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How to Dominate Local Search

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SEO is tough, it is always changing. It is so competitive, especially if it’s organic, and you will hear all sorts of things about search engine optimization. Well, while the above statements are true, the fact is that SEO is essential and in most cases before going regional or international, you have to dominate your local area market. Local SEO remains important even after coming of age as a business. The big question is, do you want the lion share when it comes to local organic search ranks and traffic? If so, here are 5 tips you could use for your local SEO if you want to dominate local search and take your business to the next level.

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1. Utilize Local Structured Data Markups

Structured data markups are also quite important when it comes to dominating local search. These are code extensions that provide search engines with more details about your business, say your product specialties, services offered, number of collected reviews, and such. They are added to the official website’s code. The good thing is that very few businesses have started using these structured or schema markup. It helps search engine spiders to quickly determine what a website is all about at a glance during organic searches. These can also help rank your site higher than your competition. You may want to look for Structured Data Testing Tool, and Google’s Data Highlighter, as some of the useful tools you may need if you’re inexperienced in coding.

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2. About Meta Description Tags

Title tags and meta description tags are as important as other elements of local SEO. Search engines usually display titles and description tag texts in search results. This text actually acts as an advertising element. This being the case, title tags and meta descriptions need to be crafted carefully. Title tags according to Google should be 50-60 characters long whereas meta description tags can be between 160 and 300 characters. It is how well you craft you tags that will make the difference. While remaining short, they should be able to speak out about your business. It should create impact and deliver the intended message. It should compel your audience to click on your link in preference over another one on the search results page.

3. Know the Power of Online Reviews

If you’re yet to realize the grave importance of online customer reviews for your business, it’s about time you get it. Research shows; that before customer chooses to buy a product or service, they rely on the information given by your previous customers. Just like personal recommendations, reviews help improve trust and reputation for your business in the eyes of prospects. Social media platforms and reputation marketing software can help you get, manage, and keep track of online reviews from your customers. You just have to ask for them nicely and be sure to respond to reviews left by customers in a timely manner. In addition to social sites like Facebook, Google My Business is also another great place ensure you seek reviews from. Some useful online reputation marketing software includes Vendasta, Get Five Stars, Trust Pilot, and Reputation Loop.

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4. Claim and Optimize Your Google My Business Page

As much as some consider it a directory, Google my business is quite essential when it comes to local SEO. The same case applies to directories at other search engines, including Bing’s Bing Places for Business. You need to claim your page and optimize it. Claiming your page involves verifying with Google that your business is legitimate and you’re the actual owner. You may also want to work with a local SEO agency to optimize the content in your search engine directory business pages. Optimization also involves providing correct up-to-date information about your business. This may include things such as your business’ description, business category, operational hours, logos, product and service information, and some photos. It’s good to also include addresses clearly depicting the name of your business’ location if you can.

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5. Make Good Use of Online Directories + Citations

About 80 percent of customers are those who use search engines to seek local businesses, products, or services. If your business is listed in major directories online, it has higher chances of appearing in the first few results of local searches by customers. Citations and listings on sites such as Yelp, Citysearch, and Merchant circle are quite crucial. The same case applies to other more local business directories, like LokalBA. If listed consistently with absolute correctness, they boost your business’ exposure and help build a reputation online. Be sure to use your business’ location as one of your keywords when creating descriptions for your business, services, and products. Ensure that the information is consistent across various directories and you might just dominate local search in your area.

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