a Google My Business listing but not claimed yet, it is absolutely vital to do it to improve your local SEO. It is extremely easy to do it just by providing basic information on your business and contact details.
Once the listing is created or claimed, optimize it with accurate information and details of your business. Adding good quality pictures always helps SEO.
Make sure to enter the Name, Address and Phone number of your business correctly without any errors.
3. Google local service ads (lsa)
Google released an ad program specific to local services, named Google Local Service Ads.
So, whenever a local search for a specific service is done, these ads top the results on the first page.
It is essential to go through an approval process to get listed with Google LSA. If you have enough resources for it, LSA is definitely a worthy investment.
4. High-quality Citations
Citations are the equivalent of backlinks when it comes to local SEO.
A citation is a link to your website from any credible source, which could be a social media platform, a local service directory such as Yelp, Yellow pages, etc.
Higher the quality of your referrer, higher the chances of your website earning domain authority and the rankings. Citations also help to get ranked in map listings when it comes to local search.
Be sure to maintain consistency in listing your business name, address and phone number across all the platforms providing a link to your website.
Bing Places for Business and Facebook Places are other high authority sources that must be utilized.
5. BRAND awareness
Google takes brands more seriously than ever before.
With the relentless rise in fake news, an authoritative brand is imperative to dominate search in the next decade.
- Build awareness around your brand across all channels.
- Keep your social media channels active and engaging.
6. VALUABLE CONTENT
Attracting your potential clients with helpful and valuable content will definitely have a huge positive impact on your rankings.
Build detailed tutorials and actionable tips that could be implemented by your target audience. The more value your content provides, the longer the visitor stays on your website thereby helping your rankings go up.
The content length of 750-1400 words is ideal when it comes to local services. Make sure the content is precise that the reader can act on step by step.
7. POSITIVE REVIEWS & REPUTATION
Reviews make or break a local business and it has an impact on rankings as well.
The more positive reviews your business has, the higher the chances for your content to get ranked for.
- Build a system to encourage customers to leave a review for your service. A simple pop-up in your website and a small incentive would turn a loyal customer into an active reviewer of your service.
- Always thank the customers for the positive reviews.
- Respond to negative reviews at all costs. It restores confidence among the dissatisfied customers and prevents damaging the reputation of your business.