As a business owner or as someone who works in the marketing department of a larger company, you probably have heard the term “local SEO.” We have many business owners including dentists, doctors, psychologists, and acupuncturists that ask us “What are the benefits of local SEO for my business?” Great question! It is enormously important for your local business to create a local SEO optimization strategy. But before we go into the benefits of local SEO, let’s define the term “local SEO”.
What is Local SEO?
If you have a local business, like a dental office, restaurant, or have people that visit your office regularly, it’s important to allow people to find your business online to get new customers. Even if you don’t actively get visitors to your office (and don’t need them to visit), but are targeting customers in the same geographic area as you’re in, optimization is needed to rank highly for that area. The process of optimizing your business’ online presence for a geographic location is called Local SEO.
Now that we know what local SEO is, let’s dissect these HUGE benefits of local SEO and how they can help your business explode with growth:
What are the Benefits of Local SEO for Businesses?
Benefit #1: Local SEO can be Created 100% Free
If you have the time, patience, and desire, you can learn how to build local seo strategies for your business! Anyone can do it. We recommend checking out our post on local SEO strategies listed further below.
Benefit #2: You Will Need Less Advertising (Or None at All!)
Another benefit of local SEO is that you don’t need to spend money on Google AdWords to get new customers. In fact, many small businesses don’t spend a dime on advertising and get their local customers naturally in the search! Here’s an example for someone in West Palm Beach, Florida searching for “Online Marketing Company”
The top result is an advertisement from Google AdWords. The next 10 results (3 shown here) are what’s called “organic search results.” The top 3 results get tons of traffic! In fact, according to a study by Chitika, 91.5% of all clicks happen on the first page of Google.
A further breakdown shows how important ranking in the top 3 spots is:
These results are NOT from Google AdWords (advertising). To see a breakdown of clicks, let’s take a look at a study from compete.com
As you can see from the above study results, 85% of all clicks happen in the 10 organic spots of Google compared to just 15% from advertising. So you can see where we’re going with all of these charts, right? It’s incredibly beneficial to your small business to improve your local SEO strategies!
Benefit #3: People Will Find Your Business in Organic Search
Another great benefit of local SEO for your business is that Google places your business in two places in its listings. The first place local seo optimization will get you is on Google’s organic search results. Google uses a highly sophisticated algorithm to try to rank the most relative content at the top so searchers get results to exactly match their intent.
Let’s say that you are the owner of an acupuncture center. You have many opportunities to get in front of Google searchers with your local SEO strategy including:
- Research Phase – Searchers may be asking “what is acupuncture” or “how can acupuncture help me?”.
- Options Phase – Searchers may be asking “acupuncture near me” to find local options
- Purchase Phase – After sifting through reviews of local businesses found on the results towards the top, searchers in this phase are ready to choose an acupuncture center and then likely do more research on that center’s website.
Benefit #4: People Will Find Your Business on Google Maps
The second place Google will list your business if you build a local SEO strategy is in Google Maps. It is highly important for a business to be ranked in maps so that searchers with intent find your business, especially on mobile devices. On phones, there is not a lot of real estate to search for, searchers want results and fast. Google knows this, that’s why they typically place the local results in the form of map listings above search listings. On a typical map listing, a searcher has an option to click on the business’ website, call the business, read business reviews, and even get directions to their business’ physical location.
Benefit #5: Google Wants Your Local Business to Rank Highly
Another benefit of local SEO for your business: Google wants local businesses like yours to rank highly in your local area! Let’s take a look at search results for the term “eating disorder psychologist miami”:
Seemingly no surprises there, we typed in “Miami” and received many Miami related businesses. What about if we just type in “eating disorder psychologist” while we are located in Miami?
Boom! That’s right, Google places local businesses in both the organic search and in their map rankings! In fact, some listings like my client Amy Boyers’ “Eating Disorder Psychologist – Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Miami…” Actually went up in ranking without the word Miami in the search. This shows that Google has put a heavy emphasis on helping local business rank for incredibly competitive keywords locally. Google recognized that 46% (according to Search Engine Journal) of all searches on their platform are searchers seeking local information. Thank you Google!
Benefit #6: You Will Be Where Your Customers Are
Another reason to build local SEO strategies for your business is because it’s where your customers are. According to a study by BIA/Kelsey, 97% of consumers research products online before making purchases locally.
“The Internet has indeed become an integral part of consumers’ local commercial activity,” said Steve Marshall, director of research, BIA/Kelsey. “The data suggest we’re at an inflection point where the balance of power in local shopping is shifting to online.”
