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Getting Ahead in Local Search Results ~ Elan Creative
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Getting Ahead in Local Search Results

google business listings

FREE local Google business listings

Did you know that amongst all the latest updates and improvements, that Google are also targeting the improvement of local search results? That means if you’re a business that offers a local service like a solicitor, dentist, gardener, estate agent etc then you really need to start taking notice of how to get ahead in local search results.

There are a variety of techniques you can use to get ahead in the local search results and we’ve listed a few of the most popular, easiest techniques for you here:

Paid Listings

Of course you can take the fastest and easiest route to achieving great visibility in local listings by using Google Adwords’ geographical targeting. Using geo targeting your ads only display in search results within your area, so you’re only paying to advertise to local people. This can be extremely affective and offer a good ROI depending on the level of competition and assuming you’ve done your keyword research, and you continually optimise your Adwords campaign to lower costs and increase effectiveness.

Specify Your Target Area in Google Webmaster Tools

Since 2012 it’s been possible to let Google know which geographical area that your website and business wants to target. You’ll have to register your website along with your website sitemap here: Webmaster Tools. Your site will then be given more relevance in the appropriate country e.g. more relevance on google.co.uk

Use Google Business Listings

Register your business for FREE in Google listings and you’ll get a special formatted place at the top of the search results. This includes a marker pin to show where you are in Google Maps.

Register here to list your business:

In the UK: Places for Business UK

In the USA: Places for Business USA

In The Netherlands:  Places for Business NL

Make Your Site Relevant for Local Search

Instead of just mentioning your location on your contact page, you should let your audience see where you are throughout the rest of your website. Consider the following:

  • Include your location in the header area of  your site
    This is helpful to anyone landing on your website because they’ll know at a glace if your business is relevant to them or not
  • Include a page about your service in your area
    This is a great way for the search engines to see that your website is relevant for local listings

Promote Your Site on Local Websites

Instead of just aiming to promote your site via standard business directory listings, forums etc, do some research to find websites local to your business area. There are many forums and news sites dedicated to regional areas and towns and a little research will uncover opportunities for promoting your site and getting some links to it.

Local search is usually much less competitive and it’s generally easier to achieve good search engine rankings. If you use all  of the techniques listed above then you’re already WAY ahead of most of your competitors and you’ll stand a good chance of beating them in the local search results.

 

 

Nina Young About the author

I studied mathematics at university, taught myself software development, honed my skills with multinational companies such as IBM and have set up and sold my own businesses. My perspective covers the all important period when a business moves from small and successful to substantial and market-leading, and my personal experience allows me to provide online solutions that give business leaders mastery of their online presence and control over business development.

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