Local SEO for Businesses in Hobart
There are 5 areas of SEO that need to be optimised to achieve maximum results on the front page of Google, however if you’re in an industry that relies heavily on local enquiries then your first priority is local visibility.
You can achieve local visibility in a number of ways.
First is to organically appear for location keywords in the organic listings. Example: SEO Hobart or if you’re not an SEO agency like us, Carpet Cleaners Hobart. When a person types a search query into Google with a location keyword, the search intent to buy now is amplified. What other reason would a person have to type the service or product name into Google with a location keyword, other than the fact they are ready to take action now. Keywords that include a location are amongst the highest converting keywords that exist especially for service based businesses.
Local Link building
Link building is the process of getting other websites on the internet to create a link on one of their pages back to your site. It remains one of the most powerful ways to improve your sites ranking in Google. The most common way link building appears is a word or phrase on a webpage with the blue font that directs you to a different website when clicked. Here is an example Google.
In this example if you click the blue text it will redirect you to google.com. The blue text is called anchor text and the words within the anchor text tells search engines what the link is relevant to so in this example the link is relevant to the word Google which also happens to be their brand name which is the safest possible way to do anchor text.
Getting other websites to create a link back to your website is extremely difficult which is why google still values links highly in its algorithms.
Before we go out and try create hundreds of these backlinks it’s important to note that Not all links are valued the same. For example a link from a reputable local website is worth more than thousands of links from random sites in Russia. How do we get local reputable links? There are several ways but here is just a couple of really powerful ones you can implement straight away.
Almost every industry has complimentary businesses that aren’t competitive. For example if I’m a tile cleaner there are carpet cleaners, if I’m an electrician there are plumbers for almost all industries there are complimentary services and often that you have existing relationships with and this is the first place to start for link building. Simply ask these complimentary businesses to set up a referral partnership (this can have offline benefits as well as online). Pages can be interlinked in multiple different ways but these often include a resources page, blog articles recommending the other business and even sometimes links in the footer of both sites however this isn’t recommended as can cause a few other issues.
Local events are a great way to get links from local websites. Get creative and create an event then invite the community to attend through as many local event sites as you can find which all allow you to link back to the event page on your website. This is again a technique that has a lot of offline and online benefits that will help the business.
Supplier or Stockist Links
A great sources of links can be anyone whose products or services you supply. A common example of this would be if your selling a product then who either manufactures the or wholesales the product to you. You simply ask if they can create a stockists section on their website with a link to your site. The result is a highly relevant link from what is often an authority in the industry. To continue our example of the Tile Cleaner, this would mean reaching out to the suppliers of the chemicals you use, or even the equipment you use. In the example of Equipment you might offer the company a testimonial to publish on their website in return for a link being part of the testimonial. Testimonials are always incredibly powerful so most companies will jump at the chance.
Second method of local visibility is by appearing in the Map Listings. Below is a screenshot of what your Map listing may look like in your area. Map Listings are highly effective in driving enquiries especially for the types of services where a simple service is required and there isn’t a lot of consideration needed to compare services. I.e carpet cleaner, plumber, electrician. Often a person just wants a list of the most local service providers to call quickly.
Map listings therefore are extremely valuable and is usually the first step in the SEO process.
Now before we can optimise your local map listing it’s important to set up or claim your GMB (Google My Business) listing. While Google may still allow you to appear in map listings without doing this step it’s highly recommended if you want the highest local visibility. Before you can claim and own your Google My Business listing you first need to verify your business identity and location so that Google can avoid businesses claiming false or multiple locations, which has been an issue for Google in the past. To verify your business address you will receive a postcard delivered to your business address which once received has a pin code you will need to enter into your GMB to verify. If your business is new and the address doesn’t exist yet, you can contact Google directly and submit the address to Google as a new address to be listed.
