Search engine optimisation is the process of creating content that users want and interact with. In return, search engines will reward you with rankings if they feel your website and content adequately meet users’ search intent.
Digital marketing involves employing different strategies and tactics, but SEO is one of the most important among them. SEO is categorised into two – national SEO and local SEO.
You should know whether local search strategies or a more elaborate SEO plan suits your business. However, no matter the services or products you offer or even the size of your business, one thing is certain – all businesses can benefit from SEO.
Here we’ll talk about SEO vs Local SEO and the differences between these two so that you can determine which one works for your unique needs.
Let’s get started!
What is SEO?
Also known as organic SEO or national SEO. SEO is the process of using certain keywords and phrases to achieve rankings on search engines targeted at a nationwide reach.
When you type in any keyphrase on Google, the search engine pulls up elements such as snippets that answer your query directly, related images, a box of answers, or shopping results. The results that display for your specific query depend on the available data.
What Are Some Good SEO Strategies?
Effective SEO campaigns require applying a well-thought-out plan to help you increase organic traffic to your website. Here are some of the best traditional SEO strategies proven to deliver results.
What is Domain Authority (DA)?
Domain authority (DA) is a search engine ranking score developed by MOZ, a provider of SEO tools. The score determines how likely a website or specific page is to rank on the search engine result pages (SERPs). The scores range from 1-100, with websites having the highest score more likely to rank higher.
Google and other search engines want to relay reliable information to users. The more authority a domain has, the more credible it appears in the eyes of Google. If Google considers your website unhelpful, you may miss the top results of the SERPs.
Your domain authority largely depends on your online credibility. The main way to build online credibility is through links from other high-authority websites. How well you interlink your pages will also affect your authority.
The age of a domain also affects how Google perceives its authority. Typically, the older a domain is, the higher its authority. It is why most online entrepreneurs prefer buying aged domains instead of starting from scratch.
Proper Keyword Research
Every business struggles with finding relevant keywords to base its content around. The best way to navigate the problem is through research and competitor analysis. What are your competitors writing about? What keywords are they ranking for?
Use platforms such as Google Search Console and Google Keyword Planner to find out what phrases your audiences use to find services or products like yours. You can also use premium SEO tools like Semrush, Frase, SurferSEO, or Ahrefs. Read one of our useful articles to find out all the effective keyword research tools marketers use!
To compete nationally, you also need to determine whether you want to offer your products in certain regions. If you’ve already mapped out where most of your clients come from, you can prioritise these regions over others.
Create Quality Content
Once you have a spreadsheet of keywords you want to optimise your pages for, it’s time to create content around those keywords. Ensure that your content is helpful because you will have a high bounce rate if users don’t find it helpful. Google translates a high bounce rate for unuseful content, and you will get pushed down the SERPs.
Streamline Site Speed, Structure, and Navigation
While site speed is often overlooked during web development and maintenance, it is crucial for ranking on search engines. A slow-loading website will have a negative impact on the user journey. Google recommends that a website should load in under 2 seconds; otherwise, users don’t have the patience to wait longer than that. Factors such as the number of files, size of images, number of plugins, and heavy use of code can affect your site speeds.
You should streamline your site structure so your users have a great experience. You need a menu with clearly labelled categories to help visitors navigate from page to page.
It’s also important to remove all broken links. Otherwise, your audiences may get stranded if a link is unavailable. Since it’s difficult to keep track of all the links, especially with an older website, there are plugins that can help you with that.
Do I Need SEO For My Business?
SEO is ideal for businesses of all sizes and in different niches. Traditional SEO benefits businesses that target customers in a wide geographical area, either globally or nationally. For instance, big companies that offer countrywide services, such as dropshipping, would need to use keyword phrases that capture audiences in different regions.
What is Local SEO?
Local SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) is the process of optimising a website or online presence for local search results. It aims to improve a business’s online visibility for geographically-related searches, such as “restaurants near me” or “plumbers in [city name]”.
Local SEO involves optimising the website’s content, metadata, and technical elements for local search, as well as building local citations and backlinks to establish authority and relevance within the local community. The goal of local SEO is to attract more local customers to a business by ranking higher on search engine results pages (SERPs) for local queries.
If you’re a local business looking to increase foot traffic, sales, and revenue, you should consider investing in local SEO because, according to research, 80% of all local searches convert.
What are the most Popular Local SEO Strategies?
Local SEO employs strategies similar to those applied for national SEO. However, you need to incorporate other tactics to optimise your business for local searches.
Reputation Management with Local SEO
Local business people should focus on their reputation and reviews to attract more business. As part of local search engine optimisation, encourage your customers to leave positive reviews on Google.
Google Business Profile (GBP), Yelp, and social media platforms can help you attract reviews. When ranking websites, Google will consider your GMB reviews and other social media mentions. Local customers will also work with brands with many positive reviews.
People tend to filter out negative reviews before buying a product or using a service. Thus, positive online reviews will not only affect your local search visibility but also influence customers’ buying decisions.
The Role of NAP Citations in Local SEO
Your business name, address, and phone number (NAP) are crucial in local SEO. Search engines like Google will trust businesses that have many listings in online directories. When different listings say the same thing about your brand, such as address and contacts, Google will more likely display this information when people search for services like yours.
Other important aspects for local rankings include operating hours, business category, and URL. All these details should remain consistent across social media platforms, website contact pages, and online directories.
Targeting Local Keywords
You need to know what potential local customers search for so that you can direct all these searches to your business. If you optimise for the right local keywords, you will attract more website traffic, foot traffic to your business, enquiries, and more business.
People searching for products or services in your region have a local intent, and local intent can be explicit or implicit. Explicit searches include a specific word such as ‘Gold Coast’, ‘Brisbane’, or ‘near me’, but implicit searches don’t specify. However, whether specified or not, Google will decode local intent.
Generally, the solutions you offer should form a basis for your seed keywords. Next, you need to identify phrases searchers use to find these solutions in a specific area. After your manual research, you can use SEO tools to help with keyword research. If you’re using a tool like Semrush, filter your results to ‘local pack’ and apply the filter to find local results.
Do I Need Local SEO Strategies for my business?
If your business targets local clients, then local SEO is for you. Some of the businesses in this category include real estate, plumbers, home improvement, health, and legal services.
Differences Between SEO and Local SEO
While businesses requiring SEO target audiences across a wider region, local SEO is aimed at targeting audiences within a particular area. It is essential to build websites that appeal to your target audience.
When conducting keyword research, SEO and local SEO are different. SEO doesn’t use geographically limiting phrases, while local SEO uses certain keywords to capture local searches.
For instance, if you have an SEO agency serving global clients, you use general keywords that users are using to search for your services. A local SEO agency would use words like ‘SEO agency on the Gold Coast’ to attract local traffic and leads.
Web Design & Local Landing Page Design
A website designed for nationwide audiences has a better layout and will appeal to more audiences. A local website is simple, and throughout the pages, it will show the contact details, physical location, and details such as working hours to appeal to local customers.
Competing nationally means you have more competitors, which calls for a well-structured SEO strategy. Local SEO deals with fewer competitors but requires a solid SEO plan to gain top places for local search queries.
SEO Vs Local SEO: Which is Suitable for You?
SEO and local SEO are similar, with the major difference being the target audiences. Depending on the solutions you offer, you can use SEO, local SEO strategies, or both. Generally, businesses with many branches over a wide geographical area can utilise a more elaborate SEO strategy, while local businesses can use local SEO.
Do you need help with your SEO? Get in touch now, and we will find a strategy that works for your business!