Finding the right words to attract your local market is critical, and today I want to share new research from interactive media marketing firm, Trusted!, which shows how using the wrong keywords or key phrases can hurt your local business.
A recent article, titled, “Where Is the Best Place to Put Your Keywords to Get Traffic,” was provided by Trusted!. The report shows that among the most important factors “Where is the Best Local Market?” is now being considered by search engines and strategists to help determine what ads to show when local searches are done online.
Now, I don’t disagree that organic search engine traffic is the best way to bring visitors to your site, but if you’re new to the game, your competitors may be putting your information online and you may not realize that your online competitors are possibly being generated from the very places you want to attract local visitors.
A perfect example is found in the hotel business. If you are all about giving the people a hotel night, you will be doing a great deal of marketing in social networks, maybe even making videos to give yourself an advantage. Consider for a moment that when someone finds your hotel info online, they are using a keyword phrase to find the hotel.
That keyword phrase could be something like “cheap hotel night in the city”. If you have a hotel in a city, you want that business to find your hotel when they are using that keyword phrase to find the city.
So again, if your business has a website, your top priority is online visibility. You must use the right online strategies to be found by your top competitors, and an important step of the process is to satisfy the needs of your local market.
This approach is nothing new. Local businesses have been marketing online for decades, and as any offline business owner will tell you, marketing is one of the most overlooked marketing goals.
We are seeing online marketing take-off faster than ever before, and we expect this trend to continue for years to come. Of course, as a local business, your online marketing plan should address local market concerns, such as getting ranked on Google by local people.
But as we also know, Google’s been updating their algorithms for local marketing rankings, such as Google Places and Google Local, so staying on top of your local SEO can be easier than you once thought.
In case you haven’t noticed, if you search for something on Google, you will now see local search results pop up. Many local businesses have told us that they get many more visitors from Google Places in comparison to Google Organic search. In fact, getting on the first page of Google Places is becoming quite the challenge – and local businesses are falling down on the face of this competition.
There are many possible reasons why local business websites can be underperforming in the race to get to the top of Google’s local search results. I could go through them here, but it’s far better to address these issues than go through all seven of them.
Both Google and local visitors to your website must be looking for a localist. In the animal kingdom, looking for a vet is not the same as looking for a chiropractor. Being able to speak a language that includes not only common phrases, but unique terminology is essential in attracting visitors from the internet.
Local people are using the internet to find a business that serves their neighborhoods. They are not looking for a large national company with thousands of nationwide employees. They want a small company with actual people that are physically there to assist them.
2. LOCAL CONTENT SITES MUST BE AT LEAST SUBDOMAIN OR SUB-DOMAIN OF YOUR MAIN WEBSITE.
If your main website is “business.com”, and a local site is ” beauties.com”, you’ve got to make sure that either you host the website yourself, or you link to it from your main domain.
If you’ve got a century-old website, you’ve got to make sure that it’s not pointed to a country other than yours. If you’ve got a forward-facing database system, like an HTML editor, you’ve got to ensure that it’s identified locally.
3. BUILD A LIST OF LOCAL DIRECTORIES AND OTHER LOCAL SEARCH ENGINES.
Google apps, Yellowpages.com, Ezinearticles.com; other local search engines are virtually useless for local businesses unless you are also on the first two pages of the search engine results for your area.
You can go to each of them and manually upload your website, as well as fill out a keyword form. That said, some of them are free, and some of them you have to pay to list your business.