This is a crazy statistic! By the looks of how integral technology has become in our lives, we don’t see this changing anytime soon.
Benefit #7: Local SEO Has Serious Longevity
While advertising certainly has major benefits in business, it has a short shelf-life. What do we mean by that? Once you stop spending money, your ads no longer appear. With local SEO strategies, your business will continue to reap the benefits well into the future. But like an interest-based checking account, you want to keep putting in money over time to see the best results. The same can be said of creating a local SEO strategy. To get the most benefits of local SEO, you should create a long-term strategy.
Benefit #8: You Can Be Seen Before Your Competitors
According to localmarketinginstitute.com, 56% of local businesses have NOT claimed a Google My Business listing. It can be safe to say that a large percentage of the 44% of businesses that have claimed their Google My Business listing aren’t reaping the benefits of local SEO that can be achieved through SEO best practices.
As we mentioned above, ranking on the first page of search and maps is critical to get a lion’s share of all clicks and views for your business. This local SEO benefit can help your target customers see you before they ever see your competition.
Benefit #9: Many of Your Competitors Don’t Optimize for Local SEO
As mentioned in the above point (but worth mentioning again!), many of your competitors aren’t following local SEO best practices and don’t have a strategy. Read my post “How to Build Local SEO for Small Businesses” to learn how you can implement an effective strategy to improve local SEO for your business.
Benefit #10: You Can Learn About Your Customers’ Intent
Another cool benefit of local SEO is that you can learn about how your customers find your business. For example, after you create a Google My Business listing for your business and get some data, you can see exact terms that searchers are searching for when they see your business listing. Here’s how:
- Sign in to Google My Business
- Click on the “Insights” button on the left
- Scroll down a little and see the “queries used to find your business” area:
The above image shows all queries (or searches) related to our client’s acupuncture business. We can take this data and analyze any key terms that we may want to optimize further on our website to get our client’s site even more viewed.
Benefit #11: Gaps in Your Business’ Services Can Be Filled
Another great benefit of local SEO is that you can find out how your competitor’s customers are finding their websites. You can use a free (or paid) version of semrush.com to find which key terms drive the most traffic to your competitor’s websites. This information can prove to be extremely beneficial to your business by providing you with vital information on what services your competitors offer that you may not (and maybe should add).
Benefit #12: Your Reputation in Your Community Will Improve
Another great reason to implement local SEO strategies is that your reputation locally will improve. To do this, you’ll need to get positive reviews for your business on Google and other key places. According to brightlocal.com, 91% of all people read online reviews before they make a purchase, and 84% trust online reviews as much as a personal recommendation.
So if you’re at the top of Google Search and Google Maps, AND you have great reviews from your customers, MAGIC happens! People find you and people trust you.
Benefit #13: Local SEO will Increase Your Website Traffic
One of the major benefits of local SEO is that more people will find your business’s website. As a business owner, getting the right audience to your website can be very lucrative. It’s important to create a website strategy that takes full advantage of your customer visiting your site.
Benefit #14: Local SEO Will Bring You New Customers
Finally, the main reason why local seo is important… You will get more customers locally! The higher your business ranks on Google’s search listings and map listings and the more terms you’re ranked highly for, the more your business will be seen by your potential customers. The more your business will be seen by your potential customers, the higher likelihood that they purchase from you.
In conclusion, there are many benefits of local SEO, including your business growing. With time, effort, and consistency, every local business can reap the benefits of local SEO strategies to grow and thrive!
The Benefits of Local SEO
- Local SEO can be created 100% free.
- You will need less (or no) advertising.
- People will find your business on search listings.
- People will find your business on map listings.
- Google wants your business to rank highly.
- Your business will be where your customers are.
- Local SEO has serious longevity.
- You can be seen before your competitors.
- Many of your competitors don’t optimize for local SEO.
- You can learn about your customers’ intent.
- You can learn about gaps in your business’ services.
- Your business’ reputation will improve.
- Your website traffic will improve.
- You will get new customers.
Thank you for reading our post on the benefits of local SEO. If you’re a business looking for help with your local SEO strategies, we’d love to talk with you! Click below to see our local SEO services:
The Bart Organization is an Internet Marketing company that helps businesses of all sizes either start digital marketing strategies or improve their current digital marketing efforts. We specialize in internet marketing services including: Social media marketing, digital advertising, SEO strategy, local SEO services, and website strategy. We also perform SEO West Palm Beach, Miami SEO, Fort Lauderdale SEO, and Charlotte SEO for clients. Contact us today to see how we can help!