Once you have setup your Google My Business listing, you should follow all the steps to fill out all of the information. So many businesses put the basic information but forget details like open hours and website URL. Fill out as much detail as possible and upload at least 10 unique images of you and your business. Before you upload the images be sure to geo-tag the image to tell Google where the photo was taken. Try to incorporate a keyword into the image names.
There is currently only one possible way to optimise Map Listings to influence your brand to have priority over others in your local area. The answer? NAP Listings. Even with NAP listings you will still be limited by the location area in which each user is searching from. Businesses closest to where each user is searching will always have priority, however if there are too many local businesses competing for that one area radius then NAP listings will give you the advantage. So what are NAP Listings?
Once you have your Google my business listing optimised it’s time to begin building nap listings. NAP means Name, Address and Phone numbers. By getting your NAP on as many sites as possible you are essentially putting your brand on the radar of Google while at the same time telling Google who you are, what you do, and where you are. There are two types of NAP listings that you can build. Business Directory and Social Profile Listings. Both have equal value however there is a limit on how many Business Directories you can build each month. When you build your NAP listings you also need a plan on how to link them back to your brand. We recommend linking all your NAP listings randomly to either your Google My Business directory, your website, to other business directories and to your main Social Profile websites like Facebook. You want between 100 to 200 NAP listings and you want them linking back in random unpredictable ways back to your website.
NAP > Website
NAP > GMB > Website
NAP > Social Profiles > Website
NAP > Business Directory > Website
Business Directory NAP listing
Now while it’s acceptable to build business directories it’s important that you do not build too many business directories all at once due to issues with Link Velocity. Keep the number of new business directories under 1% of the total traffic you receive each month. View our blog to learn more about Link Velocity. When you publish your business directories always try to find directories that allow you to control keywords in the inner URL. You ideally want to have a keyword and your location included. Many however may only permit your brand name to be included. Here is an ideal inner URL sequence example for your business directory URL listing. www.truelocal.com/carpetcleaning/brisbane/electrodry
If you really want to supercharge your NAP listings without getting a link velocity penalty, you will need to build hundreds of social profiles.
Social Profile NAP Listings
Many people think there are only a handful of social sharing platforms available and if asked may only able to recall the main ones like Facebook, Linkedin, Twitter, Youtube, Instagram, Myspace. However there are literally hundreds of social sharing and 2.0 social platforms that you can have your Name, Address and Phone number listed with unique geo-tagged images.
Here are just a few examples of social sharing platforms you may not have heard about.
There are hundreds more like this for your brand to be published online.
While “Name, Address and Phone number” are the key details to be published, many social platforms will require additional information. Below is a checklist of information you may want to create so that building hundreds of social profiles is a simple copy paste efficient process.
- Personal Name (if Required)
- Post Code
- Email Address
- Open Hours
- Short Bio 1
- Short Bio 2
- Short Bio 3
- Long Bio
Expanding your location keyword visibility
Once you have achieved local visibility rankings for your top converting location keywords in Hobart you will have also set the foundations for strong rankings for a wide array of similar non location keywords from traffic still in your local area. To see the impact of your local SEO optimisation we recommend using a program like SEMRush to monitor both your selected keywords but using the keyword discovery to find other keywords which you are also now ranking for.
From here the same methods can be used to further increase your traffic levels from relevant local traffic. The next step is appearing for your more generic terms without a location in the keyword search query. For example if you are located in Brisbane Australia you may search for either of these keywords:
Electrician – 2400 searches per month (from hobart)
Electrician Hobart – 1300 search per month (from Hobart)
The generic non location keyword will almost always have higher levels of search volume. This makes it also more competitive and difficult to rank for in the top 3 positions of Google. However if you achieve rankings for “Electrician Brisbane” first, the goal of appearing for the keyword “Electrician” will be much easier.
As you begin to see your keywords move up the ranks to page one, be sure to monitor the increase in actual traffic from Google Analytics and also from expected traffic levels using SEMrush and Traffic Cost which shows the potential traffic equivalent cost if you were to pay for the same traffic via Google AdWords.