Local SEO Course: How To Rank Your Website and Google My Business Listing in Google

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[Music] welcome to my course on local SEO i'm gary schola's I'm the founder of three...
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[Music] welcome to my course on local SEO i'm gary schola's I'm the founder of three bug media and for the past ten years we've been helping hundreds and hundreds of small business owners get better results with their local marketing in this course I'm going to teach you local SEO in an hour while there are lots and lots of different factors that make up local SEO most of them only move the needle of little bit as far as results we're going to focus on the few activities that you should be doing every month that are going to move the needle a lot and the great thing about this is that everything I'm going to teach you in this course you can do yourself and it's only going to take a few hours a month you don't need any expensive subscription plans you don't need any marketing experts everything I'm going to teach you you can do all by yourself now before we get started let's just review what's the difference between SEO and local SEO well traditional search engine optimization
SEO is when you're trying to rank your website more specifically you're trying...
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SEO is when you're trying to rank your website more specifically you're trying to rank a specific page on your website for a specific keyword that's traditional SEO and that's how the type of SEO that most of us you know have come to know now local SEO is different it's not only trying to do SEO for a smaller local area it's absolutely a totally different strategy than traditional SEO because with local SEO you're not trying to rank just your website you're trying to rank your business entity and that based business entity is across different properties on the web that can be your website your Google my business listing as well as various third party or review sites and directories so you see local SEO can actually be a little more complex than traditional SEO now for the purposes of this course we're gonna break it down into four key things your Google my business listing your website online
Reviews and citations so we're going to cover each of these in separate videos...
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reviews and citations so we're going to cover each of these in separate videos in this course and by the end of this course you'll have a solid foundation on how to do your own local SEO so let's get started and jump right in so let's talk about Google my business Google my business is a free listing from Google that helps local business owners get a better local presence online now why is it so important number one your Google my business listing it's what's going to show up at the top of the local search results or the map results if you've ever done a search in Google and you see a map at the top of the search results with local businesses that's actually not your website that's your Google my business listing showing up and it also shows up above the organic search results number two your Google my business listing usually gets more visits and more views than your website Google's made a lot of enhancements over the years to the Google my business listing and because of that users a lot
Of times don't need to go to your website to get the information they need...
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of times don't need to go to your website to get the information they need they can look at online reviews look at pictures get directions make phone calls and depending on your business can make reservations book appointments directly from the listing without going to your website number three google reviews google reviews are most likely in most cases the most important online reviews you can get for your local business reason being is most people turn to Google when they're searching for a local business and Google reviews are the first set of reviews they're going to see the second benefit of Google reviews is that they have a direct impact on your Google my business listing so the more reviews you get the more positive reviews to get the more you respond to reviews those things are going to have an impact on how well your Google my business listing shows up in the local search results so when it comes to Google my business listing we're going to cover a few important things number one is information having
A consistent nap and making sure your category is correct now your nap is your...
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a consistent nap and making sure your category is correct now your nap is your name address and phone number you want to make sure that that information is exactly the same in your Google my business listing as it is on your website as well as any third-party review sites or directories where you're listed we also want to make sure that we're in the right business category which we're going to go over we're also going to cover reviews reviews are super important for local SEO we're actually going to dedicate quite a bit more time on reviews images in your Google my business listing are super important as well as posts post is a relatively new feature in Google my business and it kind of acts like a Facebook post so you have a new announcement new product news team member new sale things like that you can use your Google my business listing to post about these things so people can see them now the great thing with you google my business listing is it's pretty simple once you've gone
Through it a few times it's not overly complicated to kind of make changes to...
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through it a few times it's not overly complicated to kind of make changes to and to maintain and really once you've kind of made your initial optimizations to the listing you're really only going to need about an hour a month to dedicate to your Google my business listing and really what's going to happen with this is you're going to spend your time responding to reviews uploading new images creating new posts for your business things like that and just checking to make sure that your informations correct okay so let's jump in and take a look at what these look like so let's take a look at our Google my business listing and see where we should be spending our time to get the most bang for our buck when it comes to local SEO before we start I want to show you what it looks like into Google search results in case you're not a hundred percent familiar now if somebody Google's your business name they're gonna get a result that looks like this on the right hand side this is your Google my business listing right
Here it has your pictures name reviews name address phone number things like that...
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here it has your pictures name reviews name address phone number things like that this is what your Google my business listing is gonna look like for your individual business ok the other way it can be displayed is if somebody searches in Google for your type of business so say you're a dentist they do a search and this is what we call a local search result or a map result because you can see the local map here with some local businesses and they sit above the organic search results okay and you'll see that the first three businesses in Google and business show up at the top which is why it's super important to try to get get in those top three results okay if somebody wants to see more they can either click on the map or they can click on more places and it'll open up the full local listing here and now you'll see a lot more businesses available okay so let's jump into the dashboard and see what it looks like now depending on your
Industry or country your dashboards gonna look a little bit different some...
