How To – Local SEO in Simple and Easy Steps

June 29, 2012 by  Filed under: SEO 

How big is the local SEO market in the United States of America, United Kingdom and the European countries that have embraced the success model shown by their neighbors and used it to amass a fair share of the online consumer? The numbers are not to be ignored.

If not astronomical, the number of small and medium businesses in the USA stands at 29.6 million and that in UK at 4.5 million, we think that is big enough to subdue and obscure even the best of businesses amidst those engaging in these procedures. These are what professionals actually do when they talk about optimizing your website for local audience.

1. Get Noticed

Google places, Bing Local, Yell, Yelp and a thousand of similar platforms exist to let you start claiming your due share of online recognition and fame. Creating accounts in these are simple and if you require some visual aid on the matter, YouTube is at your disposal. Here is a video elaborating things about Google Places.

Do not get stuck with Google like it is the only option. Local SEO prizes local listings as long as they are unadulterated and not spammy. Examples of such directories are FourSquare, Yellow Pages, Insider Pages and Yelp.

2. Get Graphically Imaginative

Listings on Google places or on Yahoo or Bing become several time more powerful when you add pictures to it and give viewers something to see and make up their minds. Search engines, particularly the big daddy of all – Google, are trying to impress upon online marketers and businesses that their efforts will bear fruit only if it holds value for a human searcher.

Do not invest heavily on photographic equipments, but never make the mistake of shooting images with a 2 mega-pixel potato! Ask you friend to lend his camera for a day and use it wisely by snapping the greatest attractions of your business.

3. Pump in Lifeblood

Reviews are so important, many besides us are of the view that with genuine reviews, the value of the listing increases manifold. How do you get honest reviews, or any review at all when your customers have better things to do?

The answer is fairly easy. Greed is a basic human emotion that is present in most of us. This is also true for your reviewers. Have something waiting for them at the end of a nice review, such as a big discount or a free offer!

4. Look for Opportunities

Often, pissed off customers drip acid on social forums and discussions boards. Do not despair if you see someone beating the holiness out of your brand, this is indeed an opportunity in disguise. The first thing that is in you favor is that the customer is local and he might have left contact details while visiting your shop. Look for phone numbers in local telephone directories and offer the olive branch. If you did make a mistake, say you are willing to make amends. If the review was a false one to malign your reputation, suggest legal action to discipline the rogue reviewer.

If this does not work out, start pitching in your part of the story and let the audience decide. One off instances as such will not cause much harm, but if this was just the tip of the iceberg, you will need professional reputation management services. This is how you can ensure that every negative word is replaced by better and positive words.

Final Touch

Put yourself in your customer’s shoes. Wouldn’t you like extra details such as phone numbers, addresses, hours of operation and discount coupons? Include contact numbers and addresses whenever possible, this will boost your position, not to mention, make your business more approachable.

The author is a Web Copywriter at Blue Sapphire Creations, New Delhi. He has been creating content for 3 years on widely varying topics. His expertise lies in creating interesting pieces that are optimized for search engine indexing, but not at the cost of quality. He can be contacted at

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