Posted on: May 23, 2020
Written by: Mick Sherry
Is your business wasting money on premium business listings and paid directories? If the answer is yes, you’ve got a problem.
Ask yourself: How often do you use an online directory or the Yellow Pages online to find a local business?
I’m talking about when you’re searching for a local service or contractor. For example:
- Wedding photographers
- Web design services
- It could be anything…any local business.
You’d never visit a local directory website to begin your search for a local service.
Just like 99.9% of internet users these days, you would use a search engine like Google to find a local business who can solve your problem.
The Problem: The Old Way
Local businesses who are inexperienced with digital marketing are wrongly advised to pay for premium online business directory listings. These listings offer no return on investment anymore, the online marketing game has changed.
I’ve seen it too many times.
Some local businesses are paying as much as $300/month ($3600/year) for a Yellow Pages online listing or ad. These ads refer roughly 50-odd clicks back to the business website over 12 months. That is an average of six visits per month for a price tag of $300.
Those 6 clicks cost $50 each!…It’s not a good marketing investment!
The Old Way Is Dead
It’s 2020 and this is the year of the search engine.
All that matters these days are two things:
- The overall quality of your website and;
- Harnessing the power of search engines like Google, Bing and Yahoo through Local SEO.
Get these two ingredients right and new customers will be constantly finding and contacting your business.
Don’t get me wrong. Local directories and business listing websites still have a role to play in 2020, but you shouldn’t be paying fees for a listing becasue the return on investment (ROI) is dismal.
Did you know: Up to 80% of internet users have Google set as the first page they see when they open their web browser.
The Solution: Local SEO
Not doing local Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)? You’re missing out on sales and falling behind your competitors.
It is crucial for your business to rank in Google for local searches relevant to your products and services.
Examples of local search queries:
- emergency plumber coffs harbour
- remedial massage sydney cbd
- tweed heads law firm
- physiotherapy clinic hope island
- small business accountant north brisbane
Why Local SEO Is Important For Your Business
Local people are searching for products and services like yours every day. Many of these people are ready to buy, but there is one problem.
They don’t know your business exists!
This is because your business website isn’t appearing in the Google/Bing/Yahoo search results.
If you don’t have a solid local SEO strategy, your business is unlikely to show up online.
Search Engines Want to Send You New Customers & Sales
The function of a search engine (like Google) is simple. Provide the user with the best and most relevant answer for their search query.
Make your business the best answer with the power of local SEO. Get it done right and you will watch your business grow.
How Local SEO Can Help Your Business
Here are 7 reasons local SEO will help you attract more customers and benefit your bottom line.
- Local search traffic is highly targeted and relevant. 88% of searches for local businesses using a mobile device result in a call or visit within 24 hours. (Source: Nectafy)
- Many website visitors from local SEO are ready to buy. More than 28% of local searches end in an enquiry or sale. (Source: Hubspot)
- Businesses on Page 1 of Google’s local search results succeed. 92% of searchers will pick businesses appearing on the first page of local search results. (Source: SEO Expert)
- Local search traffic has a massive ROI. With local SEO, your product or service is in front of interested customers when they are searching. (Source: Integrated Digital Marketing)
- Everyone is searching locally. 4 out of 5 consumers use search engines to find local information and local business services. (Source: Think with Google)
- Local SEO is inexpensive compared to traditional advertising or other digital marketing tactics. You can get great exposure and achieve results for as little as $600/month. (Source: MS Digital Marketing)
- Search engines will find hyper local customers. Google can pinpoint a user’s location using IP information or GPS data. This is to direct the customer to the closest, most relevant, local business. (Source: Integrated Digital Marketing)
To see the benefit, your business must rank for the right keywords and local search queries.
You can achieve this by doing regular local SEO on your website through an experienced professional.
How To Do Local SEO: The Process
Achieving long lasting results from local SEO can take time, but it is well worth it in the end.
Local SEO is heavily driven by process and strategy. To achieve the best results, you need a holistic SEO strategy for your business website.
Here is a simple overview of the Local SEO process so you can get a better understanding of what is involved and how to conduct a Local SEO campaign.
This involves getting under the hood of your website. The goal is to ensure your website is “crawlable” and “indexable” by search engines.
If search engines can’t find and crawl your website, you will never be able to rank in the searches results.
We diagnose and fix at things like:
- Website architecture
- Internal linking strategy
- Mobile friendliness
- URL structures
- Website loading speed
- Schema microdata
This involves optimising your website’s pages to match local search queries. This includes optimising things like:
- Title Tags
- Meta Description
- Open Graph Tags
- Content Strategy
- Page Hierarchy
- Image optimisation
- Conversion rate optimisation
This involves working on SEO factors that are external to your website. This helps to give your site credibility and relevance in the eyes of a search engine.
- External content
- Google My Business Profile
- Local Citations
- Social Media
Is Local SEO Dead?
No, it is the online directories and traditional ways of advertising that are dead and/or dying. Local SEO is still going strong and is more powerful than ever before when done properly.
If your business can master your local SEO, you’re sure to see a massive increase in leads, sales and revenue. With the way Google and other search engines are going, it is my prediction that Local SEO will become even more important in 2022 and beyond.
Forget Paid Online Directories & Start Doing Local SEO
So, cancel your directory subscriptions and get your business in front of more customers who are ready to buy.
Millions of people (like your potential customers) are using search engines to find local businesses every day.
Isn’t it about time you got your business appearing in the search results?
Local SEO is an effective way to promote your business, products and services online. By using a strategic approach, your business can rank for local search queries and start to grow.
If you’re feeling confused, overwhelmed or are just too busy to take action, you will benefit from a talk with an Australian SEO Consultant like myself.
Let me worry about the website, your local SEO and digital marketing strategy for you while you focus on running your business
This way, you are free to grow your profits while I keep the enquiries and leads flowing in.