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NOT FOUND IN LOCAL SEARCH?
You serve a local market
• Your products or services are in great demand by your community.
But when they look for you on the web, you don’t show up.
GET FOUND LOCALLY
Understanding how local search works is important if you want to stand out on the web in your geographic area.
YOU WANT YOUR PIZZA LOCAL
Think about it.
When someone is looking for pizza, a haircut or oil change, they are most likely not looking to find a national company ranked globally for the search terms.
• Instead the searcher wants the pizza place or salon just down the road.
Search engines like Google have gotten smart enough to recognize that certain types of searches should return local results to be the most relevant to the searchers.
In this lesson, you’ll discover simple strategies that make it easier for search engines to find you and tap into the local search rankings.
• You’ll determine ways to improve your local visibility with easy-to-implement techniques.
THIS LESSON’S OBJECTIVES
Over the course of this lesson you’ll:
- Walk through registration with the major directories so you increase your local online presence.
- And discover techniques to improve your web profile for local search.
YOU CAN DO THIS!
Each lesson includes the three styles for adult learners with:
• An Audio File
• A Written Transcript
• And a Practice Guide that gives you “hands-on” training customized to your own business.
LOCAL SEARCH DIRECTORIES
What makes a website show up in a local search?
- One of the ways is to have profiles in local search directories
Listing in numerous directories increases your chance of being picked up when a searcher is looking for a local business.
Let’s look at the three big ones:
GET FOUND BY GOOGLE
First, make sure you are listed in “Google places for business”
- Go to www.google.com/local/add
- Login with your Google account and update your business profile.
You can show your business location and specify the geographic area that you serve either by zip code or within a specified number of miles from your location.
GET FOUND BY YAHOO AND 40 MORE
Next, Yahoo offers a local directory service with both paid subscriptions and a free basic membership.
- Go to listings.local.yahoo.com to sign up for the free or low-cost directory listing.
Yahoo offers a low-cost subscription that gets you in over 40 local search directories as well.
GET FOUND BY BING
Finally, Bing also offers a free local directory listing.
- Go to www.bingplaces.com to sign up and list your business in their local directory.
Now that you’ve discovered how to register your business in the major local search directories, let’s look at what you can do to say “Here I am!” to the search engines.
OPTIMIZE YOUR WEB PAGES
Let’s walk through some simple techniques you can use to improve your web profile for local search.
- Remember in a previous lesson where we talked about how search engines “crawl” the text on web pages looking for information?
- Do your web pages tell the search engines where you are?
You can optimize your local search with these simple changes to your online presence.
5 TIPS FOR LOCAL SEARCH
Here are 5 tips:
1) Make it easy to be found.
- Put your full address in every web page.
- Have more than one address?
- Put them all
The common place is to put addresses in the footer.
But…remember the discussion in a prior lesson about search engines ranking things as more important when they are higher in the pages?
- Addresses are no exception.
- Move’m on up!
- The closer to the top the better
WHAT TOWN ARE YOU IN?
2) Include the name of your city in the text of your web pages.
If you don’t say it, the search engines can’t find it.
- Instead of just “Lucy’s Pizza Palace”
How about “Lucy’s Pizza Palace-the best pizza in Denver Colorado…just ask our happy customers.”
DON’T FORGET YOUR KEYWORDS
3) Include important keywords in your “Contact Us” pages.
For example: Instead of just putting “Contact Us” and a form, include keywords such as:
- “Contact Us at Lucy’s Pizza Palace-the only specialty pizza restaurant within walking distance of the City Courthouse Denver Colorado.”
INCLUDE ALL LOCATIONS
4) Do you have multiple locations?
- Consider creating a “Contact Us” page for each location.
Put the full address for each location on the individual “Contact Us” pages.
- Also take this opportunity to include some additional powerful keywords in the text of each page.
DON’T FORGET YOUR MAIN DESCRIPTION
5) Don’t forget to put the city name in your title and description Meta tag.
This is the information that appears after your domain name when your website shows up in the search results.
TIME TO GET REAL!
Now it’s time to go to your Practice Guide and work through improving your local visibility to the search engines with a simple-to-follow checklist for “localizing” your website.
- We have also included the information for the major local directories so you can get registered with them and start getting found on local search.
Now that you’ve taken steps to improve your local profile, we will walk you through a number of pitfalls to avoid when building traffic to your website with our next lesson: “SEO Scams-How to stay out of trouble”