Local is essential for catching local business. A lot of white hat tips and tricks on local SEO have to done to make it to the top of SERPs. Some of the interesting aspect of advancement in local search over the past few years has been how little the algorithm driving local search results has shifted on Google.
For instance, while Google has made major changes to which queries trigger local results and how those results display, its stand on citation building and optimizing Google Business/Places/Maps/Plus Local listings has remained steady since day one.
Some of the recent factors like traditional organic signals are occasionally prominent as Google checks perfect ways to present merged local and organic results in the SERPs (search engine results pages). On the other hand, while review and social media signals are being spoken about frequently and starting to be incorporated in SERPs, the weight of those factors when it comes to local rankings is still moderately limited at this time.
Yet despite Google’s consistency in the past, we can expect the importance of certain local factors to grow in the coming years. Marketers should concentrate more on these key tactics at present.
Improving Domain Authority
The panda update had a major shift from keyword to context and it ended with the latest hummingbird update last August. This update had a clear impact on domain and brand authority, major facets of local SEO. These two factors now matter more than ever.
Aiming at micro sets of tail end keywords with thin content pages is a method that lost a great deal of effectiveness with the Panda release, and with the Hummingbird update, the tactic is poised to go the way of other previously killer SEO techniques that eventually became ineffective like microsites and PageRank sculpting with nofollow tags.
What matters more is how authoritative searchers and Google view a site relative to any given topic.
Does the site offer the information searchers need? Will it retain visitors on the site after their initial visit? Will they come back again based on the content? Or does the site simply contain pages only to manipulate the search results?
These are the types of questions Google tries to answer as it orders its search results, and it gets better at this every year.
Making Websites Mobile Friendly is the best tip for search engine optimization. In 2013 smartphone penetration reached 65 per cent, rising from 44 percent in 2011 and is expected to continue spiraling in 2014. With some analysts predicting that reach could be as high as 75 percent by the end of the year, it is safe to say that more people will access content with mobile devices than ever before.
At the time, Instagram was its only large licenser, but that alone was enough to make it the fourth largest data provider to mobile apps. With its increased reach (Pinterest, Uber, etc) and relative ease in managing the data on its platform, the four primary data aggregators (Neustar, Infogroup, Acxiom, Factual) will be joined by Foursquare to become five by the end of the year.
SEO with Maps
Every local search marketers know how to make sure their address information is correct and consistent across the local ecosystem, along with that they should also ensure to check map markers on local sites like Google Maps, Yelp and Citysearch.
If an address is entered correctly, these sites should be able to generate the correct latitude and longitude for proper pin placement.
Unfortunately, business locations on these maps often appear incorrectly. Because the underlying mapping software for these sites sometimes comes up with the incorrect latitude and longitude, checking just the address is no longer adequate to maximize the opportunity these sites offer.