Locally Sourced SEO Success

author image Written by: Lia           Categories - Digital Marketing, SEO Tips>Technical Tips

Why Your Small Business Can’t Afford to Skip Local SEO Marketing

To make the best donuts on this side of the Ottawa River you have to follow a recipe without skipping an ingredient. The same principle applies for business management. Too often the things that can help your business are neglected. Whether you’re just starting out or you’ve been in the game for years, your business can’t afford to skip local SEO marketing. Local SEO improves your website’s visibility when potential customers search for products and services on search engines. Many consumers also prefer to support local businesses over big chain stores, giving you an opportunity to get a leg up on your competition with local listings. Local results appear at the top of a search results page, so local SEO is absolutely necessary for long-term success. While the research and implementation of a successful SEO strategy may seem like a lot of work, agencies are always available to lend a hand. From leads to increasing your bottom line, a local SEO service can help you reach your business goals. Here’s how.

A person takes a photo of their strawberry filled donut using their smartphone.
Get online, claim local listings, and get started!

Take the First Step: Get Online

About four out of five consumers search for products and services online via search engines. 86% of consumers use the Internet to find a local business. Online search is also the first choice to find information on local businesses for 72% of consumers. If your business doesn’t have an online presence yet, especially a local listing, you are missing out on being found by hundreds if not thousands of users each day. Think of all the donuts you could be selling! If you haven’t already, get online, create a local listing, and start reaching a larger customer base. But having a website isn’t enough. If you don’t rank well (i.e. on the first page) of search engine results pages (SERPs), you will still have limited visibility online since the majority of search users (some estimate peg as many as 90%) don’t look past the first page. But when SEO is paired with other online marketing strategies, such as social media and blogs, you can boost your search rankings and visibility online, along with your brand awareness. In turn, this ultimately leads to more business for you and more tasty treats for your customers. Yum.

Go Mobile for a Local SEO Focus

More consumers are using their smartphones and other mobile devices for online search and activity instead of desktop computers. So to reach this growing mobile audience, you need a mobile-friendly site. Sites that promote user experience, especially mobile-friendly sites, will rank higher on SERPs than sites that don’t have a mobile version. You also need to ensure that all versions of your website, social profiles, and web presences have complete, up-to-date contact information (i.e. business name, location, phone number) to make use of local SEO on social media platforms and for mobile users. Business location is the main search focus amongst local search users. Once a local search has been made by mobile users, about half of them will visit the business within 24 hours. Local searches, local visits, and local sales are all related. Many people search for a local business in their area while in transit, with the intent of visiting the business soon after.

Three people stand at a subway station, each one staring at a smartphone in their hands.
Search: best donut shop near me

Local SEO Improves Business Visibility

Better visibility online directly correlates with an increase in sales. If your business appears near the top of a SERP, more people searching for your products or services will see your business and be more likely to click on your website. And if they like what they see on your website, then you’ll have a better chance at increasing conversions and sales.

Build Brand Awareness and Trust

While having a website is better than nothing, you still need to build brand awareness online. Brand awareness is one of the benefits of ranking higher on SERPs with the help of local SEO. But you have to work to maintain a high ranking. Posting useful, quality content with relevant keywords on your website will help. As will a strong online presence on social media that utilizes SEO best practices.

Make Your Brand More Trustworthy

Search users usually only look at the first SERP because they are more likely to trust brands that appear at the top of the results. Local SEO helps you rank higher because your local listing is placed in a different class than PPC and organic results. Search engines, like Google, are placing local results at the top of SERPs. By boosting your rankings with local SEO, you can build brand awareness and appear more trustworthy to consumers. Users also tend to favour local listings on SERPs. These listings appear more authentic and trustworthy, especially when maps, verified contact information, photos, and customer reviews are present.  

Barista at a coffee and donut shop carefully pours an espresso while a line up of customers wait.
Building awareness can mean the difference between waiting to serve a customer and being so busy you need to catch your breath.

Increase Traffic and Conversion Rates

Local SEO services use intensive research and keyword analysis to find effective keywords that are relevant to your business. These are keywords used by a target consumer population searching for products and services related to your business. This process will target consumers who are more likely to contact you and visit your website and/or storefront. And when geolocations are added to the mix, users searching for products or services in your area will see your site. As a result, SEO generates high traffic and conversion rates.

