Local SEO is how you put your company on the map in today’s crowded digital landscape?
One of the most common misconceptions that we hear about SEO is that many companies are so focused on “huge numbers” or “going global” that they completely overlook where the real money is — their local market.
Over 40% of all entries into search engines are related to a user’s location or local businesses in their area.
This means that, if you don’t make local SEO a focal point of your digital marketing strategy, you could be missing out on close to half of your target market.
Let’s get into the many benefits of local SEO that businesses should be taking advantage of.
A Quick Look Into the Benefits of Local SEO
- Increased Online Visibility: Local SEO helps businesses appear in the top search results when customers search for businesses “near me.”
- Targeted Audience: Local search allows businesses to target a specific audience within their geographical area.
- Higher Quality Traffic: Since you are targeting a specific audience, the visitors you attract through local search are more likely to be genuinely interested in your products or services.
- Increased Foot Traffic: Local SEO boost maps visibility, ultimately driving more customers to physical stores.
- Trust & Credibility: By optimizing your business for local search, you can provide accurate and up-to-date information about your business, which builds trust with potential customers and fosters stronger relationships.
- Competitive Advantage: By optimizing their online presence for local search, businesses can outrank their competition, attract more local customers, and establish themselves as the go-to option in their area.
- Increased ROI: With its targeted approach, businesses can allocate their resources effectively and focus on attracting customers who are most likely to convert, leading to a higher ROI.
- Streamlined Lead Flow: Consumers heavily rely on local search to find information about local businesses, including contact details, hours of operation, and directions so they can get in touch quickly.
- Influence of Online Reviews: Local SEO helps businesses build a positive online reputation by enhancing social proof signals, which can attract more customers.
- Higher Click-Through Rates: An effective local SEO strategy can place your business in the Local Pack – the top 3 local search results – leading to higher CTR.
- Growing Popularity of Location-Based Keywords: The use of location-based keywords like “near me” and “close by” has become increasingly popular among consumers, making local SEO essential for businesses to appear in relevant searches.
- Encouraging Impulse Buyers: Local SEO helps cater to impulse buyers by providing them with immediate access to information about nearby businesses, encouraging them to visit and make a purchase.
- Mobile-Friendliness and Website Speed: Mobile-friendliness and fast website loading speed are important factors for local search rankings. Optimizing these aspects improves user experience and increases the chances of ranking higher in search results.
- Increased Brand Recognition: Local SEO allows businesses to tap into their local market, increasing brand recognition among the local community and establishing a strong presence.
The 14 Benefits of Local SEO
1. Increased Online Visibility
Customers Are Searching for Businesses “Near Me”
The way people search has changed quite a bit over the last few years. In the early days of the internet, a user was most likely to be sitting at home in front of their desktop when searching for something. Now, people are using mobile devices and looking for a business that’s close by. Think With Google reveals that over a two-year period there was a 500% increase in mobile searches for “near me” that included terms such as “can I buy.” This includes searches such as:
- Someone looking for a certain type of restaurant might search for “pizza near me” or “nearby Thai takeout”
- A search for a dentist or another type of medical professional
- A user who wants to know what gas stations are nearby
- Searching for a nearby salon, beauty parlor, barber & more
A customer looking for a service in your area is much more likely to find you, visit your store, or call your business when you show up in local SERPs. With local SEO, not only are you making your business discoverable to the most relevant demographics, you’re also providing them all of the information they’ll need to find, contact, and visit your storefront in as few actions as possible. It’s really that simple.
2. Local Search Helps You Reach a Target Audience
Google data shows that nearly half of all searches have a local component, meaning the user is including a location mention to narrow results.
And if they aren’t, the location settings on their device will (in most all cases) automatically filter the most relevant results nearby.
Once of the most significant advantages of local search is the ability to target a specific audience within your geographical area.
By using location-specific keywords and optimizing your content, you can attract visitors who are more likely to convert into customers.
This targeted approach allows you to focus your resources on the individuals who are most likely to have a genuine interest in your products or services, resulting in higher conversion rates and a better return on your marketing investment.
3. Local SEO Drives high-value traffic to your website
Local SEO helps you cut through the noise and connect with the right audience, allowing you to make the most of your online presence.
By appearing in local search results, you are reaching customers who are actively looking for businesses like yours in their area.
These visitors are more likely to have a genuine interest in what you offer, leading to higher engagement, longer browsing sessions, and ultimately, increased conversions.
Additionally, the inclusion of proper local search tactics expands your keyword influence, improving exposure and authority for high-value queries that record substantial organic traffic.
4. Increased Foot Traffic
The impact of local SEO on foot traffic extends beyond visibility. When businesses are prominently listed in local search results, it reinforces their convenient location and relevance to customer needs.
Accurate and up-to-date information on platforms like Google Maps, Apple Maps, and Bing Maps makes it easy for potential customers to find the physical location of businesses. Strong visibility on mapping platforms increases the likelihood of attracting customers to the store.
With the rise in mobile usage, local SEO allows businesses to tap into on-the-go searches conducted on smartphones, attracting customers actively seeking immediate solutions nearby.
In fact, close to 90% of consumers who conduct a search for a local business on their mobile devices either make a call to your store or make an in-person visit within 24 hours of that search.
5. Build More Trust & Credibility Among Your Audience
Consumers are flooded with a lot of content from brands every day, usually in advertisements on their social media platforms, email, and Google searches.
One of the clear benefits of local SEO is that it helps build better customer relationships.
For instance, users will have access to consistent and accurate information wherever they interact with you online — and that translates to them seeing you in a favorable light.
