5 Do’s and 5 Don’t of Local SEO & SEM for Businesses

V12 Marketing Concord NH Agency

Search Engines can be a great source of new user traffic for local businesses. But there are so many factors that go into a website’s search ranking, it can be tough to manage. Check out these suggestions from our team to jump-start your SEO efforts.

✅ Do:

Leverage Google My Business, Bing Places

Local listing and reviews tools like Google My Business are great ways to showcase your business in Google. Not only will users be able to leave reviews, you can add products, services, photos, and additional business info. And, devices like Google Home and Alexa often use these pages to share information with people searching by voice.

🚫 Don’t:

Sign up for it and never use it

Google My Business and other local listings like Bing Places are only as good as they get used. If they are never updated, users see this, and it can reflect negatively. Take some time each month to review these items by adding new photos, updating products, replying to reviews, and verifying contact info.

✅ Do:

Create a Google Ads Account & Run a Micro-Campaign

Google Ads does not need to be expensive. And running simple search campaigns can give you insight on how users are searching for solutions related to your business. Start small, and scale as performance indicates. Be creative and be ready to experiment. There’s no one solution for this. You can target branded terms, or service related terms. Such as “Insurance Agent NH” and target specific times and days, cities, or audiences. Usually the more specific the better!

🚫 Don’t:

Set it and forget it

This one is important. Google Ads is not a platform to just let run on its own. It should be managed on a schedule, even if you are only spending $1/day. Without management, ad spend gets wasted, as optimizations are not made. Or worse, it gets forgotten and website links change, leading to traffic to 404’ed pages.

✅ Do:

Reach out to local news, blogs, organizations for shared content and back-link opportunities

Back-links are crucial for SEO growth. These links between websites show Google and search engines that your business or organization is an authority in its particular subject, and that other websites recognize this. You can reach out to local bloggers, other businesses, or vendors to inquire about opportunities to collaborate on content.

🚫 Don’t:

Spam them!

Cold calls are likely best here, as e-mails often get filtered or disregarded as spam. Show your genuine interest in a mutually beneficial relationship with a friendly phone call. If you can’t reach someone, then follow up via email.

✅ Do:

Run an SEO report on a schedule

By having a protocol to measure results and performance, we are more likely to continue with our efforts. SEO is not something that can be perfected over night. It takes time, sometimes years, depending on the competition and size of the site. But with ongoing efforts, and automation, we can make this process easier. Try free solutions like Google Webmaster Tools and Google Analytics to get an initial understanding of your website’s performance.

🚫 Don’t:

Overpay for these services

There are plenty of free options, like Google Webmaster Tools to get insights on SEO performance. Of course, paid solutions like SEMrush, Moz, and RavenTools are fantastic, but when you’re just getting started, there’s no reason to go overboard. Make incremental progress and refine the process over time.

✅ Do:

Update website content, or create a blog

Blogging or sharing company news once per month is a great way to show Google and other search engines that your website is alive and well. You can think of a blog as a pulse for the website. New content often gets shown higher in search results, and consistent new content is even better. This means links, keywords, and images are all getting indexed by Google, and creates more digital real estate with your website’s name on it.

🚫 Don’t:

Create content without a strategy

Think about how searchers may find you. What are they looking for? How are they searching? This can help you tailor content that is both SEO friendly to Google, but also useful to the person. Google ranks content based on its relevance. If users are reaching your content, sticking around, and showing interest, it’s likely that Google (and other search engines) will test ranking your website higher over time.

Did you find these ideas helpful? Let us know on social media!

Or you can contact us for a free consultation, and V12 Marketing can help you get these items running for your project.