Big Head SEO is here to help New Bedford MA businesses improve their online presence. Because it’s a cold cruel world online when it comes to ranking and being seen. It’s harder than ever to rank, meaning that you need a strong marketing agency who knows SEO. So here are five steps that local businesses in New Bedford can implement to master the art of Local SEO, ensuring visibility, and attracting local customers.
1. Understand New Bedford’s Local Search Landscape
To effectively implement Local SEO, businesses must delve into the specifics of New Bedford’s local search landscape. This includes understanding local search intent, and by that we mean knowing what keywords demonstrate that a potential customer is ready to buy your service, identifying competitors, and grasping the unique search terms of the community.
That’s why number one is keyword research. Local keyword research is the cornerstone of any successful Local SEO strategy, serving as the compass that guides businesses to a prominent online presence within their specific geographic area. It involves a meticulous exploration of region-specific search terms, ensuring that businesses align their digital content with the language and phrases their local audience uses. For example, if we were promoting our digital marketing agency in New Bedford, we might use “SEO Agency New Bedford” for a keyword to target. We combine the keyword “SEO Agency” with the town “New Bedford” creating a new local search triggering keyword.
Here’s a keyword research checklist you can use to get started with your New Bedford MA localized keyword research:
Keyword research is a critical component of any successful SEO strategy. But in many cases, it can be the difference between success and failure for your SEO campaign. So don’t underestimate how serious you need to take this step. To ensure a comprehensive and effective approach, follow this keyword research checklist:
- Define Your Goals: Clearly outline your objectives for keyword research. Whether it’s increasing organic traffic, targeting specific demographics such as New Bedford MA, or improving conversion rates, having defined goals guides your research.
- Understand Your Audience: Identify your target New Bedford audience type and understand their search behavior. Consider their preferences, language, and the specific terms they use when searching for products or services.
- Brainstorm Seed Keywords: Start with broad, general terms related to your business or industry. These are your seed keywords and will form the basis for more specific variations.
- Use Keyword Research Tools: Leverage keyword research tools like Google Keyword Planner, SEMrush, or Ahrefs to explore potential keywords. These tools provide insights into search volume, competition, and related keywords.
- Analyze Competitor Keywords: Examine the keywords your competitors are targeting. Identify gaps and opportunities to differentiate your content.
- Focus on Long-Tail Keywords: Incorporate long-tail keywords (more specific, longer phrases) into your strategy. These often have lower competition and can attract more targeted traffic.
- Consider User Intent: Understand the intent behind each keyword. Are users looking for information, making a purchase, or seeking reviews? Tailor your content to match user intent.
- Evaluate Search Volume: Look for keywords with a balance of search volume. Extremely high-volume keywords may be competitive, while low-volume keywords may not drive sufficient traffic.
- Assess Keyword Difficulty: Evaluate the difficulty of ranking for specific keywords. Aim for a mix of low, medium, and high-difficulty keywords to create a well-rounded strategy.
- Localize Keywords (if applicable): If your business serves a specific location, include location-based keywords to enhance local SEO. Consider city names, regions, or neighborhood identifiers.
- Group Keywords Thematically: Group keywords into themes or topics. This helps organize your content strategy and ensures a cohesive approach to targeting related keywords.
- Prioritize Intent-Driven Keywords: Give priority to keywords that align with your content strategy and are likely to drive conversions. Consider transactional keywords for product pages and informational keywords for blog content.
- Check Trending and Seasonal Keywords: Monitor trends and identify seasonal keywords relevant to your business. Adjust your strategy to align with changing search behavior.
- Ensure Keyword Diversity: Avoid over-optimization by ensuring diversity in your selected keywords. This creates a more natural and user-friendly experience.
- Create a Content Plan: Develop a content plan based on your keyword research. Outline how each piece of content aligns with target keywords and addresses user intent.
- Regularly Update and Refine: Keyword trends evolve, so regularly revisit and update your keyword strategy. Adjust based on performance data and emerging trends.
*Need help with your keyword research? BIG HEAD SEO has your New Bedford business covered. Feel free to contact us at any time if you need us. Now, let’s talk about Google Business Profile, another vital component to local SEO success.
2. Optimize Google Business Profile for Local Dominance
Setting up a Google Business Profile is a crucial step for any New Bedford MA businesses looking to establish a strong online presence and enhance their visibility in local searches. Follow these steps to create a compelling Google Business Profile:
- Sign in to Google: Begin by signing in to your Google account. If you don’t have one, create a Google account to proceed.
- Access Google Business Profile: Navigate to Google Business Profile (GBP) by visiting https://www.google.com/business/.
- Enter Business Details: Click on “Start Now” and enter your business name. Ensure that the name you provide matches your real-world business name.
- Specify Business Location: If your business has a physical location that customers can visit, enter your business address. For businesses without a physical storefront, you can choose to hide your address.
- Add Service Areas (if applicable): If your business serves specific areas but doesn’t have a physical location, specify the service areas you cover. This is particularly relevant for service-based businesses.
- Provide Contact Information: Input your business phone number and website URL. Make sure the contact information is accurate and up-to-date.
