Local SEO inbound link building

What is Local SEO?

What is Local SEO?

November 26th, 2014 – 25 Comments

local seo 7 packOur Local SEO Plugin has been amongst our most popular plugins for more than three years now. However, we never really highlighted or explained why it is so awesome! Let’s do that right now!

Local SEO basically is the optimization process for the local results in search engines. That means the plugin takes care of your websites visibility in Google Maps and in the so called 7-pack (see picture).

Why is it important to be visible in Google Maps?

It is important for your website to appear in Google Maps because you want people to be able to find your contact details. Perhaps people already know your business, but don’t know the phone number. If you set up your website right, this location data can easily be found through search engines.

More importantly, people often do not know your business yet and are searching globally for terms like “pizza”, “lawyer” or “broker in New York”. Google often shows a Google Map or a 7-pack for these kind of searches, so it’s of great importance that your business is listed there!

What do I need to do?

The first thing you have to do to get your website in Google Maps is to have a physical location for your business. That sounds silly, but this is one of the major requirements to get you listed in search engines. It’s hard to rank on “divorce lawyer boston” if your business isn’t physically located in Boston (even if you provide services there). After you have a physical location of your business you can sign up your business in the search engines: Google, Bing and now even Apple.

The third thing you have to think of is your SEO strategy! Just like regular SEO, Local SEO exists of both onpage and offpage SEO. For onpage SEO it’s important you mention the address of your business on your website in Schema.org format. And not only on your contact page, but it’s also recommended to place it in the header or footer of your website, so it’s visible on every page.

Besides the address itself the title tag is something you really need to look at. According to the Local Search Ranking Factors naming the City and State, besides your keyword, in your page title is the most important thing to do. A good format would be “<your service> <city> <state>”, for example “Shiny Teeth dentist Portland Oregon”. It’s pretty straight forward, but clear and strong! But don’t take this format for granted. Play with it and, even better, test it!

Of course we can help you with this onpage process: the final (and most important thing you have to do) is to get our Local SEO plugin!

For off-page SEO, links from other sites are of course important, but also the so called citations. Citations are just mentions of your business, which don’t even have to contain a link to your website. For example you can get citations from people who review your business (like Hotfrog, Yelp, Tripadvisor etc).

Is that all?

That’s all you have to do! Of course, like many things, this is easier said than done. Just like regular SEO there are a variety of parameters that might differ for each industry. In the next months we’ll post some more articles about Local SEO to dive into more specific topics. If you can’t wait for these posts we’ve already listed a few great resources you can use in the meantime:


25 Responses to What is Local SEO?

  1. san diego hills
    By san diego hills on 7 December, 2014

    thank you Arjan, we love Yoast product.

  2. OvaisXP
    By OvaisXP on 6 December, 2014

    A very good resource for getting started with local SEO. However, it should be noted that this is only the beginning and there’s a lot more in local SEO than submitting to only citation sites.

    Arjan, keep up the good work mate.

  3. taimur
    By taimur on 3 December, 2014

    hoe can you help me to put this website on the first page of Google give me suggestion and also tell me about your services

  4. nirmal
    By nirmal on 3 December, 2014

    I am a search engine optimiser and a developer. As you said, local seo is very important for any business. I totally do agree with your statement and I too have been using your local seo plugin.

  5. Ashish
    By Ashish on 3 December, 2014

    Thanks Arjan for your informative post on Local SEO. Here one can get information on how important the local SEO is….

  6. Roman Prokopchuk
    By Roman Prokopchuk on 1 December, 2014

    Local seo is extremely important for any business with physical locations. Like traditional seo as mentioned the locations are important to highlight on site as well as strengthening the the NAP citations across the web via off site. Anything that simplifies the process in a natural way like the local plugin is very beneficial.

  7. Eli
    By Eli on 30 November, 2014

    Thanks for this post, Arjan, and thanks for reminding me to take care of my Google listing.
    I don’t suppose you can answer this question but Google makes themselves so difficult to get a hold of that I’m just going to put this out there.
    My office is in a rural town that does not receive mail delivery so I have a PO box, but Google won’t allow me to list my address with a PO box, they want the physical address. I usually list the physical address followed by the PO box number but Google won’t let me do that because it recognizes that there’s a PO box in there. So I can’t get the confirmation they usually send in the mail and so I’m not listed on the map. I feel like my entire existence is being negated by Google :(

  8. moving van London
    By moving van London on 29 November, 2014

    i will try to use so local i think it will really help my business thanks

  9. Naomi
    By Naomi on 29 November, 2014

    Hello, I work from home and do not want my home address published. Is there a work around for this?
    Thanks

  10. Erwin
    By Erwin on 28 November, 2014

    Just wondering. I’m working with vcard and schema.org at the moment for addresses etc. You’re mentioning: “For onpage SEO it’s important you mention the address of your business on your website in Schema.org format.” Why is it you’re using vcard on the Yoast contact page?

    Side question. Would there any benefit to use the both?

    • Arjan Snaterse
      By Arjan Snaterse on 28 November, 2014

      Both methods are supported and indexed by search engines, however it appears that Schema.org has more future than microformats, and since we have to pick one format, we went with Schema.org.

      Using both wouldn’t have any benefit.

  11. nick
    By nick on 27 November, 2014

    Does it allow more than 1 address for businesses with multiple locations?

    • Arjan Snaterse
      By Arjan Snaterse on 27 November, 2014

      Yes, indeed! You can manage as much locations as you want.

  12. Tom
    By Tom on 27 November, 2014

    Thank you for an excellent article. I have a number of local SEO clients but so far only used the Yoast SEO Plugin. It is working well for me but I will look into this plugin.

  13. Al Gomez
    By Al Gomez on 27 November, 2014

    Thanks for the tips, Arjan! But how about directories such as Yelp and Yellow Pages? When users search on Google, often, these directories are among the top 3 to pop up. I believe it helps to be listed there too (along with your advice of a physical address which is VERY important).

  14. nick
    By nick on 27 November, 2014

    Does the Google Maps integration cause any page speed issues? I have a map in the footer of my site and it is the slowest loading element on the site.

    • Arjan Snaterse
      By Arjan Snaterse on 27 November, 2014

      The Google Maps is loaded via Javascript after DOM is ready, so it should not affect the “Dom document complete” speed itself.

      • nick
        By nick on 27 November, 2014

        Thanks for the info Arjan!

  15. Abdur
    By Abdur on 26 November, 2014

    Thank you very much.

    Now I know what it is local seo and it is easily done by using your plugin.

  16. The Bird Marketing
    By The Bird Marketing on 26 November, 2014

    Thanks Arjan! What would you say is the highlight (or highlights) of the Local SEO plug-in?

    Our office loves your products :)

    • Arjan Snaterse
      By Arjan Snaterse on 26 November, 2014

      The highlights would be definitely all the Schema.org markup and presence of the Geo Sitemap and KML file.

      Besides that we offer an easy solution for displaying Google Maps, route calculation and display of opening hours.

      Glad to hear you like it :-)

  17. Devin Columbus
    By Devin Columbus on 26 November, 2014

    When using the Genesis Framework, is there a conflict between SEO by Yoast, Local SEO and the built in SEO options that come with the framework? Is there a way to turn off the build in SEO options, or does it even matter?

    • Arjan Snaterse
      By Arjan Snaterse on 26 November, 2014

      No, there shouldn’t be any issues using Genesis.

      Even better: we do have a specific Genesis integration which adds some Schema.org (http://schema.org/ContactPage) markup to your location pages.


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