Local marketing, or hyperlocal marketing, involves targeting customers within a specific area based on their location. For many UK businesses, Google searches based on local queries within specific locations are critical to maintaining website traffic, and attracting customers to visit the business.
Google refines more search results based on the location of searchers, which are now more than ever out and about on smartphones.
As mobile shopping and internet usage continues to grow, using your smartphone to find local information has become almost second nature for some.
Hyperlocal marketing essentially involves creating content specifically providing hyperlocal intent or answers for customers in a local area, and making sure potential customers can find you in the places they hang out online.
“Near me” queries have been on the rise since around 2015, with phrases such as “closest” and “nearby” also being very popular search terms.
This targeting allows you to answer immediate questions and needs of potential customers who are within your area.
One industry it is particularly important for is restaurants and the like, as the public are now used to searching for specific venues near their exact location, and will base whether they turn up on your door on user reviews. Ensuring you are at the top of the search results is critical to maintaining foot traffic.
In the next few years, local or hyperlocal marketing will become an even more important asset to businesses.
Ensure Google My Business is Updated
Your Google My Business page is critical to appearing in the search results, so ensure your listing completely up-to-date, with every single relevant field filled in.
High-quality images attached to your profile will also help attract customers, and take a look at what you have to offer.
On top of this, ensure your business is displayed in the correct categories for Google.
Feature on Relevant Local Directories
No doubt there are local directories related to your business or industry, or at least somewhere where potential customers may see your profile.
Make sure your business name, address and phone number is correct on all local directories that can help potential customers find your business.
If you can find relevant platforms that allows for user-generated content such as photos or reviews of your business, this can be a great way of interesting new customers. For instance, TripAdvisor can really help people discover your business for the first time.
Having more local citations and links from directories can also help you out in gaining the best possible position within the search results.
Monitor Local Searches
While it’s all very well to do everything you can to market your brand, you must ensure you monitor exactly what people are searching for.
Take a look at what your competitors are up to, and track what they are doing within popular local searches. Compare this to where your website appears, and how you can compete better.
Track particular keyword rankings within your location, and see what data you can find in order to discover how your target audience within the area may act. This should help to guide your strategy in the future.
Produce Localised Content
Whether it’s on your blog or content directly on your website, produce content that is interesting to people in your local area. This could be services pages for particular offerings in an area, or a blog post that provides helpful answers or information to problems people may be having locally. Be sure to use keywords relevant to your local area.
Be sure to use keywords relevant to your local area. Perhaps mention points of interest that may be famous within your local area. People may search for businesses “close to” a specific landmark or attraction when wondering what they can do after that particular activity.
Local Landing Pages
Think about what landing pages you can create, with content specific for customers in particular areas.
Consider the keywords you could use related to your location, in order to best appeal to customers. Also be sure to include local indicators, whether it’s your postcode, name of a city, country, or otherwise.
These landing pages should also aim to directly convert local customers. Whether this is a purchase, a booking, or a newsletter sign-up. Think about how you can tailor a localised landing page into a way of getting some information from your targeted audience.
Include Structured Data Markup
Structured data markup, or schema markup, allows you to define business attributes, such as your business type, address, location and phone number.
While Google can crawl your website and see local information, schema markup makes it very clear to Google what you are about, and therefore makes it easier for you to appear for relevant local searches.
For businesses with multiple locations it can be very handy, as you can mark up each one individually with the correct information.
Name, Address, Phone Number
To rank well in the local organic search results, ensure your name, address and phone number (otherwise called NAP) across your site on each individual page. And in particular, on your contract page.
This helps your business stand out in the search results, as it shows you are a legitimate business. Any spammy websites trying to bait for clicks from the search results may not be able to list a physical location.
Otherwise, having the NAP across the website sends more local signals to Google to help you rank higher for geo-targeted local searches.