Laying The Foundation: Basic Onsite Optimization Techniques For Local SEO
What is Onsite Optimization?
Onsite optimization is an element of Local SEO that deals exclusively with what is on your website. This includes everything from your company’s contact information, to your business’s blog, to the way your site’s HTML is coded. Here are some of the most effective ways to optimize your website locally:
Name, Address, and Phone (NAP)
Are you tired of not ranking in search engine results? Taking a “NAP” is a great way to start the process towards your site ranking locally. Perhaps the most important practice in local onsite optimization is making sure every page on your website contains your company’s name, address, and phone number (NAP). On WordPress, all you’ll need is a text footer widget with centered text and you’re done! That is, unless you’d like to take it (and rank up) to the next level with Schema.
Schema markup is an extremely useful tool for optimizing your local business. Schema inserts HTML code around your company’s name, address, and phone number to tell a search engine what it is looking at. The crawler is then able to match up a site and local listing, for example, and this helps promote your site’s local ranking. Schema is a project initiated by major search engines (Google, Bing, and Yahoo!) in 2011 that helps improve local rankings for relevant companies by having a uniform system for business information.
Here is Fannit’s NAP in HTML formulated according to Schema:
It’s also incredibly important that you are consistent with your NAP. Inconsistent “NAPing” will confuse both search engines and users alike. For example, if you company name is “Jeffries’ Burgers and Fries” and on your website you write it as both – “Jefferies’ Burgers and Fries,” and “Jeff’s Burgers & Fries,” you will confuse people and search engines who won’t be able to figure out your real company name.
Link to Google Local Places
It’s a good idea to add a link to your Google Places page at the bottom of your webpage so local Internet users (especially those on mobile devices) have easy access to it. This can help them acquire more information, directions, or even leave a review. Again, to avoid confusing both search engines and Internet users, be consistent with your NAP. You don’t want to call your company “Jeffries Burgers and Fries” on your Google Places page, and then turn around and call it “Jeff’s Burgers & Fries” on your website. Click here to learn more about setting up your Google Places for business.
Localize your Title Tag
One of the things you’re trying to do in local SEO is establish your company as a local entity. One great way to do this is to localize the title tag of your landing page. In order to localize the title tag of your home page, simply add the city and state to the title tag. Your title tag should then have an addition much like this:
Keep a Blog
To establish your business as a local company, consider regularly blogging about local events or businesses. This provides a good way for Internet users to find your website, it helps your readers associate your business with a location, and it establishes you as a local expert. This great interaction with readers can result in them returning to your website and recognizing you as a local company to give their business to.
Blogging about local events and businesses can also help you by providing backlinks that are relevant locally. Local links send signals to search engines telling them that you are important in your area, which can effectively boost your ranking on local search engine listings.
Keeping up a consistent blog is a surprisingly effective way to increase your website’s traffic. Several months ago at Fannit, we committed to consistently posting on our blog (1 post a day). The resulting amount of traffic has been astounding!
Here is a Google Analytics graph depicting our traffic increase due to daily blog posting:
There you have it! Once you’ve implemented these onsite optimization techniques, you’ll be well on your way to establishing your local presence in search engines and helping out users online. For more tips on this and other topics, check out our blog!
Have any further questions? Leave your question in the comments below. I’d love to help you out!