Optimising your business’s website can seem like an insurmountable task but we’ve created a simple step by step guide to local seo in Exeter and the surround areas. Even if you can only complete one of the tasks in our guide you’ll still be well on the way to improving your Google ranking.
1. Google My Business
GMB is one of the most valuable free tools on the internet. No matter what your industry you should be taking advantage of this opportunity to display your brand. This service provided by Google is a perfect place to send positive signals to potential customers and the bots responsible for structuring and optimising search results. If you operate in the Exeter area you can specify your service areas and display your business on Google Maps searches.
Spend time detailing all of your services, opening hours and any other information relevant to your brand. Link your business website to ensure potential customers can visit your site in one click directly from a search. This alone will do wonders in communicating your location, services and assets in one simple step. If you do anything in this guide I strongly recommend this is your first port of call.
2. Social Media
Understanding and identifying the best social media platforms for your brand is key to creating an active, engaged audience.
The original and still one of the best. Facebook has been at the helm of social media for years but is now being challenged by younger iterations. Facebook tends to have an older audience which in general means more disposable income but with age comes stagnation. People are wise to the ads appearing every time they scroll and pages are easy to create so don’t expect any quick wins. Creating an honest page for your brand that you can build over time (we’re talking years) is the goal here.
Ask yourself, does my brand have photo worthy opportunities on a regular basis? If the answer is yes Instagram is for you, focusing on image more than text, this is a perfect place to visually shout about what you do. Regular posts of eye catching products and activities are key here, get this right and you can see exponential growth in small amounts of time.
Facebook for business. LinkedIn is growing, fast. If your in the service industry or your looking for B2B projects, LinkedIn is your one stop shop. A social media platform with a real focus on connecting professionals and as I’m writing this, the best algorithm for your content.
3. A Proffessional Website
A website is a home for your brand. Just like a physical storefront it must be engaging, informative and easily accessible. These 3 elements are all essential to converting visitors into leads and eventually customers.
Put simply our first impression of virtually anything is done visually. Within 0.5 seconds the majority have people have made assumptions about your brand based on your website. The goal here is to ensure you exceed and surpass any initial expectations with a combination of beautiful design and fresh engaging content. This could be images of you and your team or simply the services you carry out, the question you need to ask yourself is; what do my potential customers want to see that is going to build their trust and encourage them to use my services.
A great first impression is essential but now you have to back it up. If visitors want to use your services immediately they will but some will visit simply to gather information and use your site as a baseline to compare against other competitors. At this stage content is KING! Your copy and your images are going to set you apart from the competition so I suggest commiting time and resources to discovering which content resonates with your new leads and adapting and improving it to exactly match search intent. This can be completed with testimonials, portfolios, gallerys, great copy etc, get this formula right and you will skyrocket to the top of Google’s ranking based on your value to the search tem or keyword.
How may times have you been stuck on a website, unable to find the correct link or pathway to complete the task at hand? It’s infuriating and all too common on smaller business sites. Ensuring your site has a great structure and an easy method to move between pages and content is just as essential as the content itself. Clear Calls To Action and Contact pages are essential. You never know which page/part of your site will convert your visitors and it’s of the utmost importance to ensure that they can engage with your services easily at any time during their navigation of the site.
Reviews, testimonials, social proof. Call it what you will but evidence of people using and valuing your services is one of the best ways of building trust with potential new customers. It also sends clear messages to Google that you are providing a good service and warrant your position within their search engine rankings.
Where you can try to prominently display testimonials on your site so visitors can clearly see them. Ensuring you get a range of reviews across different platforms is also beneficial so try to spread across GMB, Facebook, Yelp etc.
5. Great Images Taken By Or For You
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, content is KING! Websites are chock full of stock images that are recycled and reused constantly within their relevant niches. Get out of this adamagaing cycle by spending some time or resources getting some fresh new images of your premises, staff and services. Include Geo Tags and Alt Tags to ensure your communicating you work and operate in the Exeter area. Ps. little secret, Google loves it when you use your own original content and will award you with a boost in your rankings.
6. Local Backlinks
What’s a backlink. Well put simply a backlink is a link from another domain to yours. These can take many forms and while I don’t recommend starting a backlink campaign getting links from any B2B work you do can act as a signal indicating your value to Google within the local community. Local directories and businesses you’ve worked with in the past are a great place to start to try and build some backlinks to your site.
I can almost hear the groan from here. Blogging can seem like one of those tasks that has no tangible benefit and is very time consuming. You couldn’t be more wrong!
Writing short blog posts on your site is an invaluable indicator that you are updating your site and keeping up to date with search intent and your industry. Stagnation isn’t good for any business and writing short articles can be just as much of a help to you as it is to others. The SEO benefit is huge, as you write more content you’ll start to target more and more keywords in your niche and reinforce some that are already there.
8. Frequently Asked Questions
As business owner I’m sure you hear the same questions about your products and services everyday. The same questions you answer every day are the same keywords that are typed in to Google on a daily basis. This has a two fold benefit, one your going to get organic traffic that is directly searching for a service similar to yours and you may reduce the amount of times you answer these same regular questions.