How to Optimise Local SEO Without Breaking the Bank

Emma Grant

Head of SEO

Results-driven Emma heads up our SEO team. A champion of best-practice SEO strategies for search engine success that lasts and delivers best value, Emma’s work focuses on boosting clients’ online visibility with the ultimate goal of increasing sales. Emma applies her extensive skill and experience to create strategies that pay off quickly for faster results. She knows precisely what to do to reduce clients’ paid ad spends for greater profits, and how to boost organic leads for better long term return on investment. After close of business, when she’s not organising exciting travel adventures, you may hear Emma strumming classical guitar tunes or working on her jazz riffs.

Do you run a local business? Then you need to know about local search engine optimisation. But exactly what is Google local SEO and why is it important? And more to the point, how to optimise local SEO, without breaking the bank?

What is google local SEO?

Over 75 per cent of search engine users never scroll past the first page of search results. And if they’re looking for a local business, it’s unlikely they’ll get much further than the Google Maps listings. Whether someone’s on the hunt for a takeaway or a local garden centre, and let’s face it, thousands of people are making these searches every day, if your business doesn’t come in at the top of the local results then you’re just not going to get a look in.

We’ve talked before at length about how SEO helps your business. It creates an improved user experience. It lands you more customers. It increases trust and credibility, and it boosts brand awareness. And it gives you that all-important competitive edge. On a local level, all of this is of incredible importance.

What is Google local SEO and who benefits from it?

Google local SEO is important for any business with a physical location and / or a local audience. It makes it possible to promote your products or services at the very time customers are searching for them.

Local SEO is designed to enhance local presence, increase enquiries and drive visitors to your physical location.

Half of people who use local search will visit a store within one day. So if you’re not coming up in the results, you’re going to miss out on all those potential visits, and all those sales.

So it’s clear how important local SEO is, but what strategies do you need to adopt and, importantly, how can you achieve great results without breaking the bank? Let’s take a look.

How to optimise local SEO on a shoestring budget?

When it comes to SEO tips 2020 has already presented its fair share of tried and tested ideas. But it’s the strategies that work on a budget that we’re most interested in sharing in this post. Here goes.

1.     Claim your FREE Google My Business Listing

Google My Business (GMB) counts for a quarter of local SEO ranking factors. It’s the number one factor when it comes to getting into the Local Pack results, the map box that you see right at the top of the page when you’ve searched for something locally based. Getting into the top three of those listings is the ultimate way to generate new local business and boost sales.

How much does it cost to set up a Google My Business listing? That’s the good bit. It’s totally free. And it’s simple too.

All you need to do to get started is either create or claim your GMB page and then follow the steps provided. Always be sure to verify your listing, again follow the instructions for that.

Google My Business for local SEO

Once you have your free GMB listing there’s plenty you can do to optimise it so it delivers the best possible results for you, giving you the greatest chance of getting into the top three of the Local Pack. We’ve included some helpful insider tips right here.

Cost to set up Google My Business = £0.

2.     Get reviewed

You know yourself when you’re looking for products or services that you rely on reviews to influence your buying decisions. So why should it be any different for your customers?

It costs nothing to ask for reviews and to start building a great review profile. It’s one of the best ways to enhance your SEO ranking with over 15 per cent of local SEO factors connected with reviews.

The Google Maps listings that get into those Local Pack top spots are usually the ones with the most reviews. Ask any digital marketing agency businesses trust to get results and they will tell you that investing time into gaining Google reviews is well worth the effort, and not just because of the local SEO element. Positive reviews also drive conversions!

We’ve included some top practical tips on how to gain reviews here.

Cost to get reviews = £0.

3.     Sort your citations

Almost 11 per cent of local SEO ranking factors are associated with citations. What these are, why they’re so important for local SEO and how to clean them up and get them working for you are all covered in our local citations guide.

In a nutshell, anywhere your business name is mentioned online is classed as a citation. These are usually made up of a Name, Address and Phone Number, otherwise known as NAP. Other information may include a website and email address, a business description and details of services offered.

The trouble with citations is that you probably weren’t responsible for creating most of them. This can lead to inconsistencies which can result in confusion and distrust for customers, which has a negative effect on local SEO. This is why it’s vital to sort your citations. Clean them up and make them consistent.

Cost to clean up citations = £0.

Figment – the digital marketing agency London businesses trust for local SEO

Local SEO is vital if you’re going to compete in a local playing field. There is plenty you can do on a budget to get yourself started with local SEO. But when it’s time to up the stakes and you feel you need to call in expert help, you can rely on Figment as a digital marketing agency businesses trust to get results.

To discuss your local SEO needs you are welcome to get in touch.

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