If you’re like most business owners, having a website that ranks on the first page of Google is probably on your wish-list. The reason for that is pretty simple. In today’s digital age, a website that ranks well on Google is seen as a website that will attract more customers.And more customers translate to more profits.
Table of Contents
- 1. Understand What Your Audience Searches for and How
- 2. What Type of Search Queries Are Popular?
- 3. What’s Google My Business and What Can I Use it For?
- 4. How Can I Set Up a Google My Business Account?
- 5. The Importance of Google My Business
- 6. What Can I Do With My Google My Business Account?
- 7. Optimizing Your Google My Business Account for “Near Me” Searches
- 8. So, Is Google My Business My Only Hope to Increase Local Traffic?
- 9. The Final Word
But there’s a catch.
While high traffic is certainly something that you should aim for, you should always prioritize the quality of the traffic more than its quantity. Think of it this way: if you’re a plumber who offers services just in Queens, New York it doesn’t make much sense if you’re getting hits from users based in Illinois – they’ll never be your customers!
And that’s why you need to know how to get local traffic to your website.
Once you start getting high quality local traffic that’s relevant to your business, your sales figures will start skyrocketing and you’ll be able to increase your bottom-line.
Ready to see profits like never before? In this post, we’ve covered everything you need to know about getting high quality local traffic.
Understand What Your Audience Searches for and How
Before we get into how you can increase website traffic from local visitors, you need to understand the different ways in which users can go about searching for a product or service they need.
There are two major ways in which people search on Google: Direct Search and Discovery Search.
This is the term used for when a user searches for a business, service, or product using its name. For instance, if you type Content Development Pros in your search bar, this will be a direct search.
If a user’s search query isn’t as specific and your listing pops up, it’s said that the user found you through Discovery Search.
Building up on the same example that we quoted earlier, if your search term is plumbers in Queens, New York and your business appears in the results, you can say you’re doing well on Discovery Search.
Here’s a more detailed example of how that works:
By creating content using the right keywords (more on that later), we were able to make our client’s website appear a total of 17,988 times from October 2019 to December 2019 when users were searching for a category, product, or service that they offered.
What Type of Search Queries Are Popular?
Users are now relying more on specific, long-term search terms than ever before. What this means is that if someone’s looking for a hair stylist in a particular city, they won’t just write “hair stylist” in the search bar. Instead, they’ll type something that’s a lot more specific like “hair stylist near me.”
The massive difference in search volume shows why it’s better if you try ranking on long-tail keywords that are specific.
But how do you decide which keywords you should use?
There are a few ways in which you can find the right keywords for your business. For starters, you could use a keyword searching tool like Google Keyword Planner, SEMrush, or Ubersuggest to find keywords. The way these tools work is that you’re asked to put in a search term or phrase. The tool then gives you a list of suggestions that are similar to – or contain – the term you entered. You can then narrow down your search results on the basis of the volume, keyword density, and competitive score among multiple other metrics.
If you don’t want to spend a fortune on advertising, you can simply start putting these keywords in the content on your website including your landing pages and blog posts. This way, you’ll be able to rank higher on Google search without breaking the bank.
Another great approach is checking what suggestions Google is giving you for a certain search term. So, for instance, if you’re looking for hair extensions, the auto-fill suggestions might look something like this:
These suggestions are a great starting point if you’re looking to increase website traffic fast. If you want to narrow down your search results, you should start adding in locations to ensure that you only get high quality views from people who are actually interested in the product or service that you’re offering in a specific location.
We did just that for one of our clients and now they’re killing it on the results page!
Now, there are two ways to go about finding businesses on both Discovery Search and Direct Search. Your customers could either search fora business on Google Maps or on Google Search. That said, if you want to appear at the top of the results page on Maps or Search, you’ll have to create and optimize both your website and your Google my Business account.
What’s Google My Business and What Can I Use it For?
What’s the first thing you do when you hear about a new company? You Google it!
But how do you know whether the information available on Google for your website is accurate?
That’s where Google My Business comes into the picture!
Google My Business is one of Google’s many, many tools designed to help business owners increase their visibility and help users find the information they’re looking for.
