If you ask people to say the first thing that comes to mind when someone says ‘online marketing,’ you can be sure that most people will say SEO, or search engine optimisation.  

However, as is the case with all things in business, SEO has progressed rapidly over the years, and with competition being fierce, companies have had to look for different ways to stand out with their SEO campaign. This is where local SEO, otherwise known as geo-targeting, comes in.

Local SEO has presented SMEs and start-ups with an effective way to maximise their profits while a lot of national businesses have also used this approach to target specific locations.

Local SEO is based on the logic that when customers do not define their geographic needs when using a search engine, the results frustrate them. For example, let’s say you are looking for a cake shop. However, when you do a search, it shows up cake shops located in places ranging from China to Belgium. This is of no use, which is why local SEO is so valuable.

With that being said, let’s take a look at the different reasons why local SEO is a necessity for all businesses today.

Drive targeted traffic to your company

Since local search engine optimisation is based on the generation of more targeted traffic to your company, you are more likely to receive traffic from local people that have the greatest chance of turning into a paying customer. One of the main reasons for high bounce rates today is because of a lack of keyword relevancy. Well, this is something you never have to worry about with local SEO.

Google loves local companies

If there is one reason why you should invest in local SEO, it is because Google loves it. Do you need any other reason? Google has worked hard to ensure that it provides user-friendly results. They view local SEO is very influential in ensuring they meet their customers’ demands.

Local SEO converts searches to purchases

Another reason why you should consider investing in local search engine optimisation is because it will cause you to make purchases. This is not something you need to take our word for. According to Go-Globe, offline purchases come from 78 per cent of local-mobile searches today. This means that for every ten local searches on mobiles, purchases are made from them at least seven of them.

You can expect a great return on your investment

This leads on from the former section where we spoke about making a higher number of purchases. Featuring high conversion rates and low expenses, local SEO is one of the most valuable online marketing methods available today. There are statistics to back this up. Did you know that every one in two consumers that do a local search on their smartphone will visit the store in question within one day? That’s not all. For those using tablets or computers, 34 per cent will visit the store within a day as well.

A great way for SMEs and startup businesses to fight the competition

In commerce, competition is omnipresent. Name any service or product, and you are going to find hundreds if not thousands of competitors in the marketplace. It is impossible for any company to enjoy 100 per cent market monopoly for a lengthy period of time. When it comes to brand loyalty, your most direct threat is the competition. Local SEO gives you a platform to increase your visibility, which helps to strengthen your brand image.

You don’t have to spend a penny

Of course, you can engage the services of a search engine marketing company or an expert online consultant, and if you can afford to do so, this comes highly recommended. However, if you cannot, this does not mean that you cannot make the most of local SEO. There are still plenty of free tools and approaches that you can make the most of until you have the money available to enlist the assistance of an expert.

Remember, it’s not enough on its own…

As you can see, there are many different benefits that are associated with local SEO. However, it is critical to recognise that this is no longer enough on its own. In recent years, Google has made an effort to make its results more user-friendly and user-focused. While local search engine optimisation caters to this, it is not sufficient without user experience.

You need to make sure that your website is not letting down your local SEO efforts. UX has a massive impact on your overall search engine ranking. This means you need a website that is easy to use and provides tons of value in terms of content. It also needs to be quick to load, which requires a fast hosting provider, and it needs to be secure, which requires a reputable online payment processer. You also need to make sure that navigation is seamless. If you do this, and combine it with local SEO, you have the perfect recipe for search engine success.
Hopefully, you now have a better understanding regarding what local SEO is and how it can benefit your business.
From driving targeted traffic to your company to beating the competition, local search engine optimisation presents you with a great way to get ahead. It is especially beneficial for small businesses and SMEs.