Have you tried searching for your business online and not seeing it at the top of the list on Google? Or even on the first page?
If that doesn’t make you sweat bullets, it should. As a small business owner operating in today’s world, you know how crucial search engine optimization (SEO) is for any venture. While getting at the top of the search engine results page requires hard work as well as money, there’s a more manageable way to go about it.
Forty-six percent of Google searches are trying to find local information. Consider the fact that 72 percent of people who did a local search visited a store within five miles. That alone should motivate you to rank first in local search engine results.
Is this is your first time hearing about local SEO? Don’t worry; here’s a quick guide.
What Is Local SEO?
Do you feel that you don’t stand a chance competing for top billing in search results against giants such as Amazon and Walmart?
Put your mind at ease because local SEO is here to help. You can get the top rank locally as a small business by boosting your local search optimization strategy.
Let’s say you typed “furniture store” on a search engine and hit enter. What comes up on top won’t be a store that’s part of a massive chain. Instead, it will prioritize businesses that are close to where you are right now.
The search results typically answer a “what’s near me” intended question. Most people will also add the city where they’re currently at to their Google queries.
Sponsored vs. Local Snack Pack vs. Organic Search Results
Sponsored results often appear at the top of the search results pages. They will have the “Ad” or “Sponsored” label and cost serious money. What follows are the local snack pack and organic results.
The local snack pack results show up in a box containing the top three business listings for a particular query. The organic results are further down. Your local SEO game plan should aim for the highest position of the snack pack and the local organic searches.
Grabbing the top spot of the snack pack and organic results ensures that your business is featured prominently on the first page. The best part is that not every local search page would yield sponsored results. Your small business has a reasonable chance of sitting at the very top of the search results page!
Benefits of Optimizing
Local SEO can boost your online visibility and attract more qualified and targeted traffic. Virtually no one even clicks on the “next” or “page two” of search results. If you want to increase your conversion rates, you should do everything you can to show up on the first page.
Consumers only travel 20 minutes or less to purchase their daily essentials. Optimizing can help local customers find you on the map and bring in more foot traffic to your brick-and-mortar store.
Hiring a local SEO service is also cheaper than paying for sponsored results. If you can find the time, you can even do it yourself.
“If you ain’t first, you’re last.”
This quote from Talladega Nights may be hyperbole for the most part. But not showing up on the first page of search results might as well mean that you’re in the last place. Local SEO is now, more than ever, crucial for your small business to survive and grow.
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