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Local SEO for Small Business: Formic Media Seminar Series
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Local SEO for Small Business: Formic Media Seminar Series



How to rank in the Google "7-pack", a tutorial of the basics for small and local businesses.

How to rank in the Google "7-pack", a tutorial of the basics for small and local businesses.



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  • Local search often not differentiated between organic SEOWhen talking about optimizing your website for local search results  geo-modified search queries  different from ranking in local searchTonight, we will uncover what makes Local SEO different, why it’s so important, nuances for rankingEnd result – take home pointers to jumpstart your biz efforts in local search  the details that can help determine if local search is worth hiring professionals
  • Two separate ranking algorithms for organic SEO vs. local SEODon’t need a website to rank in local searchThis of top 3 SEs  have local listing centers  but it’s not just about local listingsQuestion for audience: claimed local listings before?
  • A conglomeration of websites makes up the local search landscapeIt’s a comprehensive, fragmented space peeps looking for business info in a variety of places  some places feed each otherLocal search derived from directories originally  although market share is moving more and more towards major SE local listings  at the center is Google MapsTo be in Google Maps, must have place page
  • In addition to local listings, local search is comprised of other messages/advertising with local intentPPC ads can be highly targeted, highly efficient for capturing the local customerSame with FB
  • Let’s start with arguably the most important local search place to be  the 7 packThe 7 pack pushes the organic rankings down – some below the fold.The Google 7 pack is currently the most coveted real estate in Local Search. This is what searchers see. This is what your clients and customers see.So how do you get there?
  • Google’s goal – return most relevant useful resultsUnderstanding local intentUnderstanding where you are, based on IP addressUnderstanding your search history
  • Between June 2008 and 2009  local market share on Google maps increased significantly – up 11%When classifying local intent, important to include offline advertising  happens not only online, but offline too.
  • Talked about the importance of local search  now we’ll talk about how to do local search.
  • These are the things that local experts generally agree can hurt your rankingsIn Google Maps:Multiple Local Business Listings with different infoNot using a complete street addressNot using a local phone numberDiffering signals from trusted sources of informationAll of this adds up to LOCATION CONFUSION, which seems to be the biggest enemy of ranking well in Maps.
  • Enter business informationSubmit for verification  via phone or postcard  enter PIN
  • As part of the profile completion process…similar to organic SEO
  • Citations help validate that your listing is accurate these are mentions and articles, content about a biz…adds relevancy.Similar to how inbound links count as votes in organic search…Local social media sites, foursquare, loopt, gowalla etc.
  • Casts a wider netAlso good for organic SEO  links/votes to websiteA tedious, daunting task
  • A great service for ensuring biz info is distributed far and wide and accurately is to use UBLFormic works closely with UBL as a partner to help our clients become listed, efficiently and accurately.Paid service
  • Now you’ve submitted…what’s next…management.Track progress, stay up to date, find areas to improve – have all the info in one place.

Local SEO for Small Business: Formic Media Seminar Series Local SEO for Small Business: Formic Media Seminar Series Presentation Transcript