Get Ahead of Your Competition

There’s a very good chance that your competition is already using local SEO. Try searching for them now and see for yourself. Are you confident that when people search for the best donut shop in Ottawa that your going to be visible on the page? If you want to have a chance at success in your industry, you need to implement an effective SEO strategy that will get you on the same page as your competition, and then eventually ahead of them with a higher search engine ranking. Even if your competition is much bigger than your business, small businesses can outrank larger businesses with the proper use of local SEO.

Deliver High ROI

When done properly, SEO is a cost-effective and affordable marketing tool that provides an excellent return on investment (ROI). The ROI is long-term since SEO provides non-stop organic traffic that would otherwise cost a fortune with paid advertising strategies alone. SEO is also customizable to your budget and the needs of your business.

How Bad SEO Marketing Can Negatively Impact Your Business

A poor SEO strategy will directly affect your bottom line. No one will be able to find your business online as your rankings will be too low or non-existent. This means no one will be able to read your content or learn about your brand. Simply put – your donuts will go stale before anyone gets to take a box home. Ultimately, bad SEO results in your business spending resources without any ROI. You won’t have web traffic, leads, or sales generated from search.

Why A Professional Kick-Start Is the Best Option

When done correctly, SEO works. It can deliver constant traffic to your site and boost conversions. But it’s not a simple feat. The world of SEO is constantly changing as Google releases updates and algorithms. These can change your ranking in a heartbeat. But there are professionals who stay up-to-date with SEO best practices so you don’t have to worry about it. Contact your local Ottawa advertising agency today to get started with local SEO services.


Google Introduces New Curbside Pickup & Delivery Features for Local Businesses


Good news for local businesses that have adapted their business model during the pandemic – Google is launching new features that allow users to see a business’ curbside pickup and delivery options along with other important information within Google Maps and Google My Business.

Such information includes:

  • Delivery providers

  • Pickup and delivery windows

  • Delivery fees

  • Order minimums for delivery or pickup

Google is starting off small, and will be rolling this feature out only for Instacart and Albertsons Cos. stores in the U.S. However, there are plans to expand to Maps and other partners later on.

Google is also currently testing another feature that would improve the curbside pickup process for customers by providing real-time updates between the customer and the store.

Here’s what this would look like:

A customer places an order for curbside pickup on the store’s app and it gets added to Google Maps. Google will notify the customer when it’s time to leave to pickup their orders, and ask them to share their estimated time of arrival (ETA). Their ETA will be continuously updated depending on the customer’s current location and traffic flow. When they arrive, customers can check in on the Google Maps app, and even let the store know where they are parked, and someone will bring out their order for curbside delivery.

Google will begin testing this feature with grocery store chain Fred Meyer in the summer of 2021, but only in select stores located in Portland, Oregon. It is unknown if this feature will be rolled out to include other stores and locations.

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Google My Business Opens New Spam Report Form


New Feature Gives Users a Way to Report Misleading or Fraudulent Info on Business and Map Listings

Google’s rolled out a solution for reporting fraudulent activity related to both Google Maps and Google My Business. This solution, the Business Redressal Complaint Form, is designed to give users a way to submit complaints about “misleading information or fraudulent activity on Google Maps related to the name, phone number, or URL of a business.” This new feature was announced by Google My Business Community Manager Marissa Nordahl on February 27 and is now live. “If you come across a business name, phone number, or URL on Google Maps that leads to fraudulent activity, you can now submit a complaint using this form,” commented Nordahl in the Google My Business Help Thread announcing the form. Google’s had many issues over the years dealing with spam related to Google Maps and local business listings and results. Multiple listings for the same business, inaccurate hours of operation, keyword stuffed business names, and fake businesses are all prevalent. It was also common for competitors or malicious users to update business hours on unclaimed listings, sometimes posting inaccurate hours or marking a business as “permanently closed.” It’s also not uncommon for spam photos to appear in business listings, or for descriptions to be updated. This form gives businesses and users alike an opportunity to push back against this spam and take more direct action in addressing false information.

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