5 SEO Tips for Local Small Business Owners

As a small business owner, your goal should be to inform Google of where you are located and what you have to offer so that your business can appear in front of as relevant an audience as possible. You can accomplish this goal by implementing several local SEO tips. Keep reading to learn what these tips are so that you can increase your brand awareness and profitability without dishing out thousands of dollars on paid advertising.

1. Include NAP Information

Your site should include accurate “NAP” information (Name, Address and Phone Number). If your NAP information is inaccurate on your website, local citations, and social media pages, your business is less likely to show up in a local search. The global footer of your website is a great place for NAP information to ensure that it stays consistent on all pages. This helps the search engine crawlers can connect your pages together.

2. Solicit Customer Reviews

Online reviews are essential for any small business. They can let prospective customers or clients know whether your company is worth investing in while telling Google whether or not your business should be recommended to search engine users. By soliciting customer reviews, you can increase your chances of ranking high. Angie’s List, TrustPilot, Yelp, Google, and Facebook are all examples of sites you can use to capture customer reviews.

3. Use Local Keywords

The use of local keywords is imperative for any small business owner looking to improve their online presence. If you are a moving company in Los Angeles, be sure to use keywords like “Los Angeles movers, “Los Angeles moving company” and “Los Angeles professional moving services” throughout your web pages. In the event that your business serves multiple cities or areas, you should create unique pages of content targeting each city or area.

4. Claim Your Google My Business Page

You should claim your Google My Business page and update it to include your NAP information, website, hours of operation, and more. Google My Business will give you the opportunity to respond to customer reviews, share useful information, and stand out from competitors.

5. Take Advantage of Local Citations

Local citations which include your business’s NAP information are a great way for you to boost your authority and connect your business with the city or area you serve. Some of the most powerful local citation sites include BBB, HotFrog, Manta, MerchantCircle, ThumbTack, and SuperPages.
If you’d like for your business to thrive in local SEO, including NAP information on all of your pages, soliciting customer reviews, using local keywords, claiming your Google My Business page, and taking advantage of local citation will help you do so.

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5 SEO Tips for Local Small Business Owners

5 SEO Tips for Local Small Business Owners

Want to improve your business skyrocket? Ready to get serious business opportunity! Build an affordable as well as effective web presence that reflects YOUR unique business website. For more info call: 919-521-4887 Visit: https://90degreedesign.com

Top 5 Image Optimization tips for your Website

Top 5 Image Optimization tips for your Website

Image Optimization is one of the most important factors that you need to consider on your business website. Visit: https://90degreedesign.com

To Link or Not to Link – That is the Question

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Historically, we have placed “Website Designed by 90 Degree Design” and linked back to our website in the footers of websites that we build. We did this for 2 reasons – first, we felt like it was a good way for potential clients to easily find our website and second, we felt that linking to our website would boost our search engine rankings. The big question is, does it improve your rankings or, as many people now feel, does it negatively affect your SEO?

One issue is that footer links have been overused and no longer carry much weight for rankings.

More importantly, many SEO experts believe that Google considers this a “link scheme” and a violation of their Webmaster Guidelines. You can find more information about Google’s guidelines for link schemes here. A good number of professionals believe that web developers linking back to their sites in the footer of websites is considered as “widely distribut(ing) links in the footers or templates of various sites” and that you will be penalized for unnatural links or link spamming.

In this case it seems to be a better safe than sorry scenario. At the very least, you will not gain any positive traction from backlinking to your website in the footer and it could actually backfire and cause you to drop in rankings.

There may be times when you feel that the exposure your link will get from a client site outweighs the risk of being penalized for spammy backlinks. If you do decide to backlink, adding a no-follow attribute will help Google and other search engines know you are not trying to manipulate results.

HTTP VS HTTPS – IS IT WORTH IT?

About a year ago we transitioned our website from http to https after learning that Google might be offering search engine optimization rankings boosts to websites that use secure socket protocol over sites that do not.  Initially, we thought, “What a great way to get the edge on our competitors.” But unfortunately what happened was anything but a rankings boost.  After a year, we’re back up to where we were, but it’s been a rough ride.

 

If you’re starting a new website from scratch we recommend you start out using https on your site because we do believe the internet is moving in that direction as security becomes more of an issue in the coming years.

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If you’re thinking about converting a current website to https, here are a few things we learned during our process that may help make the transition a little smoother:

First and foremost, before you get started, make sure you are prepared with a full URL list of all the pages on your website.  You can use this website crawler to help out –  https://www.screamingfrog.co.uk/seo-spider/.  Use that list to create 301 redirects from all of those pages to the new pages with https.

Once you’ve made the change, make sure you have a secure padlock.  If you’re not sure, go to https://www.whynopadlock.com and do a scan of your site to make sure that everything is properly secured.  This site is a great tool for figuring out any reasons you may not be seeing the secure padlock sign.

Be sure to update your Google business page, Facebook page, Yelp, etc as soon as you make the change.  This step should not be necessary if you’ve done your 301 redirects correctly, but it is still a good idea to cover your bases.

Immediately create a new sitemap for your website with all the new URLs in place and submit that to Google webmaster tools.

Lastly, any backlinks you have, particularly those with higher domain authorities or Google page indexes, go ahead and change your backlinks to https.  Again this step should not be necessary if you’ve properly implemented 301 redirects, but in our experience it is better to be safe than sorry.

We’d love to hear from you about your thoughts and experiences about converting to https and whether or not it was a positive experience for your SEO rankings.  You can find us at 90degreedesign.com

Best internet marketing firm for your business

We are 90 Degree Design. We are a graphic design, web development and marketing company whose special market focuses include the golf and resort industry, real estate marketing and small business start-ups. Visit: www.90degreedesign.com