Boston Local SEO Services
Building Visibility through Local Search Engine Optimization
Struggling to achieve visibility? Schedule your free consultation to learn more about how a full-service digital agency can transform your results.
Do you remember when the Internet took business away from local brick-and-mortar stores and handed it to national and international companies? While that might have once been the case, today’s situation is drastically different. Local SEO is critically important for startups, entrepreneurs, SMBs, and even enterprise-level organizations.
Not convinced? Consider some of these statistics.
Local SEO Statistics to Fuel Your Marketing Strategy
Almost 50% of all Google searches are for local businesses.
76% of people who conduct a search for a local business end up visiting that business within just one day.
Almost 30% of local searches end in a purchase.
“Near me” searches have doubled in recent years.
Almost 90% of people searching for a business location begin on Google Maps.
72% of consumers who search for a local business end up visiting a store within five miles of their location.
67% of people searching locally report being influenced by online reviews.
50% of all mobile searches are to find a local business address.
78% of local searches via mobile device end in an offline purchase (at a business’s brick-and-mortar location).
Local business listings are not just important today – they’re mission-critical. Without a strong online presence, your customers won’t be able to find you, and they’ll shop with a competitor. Working with a leading Boston SEO agency ensures that you have the online visibility necessary to achieve meaningful, measurable success.
Ready to take the next step? Get in touch to learn more about which online marketing solutions can ramp up your ranking within Google and other search engines.
Boston SEO Services for Local Businesses
Obviously, Boston SEO for local businesses is critical for digital marketing success. How does it work, though? What is local SEO when it’s all said and done? What should be included in local SEO packages available from a digital marketing agency?
What Is Local Search Engine Optimization?
Let’s start with a discussion of what local search is really all about. In a nutshell, it’s a specialized subset of SEO marketing that focuses on the unique factors required to help small business owners improve their visibility in organic search results. As such, it differs from basic SEO in quite a few ways, including the fact that Google shows two different types of local search results – so-called “map pack” and “blue link” results.
Map Pack Results
Run a search for “Boston SEO company” and you’ll see a results page split with different results. At the top will be a Google Maps image, with several local businesses highlighted.
Blue Link Results
Blue link results are your standard organic search results, and they’re located under the map pack results in most cases.
Which is better for your organization? It depends on your needs and goals. Only the first few local businesses will show in the map pack. Searchers must click through to see additional results. Many more results are highlighted in the blue link section at the bottom of the page. These results also benefit from showcasing the full page title and meta description.
Don’t leave your SEO strategy to chance. With over 10 years of experience, I’ve helped small businesses in and around Boston build their online presence and attract their target audience. Get in touch today to schedule your free consultation.
Keyword Research for Small Business Needs
Keywords are the building blocks of your SEO strategy. Your SEO agency must take the time required to identify the words and phrases that people use to find products or services like those you offer. It’s also important to understand that not all local SEO agencies understand how keywords differ for small businesses within a specific geographic area versus businesses that serve regional, national, or international customer bases.
For instance, if you operate a plumbing company in Back Bay, you’ll want to start with the names of services you offer, like burst pipe repair and drain cleaning. However, trying to optimize for those keywords won’t give you the results you need because they’re too saturated – every plumbing company in the US uses similar ones.
So, you want to narrow the playing field by focusing on more specific derivatives. These can include options like adding the city and neighborhood names to the keywords, giving you “burst pipe repair Boston” and “drain cleaning Back Bay”.
A trusted SEO company will not only be able to provide you with accurate keyword research, but should also offer comparison charts that highlight factors like cost per click, volume, keyword density, and more. This allows you to create an informed, dynamic strategy based on relevant local SEO factors.
The Question of Local Intent
Once, Google surfaces results based purely on keyword matching. So, a search for burst pipe repair would pull up listings for plumbing companies in Boston but also information about how to repair pipes yourself, supplies and tools needed for pipe repairs, and more.
Today, Google focuses on what’s called “intent,” which is really just anticipating what it is the searcher wants in terms of results. Is someone searching for “burst pipe repair” really interested in tools and supplies? A how-to guide? Or do they want professional help to get the problem resolved? All three of those intents yield different results.
