Local search has never been more essential. For both mobile and desktop, it’s become one of SEO’s most powerful tools.
Of course, tailoring your content for local audiences has always been important really. But since Google released their local search algorithm in 2014 (nicknamed Pigeon), this has become even more crucial. Pigeon dramatically altered local search results, modifying Google’s interpretation of location cues.
With so much focus on geographic location, customising your website’s content is key to luring in local traffic. To stand out in an increasingly competitive SEO landscape, you need to write for local search.
Before altering your site’s content, you’ll need to come up with an effective keyword strategy. Start by identifying valuable local keyword queries. Some of the keywords you choose to prioritise should contain the name of your suburb or city so that you can hone in on local traffic. Ensuring that any localised terms align with your brand will also help your website’s visibility.
After experimenting with different keywords, you can gradually refine your strategy. Just remember that you should never overdo it with keywords. Trying to cram as many as you can into your copy will look unnatural, and you may wind up getting penalised by Google.
Your website’s copy should remind users of your locality. This can be a little tricky for national brands, but smaller businesses can really take advantage of their location. If your website has a blog, use it to target local traffic by including the occasional reference to where your business is situated. No matter what kind of goods or services you provide, always try to associate yourself with the areas that you work in.
For example, say you own a building company. You could write a blog post suggesting the best suburbs to build within your city, or even your state. This tactic will not only make it easier for local traffic to find you; it can also increase your relevancy and authority in the eyes of your audience.
Unless you can find a way to share your local-optimised copy, it won’t have much of an impact on local search. Leveraging your brand via social media is one of the oldest digital marketing tricks in the book, but it can be extremely effective in local markets.
Whether you prefer to use Facebook, Twitter or another social channel, try to make your content as shareable as possible. Before writing it, ask yourself: Would I want to read this if it popped up in my newsfeed? And is it relevant to my local audience? If you can answer yes to both of these questions, then you’re on the right track.
We know that writing good copy can be hard, even without taking local search into consideration. Despite the effort that’s involved, it’s one of the best things you can do for your website’s visibility. If you’ve got writer’s block, we’ve got plenty of content production tips up our sleeve.