Having consistent info across the web not only helps to boost trust and visibility, but is also helps your customers make more educated purchasing decisions.
6. Gain a Stark Advantage Over Local Competitors
Gaining a competitive advantage over competitors through local SEO is an excellent way to increase profits and dominate your local market.
By optimizing your website for local search, you can make sure that your business appears higher in relevant search engine results pages (SERPs) and maps than your competitors.
This enables potential customers to be more likely to find your business first, leading to increased website traffic, customer engagement, sales, and loyalty.
7. Enjoy Higher Returns On Your Investment
Unlike traditional marketing techniques such as print ads and billboards, local SEO is highly targeted and focuses on attracting customers who are already actively searching for the products or services that your business offers.
For instance, consider a local pet store that has been investing in traditional marketing techniques such as flyers, billboards, and newspaper ads for a long time, without seeing any significant increase in sales.
With local SEO, the pet store can optimize its website and online presence to attract more customers who are searching for pet products or services online without having to continually invest in new ads.
This not only lowers the cost to acquire a new customer but acts as a consistent, long-term inbound growth strategy.
8. Streamlined Lead Flow
Another benefit of local SEO is that it provides businesses with a streamlined lead flow.
As consumers increasingly rely on local search to find information about nearby businesses, optimizing their online presence for local search ensures that businesses can easily be found and contacted by potential customers.
By prominently displaying contact details, hours of operation, and directions, businesses make it convenient for customers to get in touch, leading them to a point of sale faster.
This seamless access to essential information helps businesses generate leads and convert them into customers more effectively.
9. Leverage Online Reviews
A significant benefit of local SEO is its ability to influence online reviews and help businesses build a positive online reputation.
Online reviews play a crucial role in today’s consumer decision-making process. When potential customers are searching for local businesses, they often rely on online reviews as a source of information and validation.
Through local SEO efforts, businesses can encourage satisfied customers to leave reviews, increasing their overall review volume and improving their average rating.
10. Higher Click-Through Rates
Local SEO can place a business in the Local Pack, which refers to the top three local search results that are prominently displayed on search engine result pages.
When a business appears in the Local Pack, it enjoys increased visibility and prominence in local search results. This prime positioning makes it more likely that potential customers will click on the business’s listing, resulting in higher CTR.
Users tend to trust and prioritize the businesses listed in the Local Pack, as these are perceived as the most relevant and reliable options for their local search queries.
11. It’s Easier to Rank for Local Search Terms
Anyone with any knowledge of SEO and keyword research is familiar with long-tail keywords.
These are terms that are narrower or less specialized than more popular and competitive keywords. For example, if you have a website in the weight loss niche, it’s easier to rank for “best low carb diets for weight loss” than for “lose weight.”
While many more people are searching for the latter, it’s much more competitive.
Local search terms are actually a type of long-tail keywords. It’s easier to rank for “auto body shop Cleveland” than simply “auto body shop.”
This is true no matter where you’re located but for smaller cities and towns it’s especially easy to rank with local search terms.
12. Capitalize on Impulse Shoppers
A significant benefit of local SEO is its ability to cater to impulse buyers by providing them with immediate access to information about nearby businesses.
Impulse buyers are individuals who make spontaneous purchasing decisions, often driven by a desire for instant gratification.
Local SEO plays a crucial role in capturing the attention and interest of these buyers.
13. Optimized For Mobile
With the increasing use of smartphones and mobile devices, optimizing your website for mobile search is essential for effectively reaching and engaging local customers.
Mobile optimization ensures that your website is user-friendly and responsive on various mobile devices, such as smartphones and tablets. When your website is optimized for mobile, it loads quickly, adjusts to different screen sizes, and provides a seamless browsing experience for mobile users. This is crucial because mobile users often have different search intents and behavior compared to desktop users.
In the context of local SEO, mobile optimization becomes even more important. Local searches are often performed on mobile devices by users who are actively seeking nearby businesses or services. By catering to mobile users and providing a smooth mobile experience, you increase the chances of capturing the attention and interest of local customers.
14. Boost Your Brand Image
Local SEO strategies often involve encouraging and managing customer reviews. Positive reviews from satisfied customers not only establish credibility but also serve as word-of-mouth recommendations.
When potential customers see positive reviews and ratings associated with a business’s name in local search results, it builds trust and enhances brand recognition.
By consistently appearing in local search results, optimizing online listings, and managing customer reviews, businesses can strengthen their brand recognition within the local community.
This increased brand recognition not only helps attract new customers but also fosters loyalty and repeat business from existing customers.
Give your SEO the boost it needs with Direction Local
The benefits of local SEO cannot be overstated for businesses looking to thrive in their local communities. By strategically optimizing their online presence and tailoring their marketing efforts towards local audiences, businesses can reap numerous advantages.
Today’s audiences depend on Google, making local SEO a must for business success. Your goal should be to connect with target customers wherever they are getting their information, and many of them are looking first to local search. Your business will be missing out on significant opportunities to connect with customers in your area if you’re not using local SEO.
Now you know that local SEO is a must for your business to bring in new customers in our everything-digital landscape. Remember that creating the right local SEO approach will still require keyword research, which will enable you to fully understand what your target customers are searching for.
Direction is here when you don’t know where to start. We help your business create an SEO plan that will maximize your marketing budget and connect you with consumers in your area using local SEO best practices. Trust Direction to handle the details when you don’t have the time or resources to do it yourself.
Contact Direction today for more info or to schedule a discovery call.