Local SEO Checklist: Strategies to Improve Local Rank in 2024
December 27, 2023
What has been updated from the old blog post:
- Introduction updated.
- Screenshots and links added.
- Language modified and keywords added.
Summary: This guide delves into the significance of effective Local SEO strategies and their impact on businesses. Tailored for digital marketers, it offers a comprehensive local SEO checklist to optimize local presence, targeting a neighborhood-specific audience.
Did you know that 28% of local searches result in purchases? That’s a pool of potential customers for your business waiting to be tapped into. However, without a well-structured local strategy, businesses risk losing out on these valuable conversions.
Drawing from our 17 years of expertise in Local SEO, we’ve compiled a curated list of Local SEO checklists. This comprehensive guide is designed to optimize your local presence and make your business truly compelling to your neighborhood audience.
13 Points To Tick For A Successful Local SEO Strategy
1. Claim and optimize your Google Business Profile
Your GBP (formerly known as GMB) profile is the foundation of your local SEO strategy. This free tool empowers businesses to manage their online presence on Google, including Search and Maps. By claiming your GMB profile, you can ensure the accuracy of your business information and its visibility in local search results.
It is crucial to complete all the details required in the GBP listing, including business name, address, phone number, website, and operating hours. Additionally, you can enrich your listing with high-quality photos to encourage customers to leave reviews and maintain an active presence by regularly updating your profile with fresh content like posts and events.
Some tips to optimize your GMB profile:
- Ensure that your business name, address, and phone number (NAP) are accurate and consistent across all directories.
- Add engaging photos and videos of your business, products, and services to attract more clicks and visits to your website.
- Keep your operating hours up-to-date to have clear communication with potential customers.
- Monitor and respond to customer reviews to showcase your commitment to customer satisfaction.
2. Focus on local keywords
To improve your local search rankings, one key checklist point is to focus on local keywords. Local keywords are search terms that include a specific location, such as “best coffee shop in Los Angeles.” By incorporating these keywords into your website’s content, meta tags, and page titles, you can improve your local search rankings and attract more local customers.
Here’s how you can identify relevant local search terms:
- Use Google’s Keyword Planner to find local keywords related to your industry or location.
- Analyze your competitors’ websites to see what keywords they’re targeting.
- Use location-specific terms in your content, such as city names, neighborhoods, and landmarks.
You can also create location-specific pages for each physical business location, mentioning local landmarks and neighborhoods in the content. Businesses can also utilize schema markup to improve search engine comprehension of your website’s local relevance. What schema markup you may ask?
That’s covered in the next section.
3. Use schema markup
Schema markup is a code that you can add to your website to provide search engines with more information about your business, such as your address, phone number, and reviews.
By using schema markup, you can improve your search visibility and attract more local customers.
Here are some tips for using schema markup:
To optimize your local SEO and target local customers effectively, incorporating location-based keywords in your Google Ads campaigns is essential. Incorporate local keywords into your ad copy, mentioning your city or neighborhood name.
Additionally, utilize location extensions to display your business’s physical location and phone number in your ads. We understand that these technicalities can be a little overwhelming. To help you out, we recommend watching this schema markup tutorial video for better understanding.
4. Build local citations
Another checklist that is an essential part of local SEO strategy is building local citations. Local citations are online mentions of your business on directories, such as Yelp, Yellow Pages, and other niche directories related to your industry or location. Consistent citations build trust and credibility with search engines, leading to improved rankings.
Improving your local SEO can be achieved effectively by building local citations and directories. It is essential to list your business on reputable platforms like Yelp, TripAdvisor, and Yellowpages, ensuring accurate and consistent business information across all platforms. Regularly monitoring your citations and updating them as needed will further boost your local SEO efforts.
Here are some tips on building local citations:
- Ensure that your NAP information is consistent across all directories.
- Claim and optimize your listings on popular directories like Yelp and Yellow Pages.
- Identify niche directories related to your industry or location and create listings on them.
5. Get backlinks from local sources
Backlinks are links from other websites that point to your website. They’re an essential ranking factor for search engines because they signal your business’s prominence and relevance. Getting backlinks from local sources can enhance your local SEO efforts.
Here are some tips to get backlinks from local sources:
- Partner with other local businesses to exchange backlinks.
- Contribute guest posts to local blogs and include links to your website.
- Secure mentions from local media outlets by pitching your business to reporters.
One of the key elements in local SEO is obtaining positive online reviews. Actively encourage customers to leave reviews on platforms like Google Business Profile, Yelp, and Facebook, while also promptly addressing any negative feedback. Utilize reviews as an opportunity to enhance your business’s products and services.
6. Generate reviews from customers
Customer reviews are critical for every business. But for local SEO it becomes extremely paramount because they provide social proof of a business. Positive reviews can improve your rankings and attract more customers, while negative reviews can harm your reputation. Encouraging reviews from customers and responding to feedback can help you build trust and loyalty with your audience.
Here are some tips to generate reviews from customers:
- Ask satisfied customers to leave a review on your GBP profile, social media pages, and other online platforms.
