Local SEO explained


It’s a question that can consume some business owners, that’s the question of how can a business owner achieve better Google rankings.

It’s not an exaggeration to state that this factor can make or break a business today. Within this article we will provide you with some helpful nuggets of advice. If your company does not have the resources to handle the seo project yourself then why not contact our agency?

Why now is an optimistic moment to discuss local ranking factors?

Our agency likes to keep on top of what’s moving and shaking within the online marketing world, so when Moz published an article detailing experts’ work on local search ranking factors for 2017, well it definitely grabbed our interest.

Coffee and whiteboard markers to hand we began to digest the latest survey, so that we could bring you the latest ranking factors.

Citations, citations you need more citations!

Some agencies are quite simply stuck in the dark ages, refusing to move with the times and stating the same old generic advice. That’s to say for near enough a decade now a lot of agencies would tell clients that they need a mass load of business citations, nothing more, nothing less.

Business citations mean for those of who do not already know, that relevant business information is cited at strategic locations across the internet. The information that needs to be cited is referred to as the NAP information. NAP stands for name, address and phone number of a business.

This way Google, and all the other search engines for that matter, will have confidence in your businesses details (If NAP information is displayed correctly), that is so you stand a much better chance of ranking higher locally.

Interestingly enough the survey published on Moz’s website stated that citations currently only make up 13.31% of the total ranking signal pie. What was also interesting was the suggestion that Google is now preferring more quality citations, so not necessarily quantity, but more quality. So it looks like citations are now going in the same way as backlinks.

So without going overly technical here, basically you still need business citations, they are still important, but aim for quality directories and don’t go mad building citations everywhere and anywhere. There are now much more important ranking signals to focus your efforts upon, they are certainly not the be and end all of local seo anymore.

The less tangible signals are becoming more important so user behaviour, so you have to make sure your website is offering first class information.

What other areas are also important to local seo?

Here’s a list of the other ranking signals that you should focus your efforts upon if you want to rank  better locally.

  • Google My Business
  • On-page SEO
  • Link building (Don’t cheat, these need to be good quality links)
  • Reviews
  • Social
  • Behavioural

Relocating your business or setting up a new business?

Business location is so important to the overall local seo strategy, this means the “proximity of address from the point of search” is now a very important ranking factor.

So this is where the point of this article gets turned totally on its head, that’s to say you may have come to this blog post looking for pointers of how to rank better locally right? Well, here’s why you should slightly adjust your strategy ever so slightly.

Google’s getting more personal, meaning that the search results are now more focused on so many more ranking factors than what they used to be based on. For example, the location of the search is now so important.

If you are searching from the centre of Cardiff, you may therefore get different results than if you were to run the same search from a different area of the same city. So for example if you search for “emergency plumber” you are likely to get different results if you were to move around the same city.

Plus, don’t forget search history, this can also skew the search results, so if you have been visiting a website before you made your current search, well that site may just appear higher now because you have visited it previously.

For example, say you searching for a new car dealership, you may have visited a local car dealer’s website previously, when you run a similar search the same car dealer may pop up again, only now it’s in a higher position organically because you have visited the site before.

So think instead about monitoring relevant traffic, use Google Search Console to monitor time on site, and also traffic flows through particular forms of inbound traffic, i.e paid, organic, direct etc, that’s rather than focusing on what might just be distorted organic rankings. This way you will get a more accurate impression of how well your seo efforts are going. Plus, time on site figures and monitoring the bounce rate will inform you about if you attracting the right traffic that is interested in your business.

So local search engine optimisation sure is getting much more complex.

This is why it’s crucial you partner with a winning digital marketing agency- one that understands how to help your business achieve its online marketing goals, in a white hat way.

How we can help

We are a seo company based within Cardiff. If your business needs to achieve better visibility within Google why not give us a call on: 029 21 760777