Digital marketing is one of the most beneficial ways to promote and grow your business, but choosing the right method can be difficult given the seemingly endless options available. Our free address lookup tool provides quick verification that helps you improve the quality of address information in your database. All of our address verification tools verify details However, one of the most effective tools is also one of the most overlooked: local SEO. As the name suggests, local SEO is just SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) that is tailored towards local searches, such as “plumber near me” or, “Christchurch cafes”.
The best example of local SEO in Christchurch is the little list of businesses that pop up underneath a map of your area when you search for something like ‘plumber near me’. Google responds to the geographic focus of your search term (i.e. the ‘near me’ part) and showcases the most relevant businesses, along with their location in your area, ahead of other search results. Naturally, these businesses are likely to get more clicks and more customers.
How do I get on there? Getting featured at the top of a Google search is a complicated process that takes time, and there is no one way to guarantee it, but luckily there are a lot of simple steps you can take to help your business rank in local searches.
Google My Business: The most important, this is the box of information that shows up when you search for a specific business, and includes their website, address, opening hours, phone number and reviews. Reviews especially are one of the most impactful elements of Google My Business, so make sure you’re asking customers to leave reviews for others to see. Keeping this information up to date and relevant is crucial, as it will help Google feature your business for local searches.
Facebook and local business listings: Google also uses other directories when deciding how to rank your business, which is why it’s important to cover your bases and list widely to build up a high number of backlinks. Having a Facebook page and Google My Business account is a must in 2021, but don’t overlook smaller options and lesser-known directories: your town or city might have a website with a list of local businesses, and registering your details with your local chamber of commerce can be incredibly beneficial.
But why is it important? Because local searches, and the people who are making them, are specifically looking for a business, your business, to spend their money with. According to a 2020 survey, 93% of consumers used the internet to search for local businesses, while 46% of all Google searches are for something in the local area. Amazingly, 88% of consumers will either call or visit a local business within 24 hours of making an online search for them. What this means is that if you’re not focused on local SEO, you’re missing out on customers, plain and simple.
This is even more important in New Zealand, since we have a low population and a large number of small, local businesses. Our small population means that you can’t rely on high volumes of people in order to catch the customers other businesses miss out on, while small businesses account for 97% of all firms within New Zealand, a fact that is reflected in consumer behaviours. More than half of Kiwi consumers (54%) always or often purchase products and services from New Zealand owned and operated small businesses, and want to support local businesses.
Whether you’re a plumber or a mechanic, own a clothing boutique or run a marketing agency, your customers are already looking for you, and local SEO is what helps them find you. Local SEO is basically a shortcut to making sales, and with the right focus and approach it can transform your business. If you’d like to know how we can use SEO to help your business gain traction, feel free to reach out to us for a chat.
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