Discover how to harness the potential of ChatGPT for advanced keyword research in SEO with our comprehensive guide.
SEO changes on a regular basis, and at one time, local businesses didn’t really need to know the latest cutting-edge local SEO trends. However today, businesses everywhere are going online and that means customers don’t just want but actively expect to find local businesses in their search engine results. For local business owners, that means working harder to beat their competitors and developing a more in-depth knowledge of how to achieve local SEO success in 2023.
One of the top ways of getting ahead in 2023 with local SEO is by prioritising user experience. Factors such as speed of loading, ease of navigation, and mobile friendliness will all have a major impact on website ranking this year.
To make sure your users are enjoying the best possible experience, there are a few things you can do.
First, get rid of banner and pop-up ads on your website since users really dislike them.
Secondly, make sure your website loads quickly – not only on desktops but on smartphones and tablets too.
Finally, make sure that users can easily find the information they’re looking for when loading your site.
GMB or Google My Business is another vital ranking factor for local SEO this year. Almost half of local businesses receive over 1000 views on their GMB listing every month. That means you need to make sure you’ve set one up and included as many details on your profile as possible.
Over half of Google searches in 2019 resulted in users being able to obtain the information that they were looking for from their search results page so didn’t need to click through to the business website. That means you need to focus on the keywords that will bring users to your site and create engaging and rich website content that users won’t be able to get on their results page. Furthermore, make sure your Google Maps and GMB page are fresh.
Even though zero-click results are increasing, your website still matters. You need it to build up trust with consumers. 56% of all consumers expect your website to be the place where they can find accurate information about your business, so that’s where they’ll go to get contact details, hours, and locations. Since half of consumers have also admitted that they’d be unlikely to use a business with no contact details on their site, it makes sense to ensure you’ve kept this up to date.
More people than ever before are searching for information on mobile devices. Not only that, but Google now indexes new websites with a mobile-first indexing policy. That means you need to ensure your site will be quick to load and easy to navigate on mobile devices. Make sure the font is large enough to see on a small screen and that key information can be found immediately on a mobile.
Voice searches are becoming more common, and when people carry out these searches, they phrase them differently from the way they type them. Think carefully about natural speech when you create web content if you wish to appear in local voice searches.
It has been shown that video content has a 50 times greater chance of landing on a user’s search engine results page, so you should make sure that you don’t overlook its importance. Consumers enjoy video content since it makes services, businesses, and products appear more real. Video content also builds up trust, with over 80% of consumers citing videos as being a part of recent purchasing decisions.
For local businesses to rank highly, they need to consider the content on their website. Having a blog is a great way to bring in your target audience to your site, so think about what local customers need to know. Addressing their pain points and answering their queries in blog posts will help you to engage with your audience and also to establish your business as a leading authority in its field – something that is vital when building up trust with your existing and prospective customers.
Search terms such as “to buy” have become increasingly used over recent years. There are no less than four kinds of search intents – purchasing, obtaining information, getting to the business’ website, and browsing to compare products. Google has now tailored its search results in order to meet a user’s search intent. That means if you want your local business to rank, your content has to meet users’ search intents. One way to do this is to create an FAQs page that has content written naturally in a style that will target local searches.
Almost 90% of all consumers admit to reading online reviews when trying to decide on a business to use or a product or service to buy. This is something that Google is very aware of and is now incorporating into its search engine results. For this reason, online mentions of a business are more important than its search ranking.
Context is important though. If you link to your business reviews on websites such as Facebook and Yelp, you are linking your site to these reviews, helping out Google making the connections for it. Furthermore, if you make a professional response to those reviews, you not only improve customer engagement, but also actively show Google your company will handle complaints well and engage effectively with its customers.
While at one time businesses were advised to ignore reviews, these days times have changed. Brand engagement couldn’t be more important, and Google will reward it too.
The online presence of your local business counts more than it ever did before in 2023. You need to ensure your website is high quality, that your customers are engaged with your brand, and that they are enjoying the best possible user experience whenever they visit your website. The customer first approach is now being rewarded by Google, so focus on this and you’ll see your ranking grow this year.