Local SEO works best when a business and SEO agency work together.
Many local businesses don’t bother with search engine optimization (SEO). They feel it’s too expensive, they don’t know how it works, and besides, they’re small, they don’t need to show up everywhere, just their town and/or areas in their proximity. In their case, they need an SEO agency with local expertise.
Local SEO is what it says, a service for local companies that strives to rank the local business at the top of a local search page and in the map box at the top of the Search Engine Results Page (SERP). Many local SEO firms are good at what they do but they need the business owner’s input and cooperation to get the best results.
The task for your SEO agency is to prove that your business is trustworthy. Trustworthiness and expertise are very important to Google when ranking businesses on a SERP page. Your SEO agency is tasked with proving that your business is worth showing above all the competition. Proof requires content and that requires input from the business. It the SEO agency doesn’t get content from the client, it’s likely they’ll be forced to use generic content. It means content won’t be authentic or full in scope. Google is not impressed with thin content. It doesn’t set the business apart.
What Google wants is to promote real world businesses; ones they can be confident in recommending. The problem is Google only know what they see online. They don’t know what businesses are doing, services they’re offering, happy customers they’re serving, unless it’s reported. If your SEO agency doesn’t know either, it becomes harder for them to prove you are the trustworthy, local business worthy of the top spot.
The kinds of activity Google wants to see require at least some contribution from the business. Otherwise your SEO agency has to fake it, and Google’s getting much wiser to that.
Your agency can’t create your ‘real world’ activity for you.
- They can’t create your news
- They can’t ask your customers for reviews (easily)
- They can’t join trade associations for you
- They can’t win awards for you
- They can’t do charity work for you
- They can’t decide your goals for you
But they can help with these things:
- They can publish your news, accomplishments and recommendations.
- They can help you get reviews from reluctant customers.
- They can recommend which trade associations are most valuable to your SEO efforts.
- They can organize your website’s content for better ranking on the search pages.
- They can help to track your online marketing goals.
The more real-world assets you give your SEO agency, the more they have to feed to Google.
Good local SEO Content includes:
- Images of your premises, products, work completed, staff etc., products if you sell them.
- They don’t have to be long but should be authentic. Be prepared to spend a little money. Videos will help with SEO for sure but they can also lead directly to sales. Plus, they can stand on their own. YouTube is among the most popular search engines on the web.
- Case studies of work completed (we did X for customer Y in town Z and look at the results)!
And remember, local SEO is ongoing. The best results come when the business is engaged throughout the process. The best SEO results occur when the business owner and SEO agency form a long-term partnership to drive results that lead to more sales and bigger profits. If you look upon your local SEO agency as a partner and an investment, good things should occur.