Local SEO is a highly effective yet commonly overlooked optimising tool, promoted to assist with local searches, awareness, and reach. Focus is commonly placed on broad SEO activity, when in fact, local SEO helps to target and attract local consumers, followers, and communities through organic efforts
Beneficial for both SME’s and larger companies, local SEO activity provides a clear and consistent online footprint, helps within the customer decision-making process, and assists with maintaining credibility and traction.
Although highly useful, many businesses are still overlooking local SEO, or worse yet, are ineffectively and incorrectly implementing such campaigns. Not only will this waste time, money, and effort, it will diminish the opportunities to profit from local SEO capabilities.
Here are 10 local SEO mistakes and how to avoid them, maintain local SEO campaigns effectively and feasibly, and gain viable results.
Search engines are continuously evolving, providing such capabilities of local targeting and analysis. Make use of local SEO with our guidance here at MaxWeb Solutions.
What Is Local SEO?
With any online business, it’s very common to have both local and national customers and supporters. Generally, widespread SEO activity focuses on the national, to compete against other companies, within the same market.
Here’s where local SEO is different, by providing a platform to compete through the niche of location, convenience, and familiarity, attracting, targeting, and engaging with local demographics.
For example, many companies within the hospitality industry effectively make use of local SEO, by circulating demographically suitable content, keywords, and information, to gain traction, a consistent footprint and credibility. Using search engines, such as Google, will showcase this, from local rankings across directories to online reviews. “Near me” searches help people nearby find local services.
Local SEO is a universal tool, no matter your location, market, or target customer. As long as your demographic is online, implementing effective local SEO techniques will be worthwhile, standing as a significant step within the customer decision-making process.
Many businesses are however overlooking or are incorrectly implementing the small yet impactful techniques of local SEO, resulting in many missed opportunities. Here are 10 local SEO mistakes and how to avoid them, to ensure that local opportunities are consistent for you.
10 Local SEO Mistakes And How To Avoid Them
While it can be easy to make mistakes across specialisms such as SEO, with some guidance and implementation, it can also be easy to avoid them in the future. Here are 10 local SEO mistakes to avoid for effective results.
1. Unsuitable/over-saturated keywords
Keywords are very important throughout SEO as a specialism. It’s vital to use suitable, results-driven and relevant keywords to gain traction and rank highly. One mistake of local SEO is the use of mainstream, broad keywords, or those which are over-saturated for the local area, making it difficult to cut through the noise of content.
Avoiding this mistake will be possible by researching relevant keywords, which both target audience needs/searches, whilst also maintaining geo-specific recognition and trends.
2. A lack of customer reviews
Customer reviews stand firmly as a touchpoint within the decision-making process. They also help to organically communicate with search engines that your offering is valuable and worthwhile to promote locally. Many business owners bypass reviews, by instead plugging away at content creation and general admin. This is a key mistake within local SEO, as reviews are invaluable through decisions and through rankings.
Avoid such ignorance by welcoming and promoting customer reviews, specific to your local service.
3. Inactive on social media
Social media platforms are highly beneficial for local reach, especially when optimised, maintained, and correctly used. Think about how many businesses are recommended across the likes of Facebook each day, due to their location.
Being inactive on social media will close off significant traction, along with feeding poor quality and likely outdated information across online platforms.
Becoming active, engaged and up to date on social media sites will increase the connectivity that local SEO provides.
4. A lack of mobile optimisation
One of the most disruptive 10 local SEO mistakes, which we urge you to avoid, is a lack of optimisation across mobile sites. The majority of searches are now completed across mobile devices, making it impossible to find, explore and engage with your offering when local SEO is lacking.
Avoiding this local SEO mistake will be possible by designing and optimising your website for mobile usability, to ensure that performance can be consistent, feeding into search engines.
5. A lack of or no backlinking
Backlinking is essential across SEO practices, to rank as credible. Business owners do tend to make the mistake of overlooking backlinks, by instead ploughing content onto their own site. While content creation will benefit your website, it will not get your offering out there.
Through local SEO, avoid such mistakes by building quality backlinks through featuring on guest posts, digital PR features and by creating geo-specific content.
6. Unreliable NAPW
Local customers will want to be able to find your bricks and mortar location will want to be able to contact you and will want to be able to engage. Unreliable NAPW (Name, Address, Phone number and Website) will make it impossible for such actions to be completed, one of the 10 local SEO mistakes you’ll want to avoid.
Reliable and consistent use of NAPW will avoid the disconnect of such mistakes, ensuring that your information can be found and engaged with on a local scale.
7. Low-quality content and functionality
Content across all online platforms should be of quality and highly functional to display and manoeuvre around. A key mistake of local SEO is that content is of low quality, is unoptimized and is challenging to view and use.
Creating a quality, relevant, meaningful, informative, optimised, and geo-specific/service-specific written content and imagery will help to avoid this mistake. Although competition may be of a local scale, it’s important to stand out, compete and gain authority through worthwhile content creation.
8. Keyword stuffing
Keyword stuffing is a common mistake within digital marketing, where little strategy is in place throughout SEO. Here’s where relevant keywords may be used, yet they will be over-saturated flooding website content. This will devalue online offerings, even if your tangible offering is of quality, lowering rankings across search engines.
Avoid this common local SEO mistake by completing regular keyword research, whilst carefully following marketing strategies of content creation and positioning.
9. A lack of presence across directories
Online directories are in place to store NAPW information for local businesses. They stand as a useful platform to quickly offer up reliable business information. An effective local SEO strategy is to make use of such directories, by maintaining a consistent presence of accurate information.
Many businesses make the mistake of overlooking directories, by instead relying on their sole website. Yet it’s important to remember that when customers type in service-specific or geo-specific keywords, directories will initially show, overshadowing website presence. This is a benefit of local SEO when used correctly, churning out helpful and promotional information through keyword research.
10. Over extensive reach
SEO as a specialism helps to extend reach. However, when it comes to attracting local attention, strategies must be specific and niche, to reach the correct target audience. A key mistake of local SEO is that an over extensive reach is aimed for. Yet this will be impossible as keywords, content and information will be inconsistent and weakly represented.
Avoiding such mistakes will be possible by setting clear aims of reach through specific local focuses. Ensuring that keywords are relevant, that content will be beneficial for target customers and that information is accurate will help to home in on quality reach.
Above are 10 local SEO mistakes and how to avoid them, providing the ability to gain authority across search engines and customer recommendations/searches. Following our advice will help to make use of the impactful tool of local SEO, offering digital marketing results through local activity.
Contact MaxWeb today
At MaxWeb Solutions, we are a digital marketing agency, offering both advice and services surrounding a wide area of specialisms. We are here to assist with areas such as local SEO, from awareness to strategy.
Reach out to avoid the common mistakes of bypassing or incorrectly using local SEO, easily prevented through strategy and management.
Benefit from local SEO efforts, to stand out locally to both customers and search engines.
Posted on Friday, September 3rd, 2021 in SEO.