We’re a few weeks into the new year, but it’s not too late to make a few sales- and marketing-related resolutions. In particular, there are some new leaves you might turn over with regard to your company’s local search presence. Here are just a few brief examples of some good habits that can make your business more easily discoverable by local search engine users.
Local SEO Resolutions for the New Year
1) Overhaul your website.
When’s the last time your business website got a makeover? If your site’s starting to look a bit dated, you may want to consider that 2020 is the year it’s due for a big change. Obviously, you want a site that looks good, with your company’s messaging augmented by all the right graphics, color, and font choices. From an SEO perspective, though, it’s just as important that you have a clear navigational structure, making it intuitive for site visitors to find the information they’re after.
2) Be sure your website is mobile-friendly.
These days, there’s at least a 50 percent chance that the people visiting your website for the first time are doing so from a mobile device. Google’s algorithms are well aware of this and may actually penalize sites that aren’t mobile-ready. Double and triple check to ensure that you have responsive Web design in place, and that your site is easy to access and ready across all browser and device types.
3) Audit your content.
You’re probably familiar with the old SEO saying, content is king. This may be a cliché, but there’s a lot of truth to it; your rankings success hinges on the depth and quality of content you create. Spend some time auditing your website content and looking for:
- Content that’s plagiarized from other sites
- Content that’s repeated across different pages of your website
- Content that’s just not very well-written
- Content that’s too short and skimpy to offer real value
If you notice any of these issues, it may be wise to schedule some content rewrites and revisions.
4) Use the right keywords.
There’s much that could be said about this topic, but here are some general pointers: First, you’ll want to ensure that you’re making a data-driven decision about which keywords truly capture your user intent. Google has a number of tools available, including Google Analytics, that can point you in the right direction. (The enCOMPASS team can also provide you with robust keyword research.) It’s also important that you employ keywords in the right places, including page headings and subheadings. And, be sure that your keywords never prevent you from writing in a way that’s natural and readable.
5) Optimize your images.
Remember that Google doesn’t just crawl text; it also crawls images. You can seize some SEO opportunities by making sure the images used on your website are properly optimized. This means being mindful in the file titles and ALT tags you use for each image.
6) Clean up your code.
Another important step is to review your website code, ensuring that you have good, clean code for the Google spiders to read. Clean code is vital for providing a smooth user experience, and it also ensures that Google has good HTML and XML sitemaps as well as helpful metadata, such as a meta descriptions, titles, and tags.
7) Improve your citations.
A critical aspect of local SEO is having a strong portfolio of citations. When we talk about citations, we’re basically talking about mentions (and preferably backlinks) from relevant and reputable websites, be that the local Chamber of Commerce page or an industry-specific directory. When you work with enCOMPASS Agency, you can take advantage of our citation service, which will help get you the citations you need in all of the most authoritative places. Also be careful that you’re consistently displaying your business NAP data (name, address, phone number) across all your online assets.
8) Make sure you have a Google My Business listing.
It won’t cost you anything to sign up for a Google My Business listing, but the benefits are considerable. Among other things, a Google My Business listing is essential for your company to show up on the Google Map and in highly localized search results. If you already have a Google My Business listing, take some time to ensure that your NAP information, as well as hours of operation, are all accurate and up to date.
9) Encourage reviews.
Google reviews signal to the search engine that your business is legitimate; that people have been interacting with it and value it enough to leave their feedback. Actively encourage your customers and clients to leave reviews and take the time to offer words of gratitude to positive feedback. If you get any bad reviews, try to offer some customer service, setting things right with the customer in question.
These are just a few steps you might take to step up your local search visibility; resolve to make some of these changes in the weeks to come, and if you have any questions at all, we’re here for you. Reach out to enCOMPASS at your convenience.
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