Ranking Factors in Local SEO
Digital marketing services can help you rank well within local searches. However, to do so, those SEO companies must contend with several factors. Some of the most important elements in an effective SEO strategy designed to promote a local company in Boston include the following:
Google Business Profile
Originally called Google My Business, your Google Business Profile costs nothing and has a huge impact on your local SEO. You (or your digital agency) will need to claim your business and fill in all the details, including the business name, address, contact information, and more. You’ll also have other options that help augment your Internet marketing efforts, including blog-like posts.
Google Business Profile Category
SEO companies should use these categories to help create accurate, optimized descriptions of your business so you rank better in the SERPs.
Bing Places for Business
Yes, Google is the most popular search engine, but you cannot neglect Bing. Bing Places for Business is the search engine’s equivalent of Google Business Profiles, and you’ll need to ensure that yours is claimed and completed.
If you want to cement your position and commend those local signals, you’ll need to make sure you’ve claimed your business in some of the most popular online directories. This should be part of the online digital marketing solutions offered by any SEO company. What directories are worth your time? I recommend Apple Maps as well as Foursquare. The Yellowpages and Yahoo’s Localworks are also important.
Social proof is important both for visibility and authenticity, as well as for building trust with your audience. Genuine customer/client reviews help you achieve that. Make sure you’re listed (and rated) on Yelp. If you’re a business offering services, then Angie’s List (now known as just Angi’s) is another “must”. For businesses hoping to attract high-caliber employees, I recommend Glassdoor. All local businesses can also benefit from building a profile and responding to customer communications with the Better Business Bureau (BBB.org).
It’s not just the number of reviews that matters, though. You also need to consider whether those reviews include keywords and location information. Those are powerful signals to Google (and Bing) about your authenticity and the trust placed in your business. Reviews that you respond to show that you’re actively engaged and genuinely care about your customers, too.
Facebook Business Page
Social media marketing is an important part of boosting visibility for local businesses, although social SEO has a lower impact on your overall success than some other factors. Still, it’s important to create an effective, optimized Facebook business page for your company because some potential customers prefer to use Facebook to connect with companies in their local area.
Across all your online outlets, from your Google Business Listing page to your website, you need to ensure NAP consistency. NAP stands for “name,” “address,” and “phone number”. Make sure that you write your business name, address, and phone number the same way on all platforms, or you risk creating separate entries that Google treats as different businesses. That will dilute your overall results.
Structured Data Markup
Structured data markups can help you attract more customers and provide them with important information, while also boosting your presence in the SERPs. This type of data includes things like your website address, your menu (or menu of services), your operating hours, and a breakdown and contact information for various departments within your business. To add structured data markups, you’ll need to use a specialized tool like Schema.
Modern Web Design
Google’s first consideration is your site’s mobile-friendliness, followed by its navigability. Pay attention to things like user interface design and the overall user experience you’re delivering (UI and UX). The right web design company can ensure that you have a website that reflects your brand’s character while delivering the best possible user experience, whether your visitors are using a smartphone or a desktop.
Content marketing is a core consideration for local optimization, just as much as it is for standard SEO. Top SEO companies should offer guidance on how to create effective content that includes your targeted keywords and location information, while still delivering value to your audience and building your authority in Google’s eyes. It’s not just about lead generation – it’s about creating an image of an expert in your industry and positioning yourself as a thought leader.
Internal Linking and Outbound Link Building
Internal links are important because they connect different pages of your site and build relevance for specific keywords. Inbound links from other sites are also important, although those sites must be relevant and authoritative. It’s also important that you have a diversity of inbound links from different websites and that those links use local geo-indictors and relevant keywords in the anchor text.
One of the strongest signals for ranking in local searches is your business’s proximity to the searcher. While it’s impossible to optimize for this factor, it does make it imperative that you claim your Google Business Profile and keep your NAP consistent. Accurate geographic information will help ensure that you rank highly for relevant searches within your immediate area.
Local Search Engine Optimization Simplified
It’s time to demystify the process of ranking well in local searches. I’ve worked with startups, SMBs, and even S&P 500 companies in the US and globally to build robust online presences and connect my clients with their audiences. I can do the same for you.
From claiming your Google My Business listing to custom SEO packages, I specialize in online visibility. With experience that spans multiple industries, I understand what it takes to connect with your audience, no matter what your specialty or niche might be.
Get in touch to learn more about SEO for local businesses and how effective SEO campaigns can bolster your online visibility. Claim your no-obligation consultation today.