With an optimized and verified Google My Business account, you can let your customers know where you’re located, your operational hours, your contact details, and a brief description of what you do– basically all the basic information that your customers could possibly need. In fact, customers can also leave reviews on your Google My Business account for other users to see.
At times, Google pulls up the information from your Google My Business account and adds it to the Knowledge Graph Card that appears on the right side of the search results. This makes it even easier for customers to find your business online to get in touch with you.
And that’s not the only benefit of having a Google My Business account.
Once you have a verified account, you can start uploading pictures and creating posts to interact with your audiences on a more personal level. The best part about posting through your Google My Business account is that your posts remain live on Google Search for as long as two weeks! This means that if someone’s searching for your business, there’s a high chance that they’ll end up seeing one of your recent posts on Google itself, hence increasing your visibility.
How Can I Set Up a Google My Business Account?
Like all other Google tools, setting up a Google My Business account is also very easy.
The first thing you have to do is go to www.google.com/business and click on Manage now
Next, you will be asked to enter the name of your business.
Once you’ve filled out this information, you will be asked where your business is located. The best part about Google My Business is that you can even set up an account for your virtual business.
All you have to do is check the following boxes under the address form:
If you have a business that only operates in a certain area, you will be asked to specify these areas in order to increase the chances of your business popping up on Google Search. This is extremely important if you’re trying to increase traffic from local visitors.
After you’ve specified your area of service (if applicable), you’ll be asked to choose what category your business fits in from a comprehensive list. This is the part you need to be a little careful. When choosing a category for your business, it’s important to be as specific as possible to ensure that your business appears only when customers are looking for a particular kind of product or service.
For instance, if you own a hair salon and also provide some additional services here and there, you should choose “Salon” as your primary category instead of hair salon. Also, remember to add all additional services as additional categories.
Also, if you feel like there are multiple businesses on your primary location (such as a grocery store with a pharmacy), you should make separate pages for each of these businesses to increase their chances of being viewed by users.
This is also epxlicitly specified in the guidelines for setting up a Google My Business account. You are required to follow the “This business IS a …” format rather than the “this business HAS a …” format.
Once you’ve specified the category of your business, you’ll have to add in your contact details including the phone number, URL, and address. At this point, you can also select which information you want users to see and what you’d like to hide.
After you’ve entered all of your information, all you need to do is verify your account and you’re good to go!
The Importance of Google My Business
According to Google, 76% of people who search for something nearby on their smartphone visit a related business within a day, and 28% of those searches result in a purchase.
If you ask us, those numbers are pretty great!
As a business owner operating in the competitive environment of today, you’ll probably want to increase traction and visibility in every way possible—and with over 55% of people searching for a product online before buying it, there’s no better way to increase visibility than optimizing your business for Google.
Google has become the go-to for everything from looking up a new business to reading customer reviews. That’s exactly why you should optimize your Google My Business account to ensure that accurate, credible, and updated information about your business reaches users whenever they’re searching for something relevant to your business online.
What’s more, data from the Local Search Association shows that only 44% of local businesses have claimed their Google My Business listing. This means that there’s a higher chance of your website or business showing up at the top of the results page if you verify and optimize your Google My Business listing.
What Can I Do With My Google My Business Account?
As mentioned earlier, there’s a lot that you can do with a Google My Business account. This includes sharing pictures and videos and creating posts.
And why would you want to spend time on that?
Well, according to Google, businesses with photos receive 42% more requests for driving directions to their location from users on Google, and 35% more clicks through to their websites than businesses that don’t have photos.
And it gets even better than that.
When you have an optimized Google My Business account, you can even see how many views your photos are getting and see how you’re doing compared to other businesses in the industry.
If something as simple as adding images can do so much, imagine the results if you start engaging with your audience directly on Google!
Types of Images You Can Add to Your Google My Business Account
It is estimated that about 91% of buyers prefer visual content. Needless to say, the more images you have on your Google My Business account, the better.
But what type of images should you put up?
The options are practically endless!
While it makes a lot of sense for you to highlight your products or services on your Google My Business account, there are a lot of other types ofpictures that you can – and should – post.
