Now that you’ve mastered local SEO and it’s working well for you, it’s time to start thinking about the next step in maximizing your reach – hyperlocal SEO. Search engines – and especially Google – are always evolving in an effort to make search results more relevant to their users. That’s why optimizing even further can benefit you substantially.
Since Google got its start more than two decades ago, it’s had one primary goal – to deliver the most accurate search results possible to its users. Over the years, Google has adapted its algorithms in such a way that the definition of what is relevant (and what isn’t) continues to change. Gone are the days of simply inserting a few keywords to climb the ranks; these days, you need outstanding content, superb backlinks, and content that appeals to consumers at more than just the local level. These days, you need hyperlocal SEO to improve your rankings.
Local vs. Hyperlocal
If you have a brick-and-mortar shop, or if your business is service-based, then you’ll need to make sure that you’re appealing to people locally. Google is certainly getting smarter, and it knows that if a user types in “get a haircut”, that person isn’t going to fly across the country for a trim. Local SEO was once all you needed to bridge that gap. When the user would type “haircut in Boston”, Google could show that user a list of Boston-area barbers based on business location and SEO.
However, with Google’s push to offer even more relevant results, and with more people than ever using their mobile phones to search for products and services via Google, times are still changing. Now, not only does the search engine want to prevent someone from driving across the country for a trim, but it even wants to provide that user with a list of businesses in close proximity to his or her current location. This is even more relevant to the user. Think about it like this: is that user more likely to drive across town for a trim, or is he more likely to visit the closest barber shop with the best ratings? The latter makes more sense, and that’s why hyperlocal SEO is so valuable.
How to Get Started with Hyperlocal SEO
While it’s possible to go into a great deal of depth when it comes to hyperlocal SEO, there are three simple tips you can follow to get the ball rolling and start improving your rankings immediately.
- Include hyperlocal keywords. Rather than keywords like “Boston haircut”, consider a smaller geographical area, such as a neighborhood. “Allston haircut” or “Brighton haircut” is far more relevant.
- Insert your business address. Make sure your exact business address appears on your website several times. Google can find this information and use it to match searchers with your company.
- Provide your name, address, and phone number in multiple directories. Good places to start include Google+, Yellowbook, Yelp, YP, TripAdvisor, and other similar directories. It may seem tedious and time consuming, but the more places you can verify your information, the better.
As Google continues its efforts to be the best search engine available around the world, you can expect further changes in the way it measures the relevancy of your website. Taking steps to incorporate hyperlocal SEO now can make a tremendous difference in your traffic, which will boost your income, as well.