Established brands wishing to jump-start their local brand awareness have a multitude of local marketing tactics and resources at their disposal. At UpCity, our local SEO solution relies heavily on local citations and optimization, and for good reason: to connect with the customers you want walking through your door, you need to be there when and where they’re looking for you.
We’ve put together the top ten local marketing tactics a business should do to improve their visibility in local search, below.
- Create and/or claim and verify your Google My Business Page. Feed your business information directly to Google, and give your customers an opportunity to call, navigate to, and review your business all in one place.
- Put your business on Google Business View. Offer your customers a virtual tour of your location. If you have new facilities, updated design, or simply want to let prospective customers get a closer look at the premises, this is a great tool to build awareness and credibility as a local business.
- Update your website. Make sure that the areas you serve are reflected in your website copy and meta data on relevant pages. If you have different offerings or goals for traffic from given local areas, for example, create landing pages targeted to specific conversion types and searches.
- Create a quick reference for your company’s key information. Your name, address, hours, website URL, and branding must be consistent on all of your owned media properties, at the very least. Keep these, and any other information (like your products or services, and/or key terms that describe what you do and could help customers find you when they search) together in one place that’s easy to find. This way, anyone who’s creating or working with your local citations will get it right the first time.
- Do a local citation audit. Google and Yelp are two obvious choices, but there are many, many more local review and citation resources your local customers could be using. A resource like Moz’s index of local citation sources by city could be a good place to start building your list of additional places to list your business. (Or, if you don’t have the time to devote to the task, opt for a handy local optimization service instead.)
- Build out your new local listings. Visual elements help grab searchers’ attention and lend credibility to your presence online. Use quality photos of your location, product or service offerings, and even staff (if they agree) to add content and character to your listings.
- Create individual listings for multiple locations. If your business has multiple physical locations, then each one needs a local listing for its address. (This is where tip #4 comes in handy). Branding should be consistent across all listings, though the more information specific to each location that you can include, the better. For example, if you sell different products in different places or provide different services, this would be useful information to provide users.
- Go after those positive reviews. Reviews from real local customers help you build value, credibility, and a good business reputation over time. Add social buttons to your website, email signatures, and anywhere else you can to give users a chance to review you while you’re top-of-mind. And there’s no harm in asking for reviews, either—but be mindful of how (and when) you do it. You want to give happy customers the opportunity to share their experiences, but you certainly don’t want to badger them or make the process any more difficult for them than it should be.
- Get social with other local businesses. If you’re a local business owner, you probably have a good number of connections in your area. Use those to your advantage. Share posts from other businesses in your area, link to content relevant to your target audience, and follow and like them on social media. Remember that when you share anything with your own following, it should be relevant to their interests and provide them with some value, so target businesses that offer something your customers would like.
- Check in on locally segmented visitor data. Once you’ve taken steps one through nine, it’s time to start looking at analytics. Look at who’s accessing your website, what actions they’re taking, and how they use the site—and of course, where they’re coming from. This will tell you a lot about what local searchers are looking for, and how you can serve them moving forward.
Speaking of analytics, we’ll cover the metrics and measures of success that matter most in next week’s post on local marketing, so don’t miss it!