For starters, your Google My Business should always feature your logo to ensure brand consistency across all online channels. After all, there can be a lot of businesses with the same name in a city or town. In such cases, your logo can ensure that people don’t mistake another business for yours.
Similarly, if you own a store with a physical presence, you can put up pictures of the interior and exterior to attract more customers. You could also put up pictures that highlight the amenities that you offer and even happy team photos to increase the number of views on your pictures.
Remember, lighthearted pictures of your employees will not only leave a great impression on prospects, it’ll also help you attract more talented employees.
The Case for Visual Content: What Photos Can Do for Your Business
By now, you’re probably convinced that adding photos is important for your Google My Business account. But what does it really do for your business?
Remember when we said adding photos and videos increases the number of actions users take on your account? Here’s what we meant:
The more our client’s Google My Business photos were viewed, the more the business’s website was visited and the more calls they received. This goes to show that adding photos and visual content to your Google My Business account is one of the best ways to get high-quality local traffic.
Additionally, adding photos to your Google My Business account also increases the chances of your business getting viewed on Google Maps.
And that brings us to our next point…
Optimizing Your Google My Business Account for “Near Me” Searches
Ever relied on Google for a restaurant, café, or hair salon close to you? You’re not the only one.
In fact, 77% of the participants in a recent survey confessed that they use Google Maps to find information on “near me” businesses.
Now, while you need to have your address, areas of operation, and hours on your Google My Business account, that isn’t quite enough. In order to rank higher on both Search and Maps, you need to ensure that you also have customer reviews on your profile.
This is important for two reasons:
- Users read through reviews to see decide whether or not they’d like to try out a product or service based on other user’s experiences
- Reviews can help improve your Google ranking
The way Google works is pretty interesting. Being the best search engine in the world, Google wants to ensure that users only see quality results. This is why, among countless other metrics, Google takes the relevance, distance, and prominence of your website into consideration before ultimately deciding how high up in the results it should rank.
By maintaining a stellar online reputation complete with great visuals, regular reviews, and engaging content, you can increase your chances of making it to the top of the search results – “near me” and otherwise.
So, Is Google My Business My Only Hope to Increase Local Traffic?
It’s important, sure, but it’s not the only thing that counts.
Create Local Pages
Ever seen a business that has different pages for every city it operates in? That’s one of the best ways you can increase local traffic to your website and generate leads that convert.
Each one of these pages should have a description of your services, your operational hours, basic details on your pricing, reviews, testimonials, and contact details. This ensures that if a user lands on your local page, they’ll have all the information they need to convert successfully.
If you have a physical presence in multiple locations, you should also embed your Google Maps listing on each one of your local pages or websites to ensure that prospects can reach you easily.
Need help in creating local website pages for your business? Contact us today to request a free web development proposal for your dream website, and drive more traffic to your site now.
Local Directories Are Your Best Friend
Local directories are websites that are specifically created to feature businesses that operate in a specific area. These websites usually have the name, logo, contact details, operational hours, reviews, and a handful of photos of small and medium businesses in a neighborhood, town, or city.
Getting featured on a local directory does a few things for your business. First off, it helps your prospects compare your business to others in the area very easily using all the information that’s available.
Secondly, a local directory provides customers with details about your service in a particular area. In case your listing is optimized with the right keywords, reviews, and images, chances are that a prospect might go for your business even if they were considering another one just a few moments ago.
Lastly, getting backlinks from local directories can show Google that you’re a pretty big deal in the space you operate in, hence improving your ranking.
Get Reviews as Often as Possible
Getting reviewed on third party websites that are specifically designed to feature top companies is a great way to increase traffic from local visitors.
Reviews – whether from individual customers or big businesses – can help users get an objective view of how satisfied people have been with your services and can be used to predict how likely one is to have a good experience working with your company.
The Final Word
As a business trying to make it big, your focus should not only be on getting a lot of traffic to your website. Instead, you should try and optimize all of your accounts, listings, and website to ensure that they are aligned with the needs and requirements of your customers to ensure that you get high-quality traffic with every relevant search online.