Why Local Search is Important for Your Firm
For ‘Brick and Mortar’ business, such as a traditional Accountancy firm, I would imagine one of your long term strategies for growth is to drive more clients through your doors (as well as upsells and retention of your existing clients). But how can you become more visible online to reach this goal? This is where Local SEO can be your friend.
Simply relying on word of mouth is great for referrals and can give you some good authority locally providing those leads are relevant, but this can also limit your audience as it is largely dependent on connections. Once these connections run out, there’s an even larger pool of prospective clients nearby that you’re missing out on. Optimising your business for online local searches can help you acquire leads that otherwise would not have heard of your from your past or existing clients.
What is Local Search?
Most businesses aware of digital marketing have heard of the term “SEO”, but “Local SEO”? What’s that? In a nutshell, where SEO focuses on a broader online presence, Local SEO works in a similar if not identical way, but instead focuses on a Local online presence for localised search terms, such as “accountants near me”. Google informed us there that has been a double in “near me” searches and that 76% of people who search on mobile go on to visit a nearby business within a day, so you can see why local visibility is becoming increasingly important.
This is typically what you will see when you use a “near me” search in Google, and these results change depending on where you are.
How can I get visible with Local Search?
Becoming visible in Local search has its fair share of work to start with. However, if this means that someone locally searching for an accountancy firm chooses you over a competitor, then that’s worth it, right?
Typically to set yourself up ready for Local search we recommend you have the following:
- A Google My Business listing for your office (you can also check this is set up through your Google+ account.
- An accurate business address which will make in-person contact within your stated hours
This is the bare minimum you will need to start appearing in a Local Pack. However, we also recommend that you:
- Set up a separate Google My Business listing where you have more than one office..
- Set up a separate contact page for each office location and use this as a targeted local landing page where you can include specific information about each office.
Add your business to Local Directories:
- Look for well respected Local online directories such as Yelp, HotFrog, Bing Places, Central Index and Facebook Business.
- Ensure that all the address information and phone numbers are identical to the relevant office location. Ideally link to the relevant contact page for your office location, particularly if you have more than one office location.
Make sure you ask for Reviews:
- We wrote an article on reviews and their importance a few weeks ago, so make sure you have a read where you’ll learn why you should be asking for online reviews and also how they impact your local search.
Start Your Local SEO strategy now:
For ‘brick and mortar’ businesses, word of mouth is still very important particularly if you are concerned about preserving a well deserved reputation, which most local businesses are. However, in a fast paced digital world online is a crucial part in how businesses are being found. Local searches are becoming more important and if you haven’t started to optimise yourself locally online you can bet some of your competitors have.
The above information should give you a rough overview of what you could be doing right now to broaden your local audience, but if you have any questions, please get in contact using the form below and someone will get back to you.