Four SEO Essentials for Local Businesses in 2017
In 2017 the SEO landscape is set to continue to evolve – rich cards, mobile use and cross device browsing will all increases, user choice will grow and big businesses offering same day or one hour delivery on products will become the norm in a world where waiting for products becomes a thing of the past. For local SEO and local businesses, the ever-increasing challenge against bigger corporations seems endless. So, what essentials should you focus on in 2017?
Local Business Listings
In September 2016 Google released an update called Possum – this update was a refinement to all local search and in particular to the ‘three-pack’ local listings we see at the top of a page.
In essence, the idea is to give users more relevant and varied choice when it comes to local search, so the three-pack is updated and prioritise results which do not show in results. Essentially giving users 13 results on the first page and allowing businesses to rank in a three pack if their website is not as strong.
Nature your Google Business profile and you will soon see the benefits of calls direct from the search engine.
Schema tagging is tricky to the untrained eye, but using an SEO agency to build business and location tags, product tags and service options through schema tagging will increase local search relevance.
The use of the tagging sends messages to search engines from behind the content, meaning additional elements can be factored into an organic search result – such as opening times and stock levels.
Mobile First Approaches
Many websites are now built with mobile in mind. The real power however, comes from building a website mobile first with a consideration to how this would work on desktop.
Mobile device use for ‘near me’ and local searches account for 80% of the market, meaning eight in ten users are potentially looking for your business as they literally walk past it.
Websites indexed with a mobile in mind will also see a benefit in desktop rankings as well.
Fix Local Search Profiles
The internet is awash with outdated information.
Track down all of your local search profiles – Yell, Thompson, Checkatrade etc. – and ensure all details are up to date. It is essential these are managed correctly as customers could be going elsewhere if the right information isn’t available.
Next up, start to consider how each of the local profiles can be improved upon and ask customers for reviews. These reviews are a great way to naturally improve the visibility of a site within local communities.