- Choose Business Category: Select the most relevant category that represents your business. This helps Google understand your business and match it with relevant search queries.
- Complete Verification: Google will ask you to verify your business. This is typically done by receiving a postcard at your business address with a verification code. Follow the instructions on the postcard to complete the verification process.
- Optimize Business Information: Once verified, optimize your business profile by adding details such as business hours, photos, a business description, and any additional attributes that provide valuable information to potential customers.
- Encourage Customer Reviews: Actively encourage satisfied customers to leave reviews on your Google Business Profile. Positive reviews contribute to your online reputation and influence local search rankings.
- Regularly Update Information: Keep your Google Business Profile up-to-date by regularly updating business hours, services, and any relevant information. This ensures that customers receive accurate details when searching for your business.
Need help claiming and setting up your New Bedford MA business’ Google Business Profile? Put our BIG HEAD SEOs to work for you! Our New Bedford MA office is ready to serve!
Next up content creation, optimization & syndication.
3. Craft Location-Optimized Content
Tailoring website content to resonate with New Bedford audiences is key. Incorporate location-specific keywords naturally into web pages, blog posts, and service descriptions. This not only boosts search engine rankings but also engages the local community. Here’s a checklist you can use to crafting better local content:
- Understand Local Audience:
- Identify the specific location or locations you are targeting.
- Understand the demographics, interests, and preferences of your local audience.
- Research Local Keywords:
- Conduct thorough keyword research with a focus on location-specific terms.
- Include city names, neighborhoods, landmarks, or regional identifiers in your keyword strategy.
- Incorporate Long-Tail Keywords:
- Use long-tail keywords that include both location and relevant industry terms.
- Long-tail keywords often have lower competition and attract more targeted traffic.
- Create Location-Specific Landing Pages:
- Develop dedicated landing pages for each target location.
- Customize content, including contact information, services, and testimonials, to align with each location.
- Optimize Meta Tags:
- Include location keywords naturally in title tags and meta descriptions.
- Craft compelling meta tags that encourage clicks while accurately representing the content.
- Utilize Header Tags:
- Use H1, H2, and H3 tags to structure your content.
- Incorporate location-specific keywords into header tags for better SEO.
- Localize Content:
- Tailor your content to reflect local interests, events, or news.
- Mention local landmarks, attractions, or community initiatives to resonate with the audience.
- Include Local Reviews and Testimonials:
- Showcase positive reviews and testimonials from local customers.
- This builds trust with potential customers in the targeted location.
- Implement Local Schema Markup:
- Use schema markup to provide search engines with additional context about your business and its location.
- Include relevant information such as address, phone number, and business hours.
- Optimize Images:
- Use high-quality images that represent your business in the local context.
- Add alt text with location-specific keywords to optimize images for search engines.
- Include Location in URLs:
- If feasible, include the location in the URL structure of your pages.
- This provides a clear signal to search engines about the geographic focus of the content.
- Embed Google Maps:
- Embed a Google Maps widget on your website to provide easy navigation for visitors.
- This enhances the local user experience and signals geographic relevance.
- Create Local Content:
- Develop content specific to local events, news, or trends.
- This positions your business as an active and engaged part of the local community.
- Interlink Location Pages:
- Interlink between location-specific pages to improve navigation and overall website structure.
- This helps search engines understand the relationships between different pages.
- Mobile Optimization:
- Ensure your website is mobile-friendly, as many local searches occur on mobile devices.
- Optimize for local searches on smartphones to improve the user experience.
- Test and Monitor Performance:
- Regularly monitor the performance of location-optimized content using analytics tools.
- Test different approaches and adjust based on the data to improve effectiveness.
4. Generate Local Reviews and Manage Reputation
Positive reviews are a powerful Local SEO tool. Encourage satisfied customers to leave reviews on platforms like Google, Yelp, and industry-specific directories. Simultaneously, actively manage and respond to reviews, showcasing a commitment to customer satisfaction.
And please, don’t make the mistake of underestimating the importance of reviews for your business. Sometimes just a handful of reviews on your Google Business Profile can shoot you up to the top of the local 3-pack. You should be asking for a review from every single one of your customers. And hey, if someone leaves you a bad review, don’t freak out. It’s normal for a business to have one or two bad reviews. You try to get those folks to reconsider their feedback and move on. Drown that one bad review with 100 good ones. Not that hard.
5. Leverage Social Media for Local Engagement
Social media platforms are not just for global reach; they are potent tools for local engagement. New Bedford businesses should strategically utilize platforms like Facebook and Instagram to connect with the local audience, share updates, and foster a sense of community.
By implementing these strategic steps, businesses in New Bedford can rock the complexities of Local SEO and establish a strong online presence tailored to the unique dynamics of their local market.
Face it, if you’re a business owner, you almost need to master SEO or trust in an agency that takes all of it hyper-seriously and meticulously.
Check out BIG HEAD SEO when considering an agency for your local seo needs. Take control and put our big heads to work for you! BIG HEAD SEO is ready to knock it out for you!