SEO focusses on ranking your website nationally or globally;
Local SEO focusses on increasing business visibility/ ranking locally based on local area/suburb/postcode.
With Local SEO focusses on all
Local SEO is all about location, location, location. It’s a way to get your products and services in front of your target audience in a specific geographic area. It entails all the nuts and bolts of usual SEO – content, on-page optimisation, keyword research, link building – just with a local focus.
Search engines look for signals in local content, links, social profile pages and profile listings to provide the most relevant local results to the searcher. For example, Local SEO typically focuses on city or town names because people add a city or town name to their search request, e.g. “salons in Sydney”. With a good Local SEO strategy, Google starts associating your business with a certain area, bumping you up the rankings and boosting your profile in the community.
The other thing about local searches is they’re more often highly relevant. Either they focus on a town or city, or things like product availability, opening hours and directions. That’s why Local SEO puts a big focus on directory listings, Google My Business profiles and social media profiles. Your Google My Business location is the number one factor impacting your local search results. No question about it, it must be part of your Local SEO strategy.
Another factor that’s important for Local SEO is citations. This is your name, address and phone number (known as NAP) on other inline listings. There are lots of places where you might want to claim or add your citations, depending on your business. For example, there might be niche directories for tradespeople, salons or childcare centres.
Reviews are also essential for Local SEO. Just make sure they’re good reviews! Send people who have a good experience with your brand to your Google My Business listing. Encourage and incentivise reviews where you can. Good reviews will always help you generate leads and conversions. This is true for companies local and global. Though in particular for Local SEO, reviews will define your success when it comes to ranking with Google.
So when would you use Local SEO versus SEO? You won’t be surprised to learn that Local SEO is mostly (but not exclusively) used for local bricks-and-mortar businesses. We’re not only talking about shops, cafes and restaurants but also services, like plumbers, lawyers and real estate agents. Think about it – if your business has a physical location or wants to appeal to people in a certain geographic area, you want to make sure it pops up in the SERPs when people search for “plumber in Richmond” or “Thai restaurant in Paramatta”.
If your business is online (such as e-commerce), national or even global, the location doesn’t matter so much. Your target audience isn’t limited to a geographic area, so you don’t need a Local SEO campaign.
Doing well in SEO? You will do well in Local SEO. After all, they’re made up of many of the same tactics. So, if you can get SEO right (or you have an agency who is doing a stellar job), your Local SEO will surely succeed too.