There seems to be a lot of misunderstandings between the difference of local and traditional SEO. While this will not be an exhaustive explanation it will be helpful to talk about some of the primary differentiating factors. We have spoken some in the past about the different types of search marketing, and have traditionally broken it up into two separate categories: Paid Search and Organic Search Marketing. Local Search Engine Marketing would fall under the umbrella of Organic Search, although some marketers may indeed place it into a category of its own.
Local Search Marketing is unique primarily because there is a designated spot on the search result page to display local listings. On Google this designated area is usually just above the normal search results. This allows businesses to get coverage on the first page of Google for keywords that they otherwise might not be able to rank for. Local listings can also display some additional helpful information that normals listings won’t like business phone number, address, and even customer reviews.
The primary difference is that local search listings are based around a physical place where as the traditional search listings may not be associated with an actual physical place at all. Traditional organic listings are simply based around web content, for example a businesses website alone. You will only find places with a store front that you can physically drive to under the local listings. So what’s going on when a company has a listing in both search results. It simply means that both there physical location and their online location (their website) is receiving good search rankings. These two listings are completely separate from each other, well there is intact likely some correlation, but that is a topic for another time.
So how does one get their business to show up under Google’s local listings? Well, the first thing to be done is to claim your Google My Business Listing. From this point it would be a great idea to ask some of your current customers to leave reviews for your business listing. This will look great when new potential customers do a search for your business and can really help it stand out among your competition. Something else that can really help your local listing rise to the top of searches is by getting citations from other websites. A citation simply involves anther website listing the name, address, and phone number of your business. Local SEO is all about the consistency of your physical address. If some websites have your business address as one location and other websites have it listed somewhere else then Google will likely not place as must trust in where your business is located and therefore not rank it as highly. For the most part though everything that is involved in building traditional search rankings is also important in building local search rankings, including building back links and creating engaging content. So what are you waiting for, claim your local listing and start getting more customers!