Every small business owner has come across the term “local SEO” at some point. You might be wondering if local SEO is worth it for your business or not.
The short and simple answer is a resounding “yes!” Just under half of all Google searches (46%) are local searches. These are people who include things like “near me” or “in Liverpool” in their searches.
If almost half of all Google searches are for a local business, how come not everyone is taking advantage of local SEO? Why are people not understanding the importance of this business practice and all the benefits it offers?
Well, many businesses are now getting the message. Here’s why local businesses are taking advantage of SEO in 2023, and why you should be too.
There are several benefits to using local SEO, which all help explain why it’s becoming more important.
What Is Local SEO?
Local SEO refers to optimising your digital presence to draw in customers from local searches, such as if someone was to search for “gym near me.”
Whenever you search for something on Google, chances are that the top of the page is filled with results from Google Maps, often referred to as the snack pack.
The regular organic search results go under the snack pack. If you’re a local business or a small business looking to attract more people to your store, you need to do everything that you can to be included in that snack pack.
Nearly a third of all Google searchers click on something in the snack pack. If found your way into both the snack pack and organic search results, you’d really be taking advantage of local SEO.
It Puts You In Front of Potential Customers
Local business listings offer plenty of opportunities and advertising for small businesses. These listings put your business in front of potential customers and offer the online presence you need for success.
Being online makes it easier for people to find you. If you don’t have a local SEO campaign up and running, you’ll need to compete with every other company in your industry for attention.
Of course, a massive multinational corporation is going to have stronger SEO than you because they have access to more resources and are heavily invested in global SEO.
However, these companies aren’t going to show up in local search results because they don’t care as much about local SEO – and may not have a branch in your city.
With local SEO on your side, you won’t have to fight against huge companies for attention. You’ll have an easier time getting close to potential customers.
Local SEO Is Free
Why should you spend all that money on an advertisement when you can do it for free? It doesn’t cost anything to list your business across Google Places, Yelp, and Google My Business.
Placing an ad costs money, creating an online profile for your business doesn’t. This is one of the major benefits of local SEO. There’s no need to pour thousands of dollars into rigorous SEO.
Local businesses are often small and can’t compete with that kind of money. However, you won’t have to match the money a big corporation can put into SEO when you scale down your approach and focus on local SEO instead.
You Continue to Grow Your Online Presence
Given that your business is listed across local maps and search directories online, you’ve got no idea how much awareness these outlets create for your business.
You’d likely be surprised at how many quotes, inquiries, and orders you get from that visibility.
The extra visibility also means that satisfied customers are more likely to write positive reviews about your store and your products and services.
These reviews contribute even more to your web presence, ultimately increasing traffic, orders, and reviews.
Focusing on local SEO means it’s easier for people to find your business, leave comments and reviews, and mention you across other website.
Word of mouth is the best form of advertising there is, and local SEO improves word of mouth for your business.
90% of Internet Users Check Local Businesses Online First
Everyone knows that people search online to find the things they want. The local market is now catching up to the global market in this regard.
People search for things they need online, even if those things are in their local area. If someone needs to hire a technician to repair their tiles, they check online through Google and Bing first.
It takes just a few words or phrases typed into the browser to get information about all the local businesses that can meet their needs. They choose the one they find most accessible, which could be yours.
Local Searches are the “In” Thing Right Now
Traditional advertising isn’t as useful as it used to be, and the trend is only growing. Most people have more control over the things they want to know.
Television advertising, in particular, has lost importance as people prefer to watch content over the internet. Even when people watch TV, they are more prone to changing the channel during ad breaks or recording programs and skipping through them.
The good news is that local search will always be here. There’s no alternative to searching online for what you need. Your website should be optimised and look good to entice the people who inevitably find you online.
Local SEO continues to be overlooked, but more and more local businesses are waking up to the potential of it. Local SEO offers plenty of benefits and is super simple to implement.
With how much good it can do for your company, there’s no reason to not give it a go. Get in touch today and consider our SEO Liverpool services to learn more about what local SEO can do for you.
Liam is the founder of Liverpool based SEO agency Quirky Digital. He has been ranking websites at the top of Google since 2014 and has a particular focus on link building in competitive niches while taking eCommerce brands to the next level.