What Is Local Search Engine Optimization (Local SEO)?

why focus on localized seo results

If your business is targeting customers and clients in a specific location, local search will allow searches in close proximity to show your business in the results. Local SEO focuses on optimizing your online presence for these search results.

In just a few years, the concept of local search has become even more popular than ever before. Search engines have been designed to provide personalized results to users based on their location. With 77% of smartphone users being driven by local searches, it’s clear that this is a huge factor in modern business.

Local SEO is a great way for any business to branch out their localized customer base. Over half of all local searches looking for local business information are performed on mobile devices. With this information in hand, it’s easy to see why it’s so important to make sure your website is optimized for mobile users.

Not only will Google reward businesses with mobile-friendly websites, but it will also make for a better user experience when customers are searching on the go.

The use of localized landing pages has rapidly increased in popularity due to local SEO, which is just one example of how this form of marketing requires businesses to have their information organized before they can begin marketing their product or service to a particular location. 

It’s important to keep up with changes in this industry as these trends will change the way your customer base views your brand.

local searches in your area

Why Focus On Local SEO

Go to Google, type in a search query with a location attached. You’ll likely see a map with the best results shown. This is where the majority of localized search results click. 

It’s important to have a consistent approach that helps Google understand what your business does, who it serves and why you’re business is the best option for people in the area. 

How do you dominate local search? You need a solid and consistent strategy – like regular SEO, it takes time to show results, but once you see the power of Local SEO, it’s easy to see why many businesses (like your competition) use this strategy.

Most businesses focusing on a local customer can benefit from dominating local search results – get in touch with Easy Mode Media to see how we can help your business.

Why do Businesses fail at Local SEO

There are plenty of reasons why Local SEO might not work for some businesses. 

The first thing to decide is if Local SEO will fit your business.

Do you serve people in a local area? Can people contact you for a service and/or product? If you answered yes to either of those questions, localized search should be a key part of your overall marketing strategy.

The next most common reason for failure, giving up too soon. 

Like regular search engine optimization, local results also take time, though it’s usually much quicker than a full organic SEO campaign to see results, you need to have the expectations of 3-6 months of consistency and implementation of your strategy.

Finally, you might also fail with local SEO if you just don’t have the right strategy in place. Understanding what Google wants to see to gain those top 3 local positions isn’t easy, it takes knowledge and expertise. This comes with experience.

If you’re not sure what makes a customer click your result over the competitions’ – known as Click-Through Rate (CTR) – or what makes your business the go-to authority, you’ll often see a quick ROI by outsourcing this to an expert.

What is Local SEO?

Local Search Statistics

In percentage terms, almost 97% of all local searches are performed through a mobile device. If this is the main channel that your customers are using to find you, then there should be no reason not to optimize your website for their needs.

For local searches, the top pieces of information that are requested are:

  • Name
  • Address
  • Phone Number
  • Images
  • Hours of Operation
  • Customer Reviews. 

When you combine this data with people’s reliance on social proof (the necessity to feel reassured about their purchase), it becomes really clear why these types of search queries have become so popular and crucial to getting consistent clients.

What is Google My Business?

Google My Business, or GMB, is a complete platform business owners can manage the business information and online presence. From contact information, replying to customer reviews and creating posts, you can optimize your business right here.

Google My Business allows you to create and implement a solid strategy for local SEO right on the platform.

Create posts and add images that can be found during search results, reply and even request links via direct link and keep your business services and information up to date.

Having your GMB profile well optimized is the most important step in making sure Google is able and willing to showcase your business in local results.

Why showing up in local search is crucial

Google 3-Pack Statistics

Instead of offering the same results on both desktop and mobile devices, Google displays the “3-pack search results”. The first three spots are taken by the “best”  local listings so it’s important that your business is targeting those areas well.

These 3-pack results take several factors into account, such as the proximity of the searcher, as well as the quality and quantity of reviews for your business.

There are other factors you can incorporate into your strategy, like having suburb-specific landing pages and being listed on local directories.

Local SEO Stats for Mobile Users

95% of local searches are performed through a mobile device and around 70% of those users prefer a business within first three results pages (SERPs). If your company’s website isn’t optimized for mobile users, then most likely it won’t show up in the top 3 results which means no new customers.

Google My Business Statistics can help you find out if your website is mobile-friendly by testing out various devices. One of the most popular tools to use is Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test or look into any errors listed on Google Search Console.

One of the newest features that Google has been testing allows users to get a notification on their mobile devices whenever they’re near a place that matches their search criteria.

Although these alerts are only available in a few countries right now, there has been a tremendous amount of interest from people all over the world and is likely to be implemented in coming updates around the globe.

Local SEO Trends

Customer reviews and social proof in particular are crucial metrics for Local SEO. The fact that consumers trust each other more than brand-promoted content is something that businesses must continuously focus on if they want to succeed.

In addition, Google My Business Statistics are becoming increasingly important when it comes to how people interact with local search results.

You don’t even have to be the number one listing for your business category; you simply need to provide customers with a quick answer without having them click through several pages or spend too much time researching what you offer.

If you want to generate more leads from local customers online, it’s absolutely essential that you have at least a basic presence on social media platforms that are popular in your country or region.

How is local SEO different from traditional SEO?

Local SEO statistics refers to the different ways marketers can improve their rankings in search engines when people are looking for businesses nearby. Traditional SEO, on the other hand, is used by businesses who want to maximize their organic visibility online irrespective of where they’re located.

Statistics clearly show that there has been a significant increase in mobile users that more than 50% of all searches will be performed on smartphones and other handheld devices. 

Social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter allow users to share content with millions of others which means that having basic information about your brand displayed on these channels will help improve your local SEO rankings, but is only a small part of an overall SEO strategy.

Click here for a full SEO strategy campaign overview.

Does Local SEO fit into your marketing strategy?

For many entrepreneurs and small business owners, not using (or at least testing) these proven marketing tactics can them dearly over the next few years.

This is why it’s essential to adopt a proactive approach towards improving your local SEO signals as soon as possible to ensure that you’re generating more leads from people who are already interested in your products or services.

These local SEO statistics help to show the importance of why showing up in local search results is key to getting consistent business coming from search engines.

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