- Make it easy for customers to leave a review by including links to your review pages on your website and email signature.
- Respond promptly and professionally to all reviews, whether positive or negative.
Crafting blog posts, videos, and infographics tailored to your business’s location and target audience proves impactful. Incorporate local keywords and hashtags to boost your content’s visibility, thereby elevating your business’s local online presence and engagement.
7. Create local content
Creating local content is an effective way to engage your local audience and improve your local SEO. Local content is content that’s tailored to the interests and needs of your local audience such as news, events, and stories related to your community. By creating valuable and relevant content, you can attract more local customers and establish your business as a trusted authority in your industry.
Here are some tips to create local content:
- Research to identify local topics and trends related to your industry or audience.
- Use local keywords and location-specific terms in your content.
- Publish your content on your website, social media pages, and other online platforms.
8. Optimize your website for mobile
Mobile optimization is an essential local SEO checklist because more and more people are using their mobile devices to search for local businesses. If your website isn’t mobile-friendly, you’ll miss out on potential customers and harm your search rankings.
Here are some tips to optimize your website for mobile:
- Use a responsive design that automatically adjusts to different screen sizes.
- Use readable font sizes and clear call-to-action buttons to make navigation easy on small screens.
- Test your website on different mobile devices to ensure it’s working correctly.
9. Monitor your online presence
Monitoring your online presence is essential for maintaining a positive brand image and addressing any inaccuracies or negative feedback promptly. By staying on top of your online reputation, you can improve your credibility and attract more customers.
Here are some tips to monitor your online presence:
- Set up Google Alerts to track mentions of your business online.
- Monitor your reviews and respond promptly to any feedback.
- Check your business information on directories and social media pages to ensure accuracy.
Additional Read: How to Manage Your Business’s Online Reputation
Set up Google Alerts to track mentions of your business across the web, keep a close eye on customer reviews, and regularly verify your business information on directories and social media pages to ensure accuracy. By actively monitoring your online reputation, you can maintain a strong and favorable brand identity in the digital landscape.
10. Use social media to promote your business
Social media is an effective way to promote your business and engage with your local audience. By creating and sharing valuable content on social media, you can attract more followers, build brand awareness, and drive more traffic to your website.
Here are some tips for using social media for local SEO:
- Choose the right social media platforms for your business and audience.
- Create and share valuable content, such as blog posts, videos, and images.
- Use local hashtags and location tags to reach more local customers.
Leveraging social media to promote your business effectively engages your local audience and boosts website traffic. Optimize results by selecting the appropriate social media platforms for your business and target audience. Share valuable content regularly and utilize local hashtags and location tags to expand your reach among local customers.
Social media has both advantages and disadvantages. So be mindful of the practices while promoting your online business.
11. Implement a local link-building strategy
Link-building is an essential component of any SEO strategy, but it’s especially important for local SEO. By getting backlinks from other local websites, you can improve your local search rankings and establish your business as an authority in your community.
Here are some tips for implementing a local link-building strategy:
- Reach out to local bloggers and influencers to request backlinks.
- Sponsor local events or charities and request a backlink in return.
- Create valuable content that other local websites will want to link to.
Key steps include contacting local bloggers and influencers for backlinks, sponsoring local events or charities requesting reciprocal backlinks, and creating valuable content that other local websites will be eager to link to. These efforts contribute significantly to improving your business’s local online presence and visibility.
12. Optimize your website’s loading speed
Website loading speed is a critical factor for both user experience and SEO. If your website takes too long to load, users will likely leave and go to a competitor’s site. Moreover, search engines consider website loading speed when ranking websites.
For local SEO, optimizing your website’s loading speed is essential. Slow-loading sites can cause a high bounce rate, adversely affecting search rankings. To enhance loading speed, compress images, minify code, and implement a content delivery network (CDN). Consistently monitor your site’s speed using tools like Google PageSpeed Insights and GTmetrix.
Tips to optimize your site’s loading speed:
- Use a content delivery network (CDN) to improve your website’s loading speed.
- Optimize images and videos to reduce their file size.
- Minimize HTTP requests by removing unnecessary plugins and scripts.
13. Track and analyze your local SEO efforts
Finally, it’s essential to track and analyze your local SEO efforts to understand what’s working and what’s not. By monitoring your website traffic, rankings, and other metrics, you can identify opportunities for improvement and adjust your strategy accordingly.
Here’s how you can track and analyze your local SEO efforts:
- Use Google Analytics to track your website traffic and user behavior.
- Monitor your search rankings for relevant local keywords.
- Track your online reviews and reputation across different platforms.
This guide on local SEO checklist offers a powerful means for businesses to attract local customers and boost their presence in the market. By optimizing Google Business Profile, generating compelling local content, building citations, and securing positive reviews, businesses can strengthen their visibility in local search results.
If you’re not sure how to implement these tips, hiring a local SEO expert can further streamline these efforts.
Contact us today to learn more about our local SEO services.