  • Local SEO for Small BusinessFormic Media Seminar
    Presented by:
    Anna Hutson
    Account Executive
    Formic Media, Inc.
  • Co-Sponsored By:
    Mike Rasmussen
    503.937.1111 | 503.789.2593
  • What is Local SEO
    Optimizing Locations based on Local Intent
  • What is Local SEO
    Requires a Different Mindset from Traditional SEO:
    • Traditional SEO is about optimizing websites; Local SEO is about optimizing locations
    • Local Search has its own set of ranking factors
    Traditional, Organic Search
  • What is Local SEO
    Local Search
  • What is Local SEO
    Local Paid Search
  • What is Local SEO
    OneBox results (“7 Pack”)
    Traditional organic, geo-targeted result
  • What is Local SEO
    General Ranking Factors for the “7 Pack”:
    • Local Intent
    • Search history
    • IP address targeting
    20% of all Google searches are related to a location – 1.28 BILLION per month
  • Why Local SEO Matters
    Stats & Facts:
    • There are 50 million Place Pages
    • These cover all types of places, ranging from businesses like tailors, restaurants, and optometrists to locations like dog parks, transit stations, and baseball fields.
    • More than 4 million business listings on Google claimed by business owners (using the Local Business Center, now Google Places)
    • Nearly 2 million listings have been claimed in the United States
    • Place Pages are viewed millions of times each day
    40% of ALL online searches have local intent!
  • Why Local SEO Matters
    Local Search Market Share is growing:
    • It is important to have Local Search as part of your overall online and offline marketing strategy.
    • Offline advertising helps to generate the demand for local search intent.
  • Google Places, Yahoo! Local, Bing Local
  • Local Search Strategy & Optimization
    Important Elements to Ranking in the “7 Pack”:
    • Claim your local listing
    • Ensure that your company does not have duplicate listings
    • Ensure that your listing is properly categorized
    • Include keywords in the local listing Title
    • Proximity of the business to the city center
    • Google Places service areas
    • Complete local business listing profile
    • Number of citations
  • Claim Your Local Listing
    • Trust is a huge signal for Google
    • Only 2MM claimed in U.S. so far
    • http://www.google.com/places
    • No duplicate listings!
    • Do the same at Yahoo (listings.local.yahoo.com)
    • And the same at Bing (ssl.bing.com/listings/BusinessSearch.aspx)
  • Claim Your Local Listing
    • Enter business info.
    • Verify your listing.
  • Include Keywords in your Title
    Add Keywords to your Title:
    • These will be bolded in results.
    • Help to increase CTR, similar to PPC advertising.
  • Categorize Your Listing
    Add Relevancy Factors:
    • Search Engines use categories to help define your business accurately.
  • Proximity to City Center
    • Having an address in the city and close to the city center helps with local ranking.
    • Importance is determined by competition.
  • Service Areas & Home Based Businesses
    Add Service Areas:
    • Extremely helpful for home based businesses.
    • Good for businesses that serve specific areas.
  • Complete your Local Listing Profile
    Add Profile Content:
    • Reviews
    • Photos
    • Videos
    • Coupons
  • Off-site Optimization: Get Citations!
    Key Citation Sources:
    • Yellowpages.com
    • Superpages.com
    • GetFave.com
    • Hotfrog.com
    • Local.botw.org
    • Citysearch.com
    • InsiderPages.com
    • CityVoter.com
    • Judysbook.com
    • Kudzu.com
    • ShopInCities.com
  • Off-site Optimization: Get Links!
    Submit to Free and/or Paid directories
    Add & verify business information with local Data Providers
  • Off-site Optimization: UBL
    Universal Business Listing (UBL) Services
  • Off-site Optimization: UBL
    Universal Business Listing (UBL) Reporting
  • Tracking Your Local SEO Success
  • Analytics
    Create a Vanity URL: (e.g. www.formicmedia.com/portland)
    Use GA Advanced Segments
    Create a Tracking URL
  • Action Items & Takeaways
    • Claim your local listings!
    • Utilize a combination of local optimization tactics, including testing paid search.
    • Stay up-to-date, local search is evolving at a fast pace.
    • Evaluate resources, find a qualified professional to get things done if resources are spread to thin.
    Your Competitor
    Your Competitor
    Your Competitor
    Your Competitor
    Your Competitor
    Your Competitor
  • Resources
    • http://www.google.com/places (Google Places)
    • http://www.listings.local.yahoo.com (Yahoo! Local)
    • http://ssl.bing.com/listings/BusinessSearch.aspx (Bing Local)
    • http://www.seomoz.org/blog (SEOMoz Blog)
    • http://searchengineland.com/ (Search Engine Land Blog)
    • http://blog.searchenginewatch.com/ (Search Engine Watch Blog)
    • http://www.google.com/support/places/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=107528 (Google Places Quality Guidelines)
  • Q & A!
    Presented by:
    Anna Hutson
    Account Executive
    Formic Media, Inc.