Even though they’re both types of search engine optimization, local search engine optimization is different from traditional SEO. Our local SEO services (also referred to as Google+ Local Optimization or Google Places Optimization) get local businesses on the map, literally and figuratively.
Over the past few years, search engines instituted several changes, giving local businesses a more prominent place in the search results. Someone looking for a local web design company in Birmingham or Montgomery doesn’t want to find the largest web design company in the country that’s 3,000 miles away. So, rather than showing the “strongest” websites, Google and Bing now show the most powerful, locally relevant businesses.
Someone in your industry is going to be at the top of the local search results. And they’ll greatly benefit from this. Our job is to make sure that it’s you, not one of your competitors.
Below, you can see what the search results looked like after we worked with Alfa Insurance™ to improve their Google+ Local rankings.
The area highlighted in yellow is the local search query. The searcher is obviously looking for a company in Montgomery, Alabama. The local search results are surrounded by the red, dotted line. One thing worth noting (besides the fact we ranked them #1) is that each result has the address and phone number right next to the listing. This makes it easier for future customers to find directions to a local business or call them without needing to visit the website to find their contact information.
Just by having strong local rankings, a business makes it easier to get a prospect on the phone or in their office, where they can turn them into a customer.
Improve Your Mobile Presence
A major benefit of our local search optimization plans is they also improve your presence in the mobile search results. In other words, when we improve a local business’ online presence, our clients also appear at the top of Google Maps found in mobile search results. By 2014 more searches will occur on mobile devices and smartphones than computers. A strong presence in local, mobile search allows businesses to stay in-front of new prospects when they’re ready to buy.
Why Work With Lumen?
We’ve been fine-tuning our local search strategies for the past several years. We consistently provide our clients with top rankings in local and mobile search results. But our campaigns don’t end with great rankings in the search results; rather, the purpose of every campaign is to create a positive return-on-investment. We’ve learned a number of ways to help your business stick out among your competitors, generating high click through rates and more exposure for your business. We hope you’ll ask some of our clients, because they’ll tell you exactly how much they benefited.
has successfully optimized the online presence of local companies in some of the most difficult industries and for some of the most competitive keyword phrases. (“NYC Hotels” was a pretty tough one, and the auto insurance industry is always competitive.)
More so than any other local SEO company in Birmingham, Alabama, we have the knowledge, skills, and experience to bring a local business to the top of the search results, maximize the benefits of having a top listing, and do all of this as quickly as possible. One of the things that’s vital to effective an effective local search campaign is familiarity with the local search landscape. What is effective in one geographic area or city isn’t necessarily going to be effective in another. Our familiarity with Birmingham, Huntsville, Montgomery, and Alabama in general allow us to create stronger, faster results than our national competitors.
Every local SEO campaign is customized to maximize our client’s return on investment. But, there are certain parts our local search strategy that are employed, regardless of the client’s size, industry, or budget.
Google+ Local Profile Optimization
The first step is making several changes to your business’ Google+ Profile. This includes things like ensuring it’s been claimed, setting up categories to match the campaign goals, writing a business description that doesn’t violate one of Google’s many rules, and adding relevant images and videos. If your business doesn’t already have a video, we’ll make one for you and add it to your Google + Local profile.
One of the primary factors driving local search algorithms is consistent, accurate occurrence of your business name, address, and phone number across the web (especially in local web directories like Yahoo Local, Yelp, Superpages, etc). In many cases, there are dozens of existing listings that are inaccurate. In these cases, we’ll go through and correct each listing by hand, while making sure the business listing is properly optimized with correct categories, keywords, and business descriptions. In addition, we find the business directories where you don’t currently have a listing and manually build out a complete business profile on the most popular and powerful local business directories. Each profile is built to its fullest extent, ensuring your business ranks for the keywords we’re targeting.
The single most important factor of a local search campaign is proper on-page optimization of your website. After a comprehensive review of your website, we’ll add and tweak information on your website that we know the search engines are using to rank local websites in the search results. This includes things as simple as making your business name, address, and phone number more prominent and as complicated as implementing semantic markup language to various pages of your site.
[toggle title="Do I need Google Places Optimization?"]It depends. If your business primarily caters to a local audience and you have one or more brick and mortar locations, then it’s a good idea to optimize your Google Places profile. If your company is primarily eCommerce or you want to target a national audience, then a traditional SEO campaign might be abetter fit.[/toggle]
[toggle title="How Long Will it Take to Optimize My Google Places Profile"]We generally tell clients it will take about 3 months to see results, but that’s just to be on the safe side. Usually you’ll notice a higher ranking in Google Places within a month and sometimes sooner.[/toggle]
[toggle title="How Much Does a Local Search Campaign Cost?"]‘s local campaigns are geared towards smaller companies with smaller budgets. The costs depends on the competitiveness of your industry and the current state of your business’ online presence. The average cost for a Birmingham local SEO campaign is $950/month. For most Montgomery businesses, it’s around $800/month. If these numbers don’t seem right to, we still encourage you to contact us, because some times the costs are much lower than we expect.
While we understand that’s not cheap, it’s much more affordable than the yellow pages and is almost always more effective.[/toggle]
[toggle title="I Already Have a Listing in the Yellow Pages. Why Do I Need This?"]The Yellow Pages used to be a great way of advertising. There’s no doubt about that. But, if you’ve been advertising with the Yellow Pages for the past several years, you already know they are on a massive decline. Their rates are going up exponentially, even for lifelong customers, and fewer people than ever use the Yellow Pages to find a local business.[/toggle]