When you’re working with SEO at a local level, it can be hard to know if you’re doing things correctly. You might be seeing results from it, but certain mistakes that you don’t know you’re making could be hindering better performance.
That’s why it’s good to know common local SEO mistakes that many professionals make and how to fix them quickly. Here are the 14 most common ones:
1. Keyword Stuffing for Higher Rankings
While some businesses ignore refreshing their keywords on their web content, that mistake pales in comparison with trying to stuff keywords to get a higher ranking on Google. Not only will this not work, but Google will notice and potentially remove your content from ranking entirely.
2. No Page Title Tags
Every page you create has to have a good title with appropriate keywords. This will improve both the chances of you being found through organic searches and improving your ranking.
3. Not Adding Fresh Content
The staler your content gets, the lower your Google ranking will become. Fresh regular content that’s at least 500 words will maintain your SEO ranking. Google’s new algorithm is very receptive to this sort of content and will reward sites that take the time to create new, relevant material.
4. Missing Relevant Categories
If your business offers a variety of services and products, it means you have a better way of being found through searches. This is key when you input your contact and business information into your Google+ pages. Just be sure to list whatever categories you think apply to your business.
5. Not Mentioning Location-Specific Content
If people can’t find you on Google, there’s little chance you will get much traffic. That’s why it’s important to put all your location-based information into your content. People will be able to locate your business on Google Maps, as well as listings of your services, if you include such content in your pages.
6. Missing Contact Information On Your Website
Along with your location, your contact information is also relevant. You don’t need much; just include everything on your “Contact” page, including your business’ name, address, phone, and e-mail. Also make sure that what’s there matches that on your Google+ page.
7. Providing Inconsistent NAP Data
If you don’t update your contact information on your listings, web sites, and social media, the confusion will definitely upset customers that are trying to reach you and, again, hinder your rankings.
8. Not Including Location Data In Images
Images are great for showcasing your business, but a common error is to not embed those images with your business’ location. While the effects of doing so may not always be apparent, it’s important for driving local SEO.
9. No High-Quality, Relevant Links
With the recent news of Google’s new algorithm cracking down on sites using bad or an excessive amount of links, many companies are beginning to not use links at all. However, your business should have some kind of linking plan in mind. Just make sure you use ones that work and will successfully share your content across various online platforms.
10. No Quality Customer Reviews
Customer reviews help your ranking on Google. By offering quality customer service and other incentives to leave one on your site or Google+ page, you’ll see immediate results from your local SEO.
11. Ignoring Social Media
Google’s new agreements with Twitter and other social media are giving new opportunities to drive client traffic. With that in mind, there is no way you can ignore social media any longer, as using and managing it will help you keep your SEO functional.
12. No Google+ Local Listing
We’ve spoken before about Google+ and its extreme importance to local SEO. Google+ can help if you list your business, especially for chain stores if displayed via satellite. Listing each one on Google+ helps drive more client traffic from a variety of locations.
13. Not Tracking Site Traffic With Analytics
The best way to see how you’re doing with your local SEO is via your web site itself–more specifically, with analytics. Analytics will let you see where traffic is coming from, when people visit, how much traffic flow you’re getting, and more. It can mean a lot of reading, but analytics tracking will give you the answers you need.
14. No Mobile-Optimized Web Site
Even with the increase in mobile commerce, many companies haven’t gotten hip to it, especially with their web material online versus mobile formats. They’ve optimized it fine for the former but not for the latter. This is just a loss of opportunities and worth correcting in lieu of how much m-commerce activity is happening today.
It’s only human to make mistakes, but if you’re serious about gaining business from your local SEO, you’ll need to take the time to correct these mistakes. The rewards from the potential client base in your area are too great to ignore.