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industry or country your dashboards gonna look a little bit different some industries have some features some don't but by and large it's gonna look something like this okay we want to look at a few specific areas in here number one will we want to look at the info panel and here we want to make sure our business names correct our name address phone number our our website is all accurate they recently added the option to add business descriptions so make sure you add a nice business description to your listing you can add your hours things like that so it's a good idea on a weekly basis just to spend five minutes and just double check that everything's accurate in here okay so it should only take you a couple minutes one thing you definitely want to make sure you look at are your categories okay Google lets you select a primary category and add additional categories okay and you can add several additional categories but just be aware make sure
That you select categories that are relevant to your business if you start...
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that you select categories that are relevant to your business if you start going too deep and start picking non relevant categories and your listing shows up people aren't clicking on you it can actually hurt the performance of your listing overall so only pick categories that are relevant to your business if you're not exactly sure what categories you should be picking I'll show you an easy way to get some ideas so say you're a dentist and you want to see what category you should be in so just do a search for dentists in your area and you take a look at the top things that are showing up and if you look right here you'll see it google displays the primary category for that business so here it's dentist dentist dentist dentists most are dentists but if you scroll down a little bit you'll see here dental clinic is showing up a few times as well cosmetic dentistry and if you scroll down a little bit more you have pediatric pediatric dentistry so
Even with something like dentist there are actually several different...
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even with something like dentist there are actually several different categories so it'll be up to you to do some research and decide which one's gonna be a primary and which ones are going to be your secondary categories next place we're gonna go to our reviews now you should do this same thing on a weekly or monthly basis depending on how often you get reviews to your Google my business listing but reply to reviews thank them give a thoughtful reply Google loves it when you interact with your customers and interacting through reviews is a great way to interact with them okay Google loves it when business owners are very active with their Google my business listing so the more you can do the more you can make updates things like that the better it will be for helping you to rank your listing higher so moving on to photos photos are super super important for Google my business creates a nice visual gives a visual representation for potential customers
Of what your business looks like get a feel for it things like that so you...
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of what your business looks like get a feel for it things like that so you should be doing this at least on a weekly basis hopefully upload some new pictures you can do them with your phone inside your business outside your business new items new services or products things like that you can see here they're tabbed by owner customers can actually upload photos as well video has been added as a feature in Google my business currently you're limited to thirty seconds or less but same thing great for new products services sales announcements things like that but just take some time every week upload some new pictures keep it active shows Google that you're very active with your listing okay the other area we're going to look at our post poster recently a recent addition to Google my business and post kind of act like Facebook post they're not meant to live permanently they last about seven days on your listing before they disappear and they're meant for if your new
Product announcement you got sales going on new team members they're just new...
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product announcement you got sales going on new team members they're just new stuff that's going on with your business this is a great feature and you can add multiple posts at the same time to go live and the great thing about Google my business and posts is that when you post your listing every single person who sees your listing will see the post unlike Facebook that highly filters out how many people actually see any one of your posts with Google my business everybody sees your posts okay so once you make a post if you scroll down your listing you can see right here what it looks like and if you have more than one it'll display too and then turn into a carousel if you have more more than two and you if you click on and you see it pops up like here okay and same thing they only last about seven days so you should be updating them every week to make sure that you always have a few posts that are live on your listing okay and just the last thing I want to show you really quickly is just the insect
Tab inside tab you should be taking a look every month it just has your...
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tab inside tab you should be taking a look every month it just has your analytics and if you look here it'll show you search terms that are people using to find your business which is fantastic who give you some ideas for a new blog post or content on your website just give you insight of what kind of language people are using to find your business also tells you how many times you're showing up in search brand is search is people searching for your business name discovery is more like dentists in my area but they're not looking for any particular one things like that so and same thing with direct direct is people kind of already know who you are they're kind of searching for you by your name address or your phone number to find you you can also see how many times you're showing up in the search results also how many - how many people are clicking through to your website how many people are asking for directions how many people are calling from you calling from the listing each month so gives you a lot of lots of good insights and you should be checking this on a
Monthly basis so let's talk about online reviews not only are online reviews...
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monthly basis so let's talk about online reviews not only are online reviews important for local SEO they're also important for your business in general the vast majority of people turn to the internet when researching a local business and reading online reviews is one of the things that will determine if they contact you or not so the more reviews you have and more positive reviews you have the more likely somebody is going to contact you instead of a competitor so in this section we're going to answer a couple questions number one what review platforms are important more specifically what review platforms are important for your specific business like I said earlier google reviews most of the time is going to be your most important review platform okay not only is going to help your Google my business listing rank higher but it's usually the first set of our views people see but for most businesses there's at least one
More sometimes two that are also important for your business in the next...
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more sometimes two that are also important for your business in the next video I'm going to show you how to find specifically the review platforms that you should be concentrating on for your business but when it comes to you know where to spend your time with online reviews I suggest you start with Google especially if you're just starting out getting online reviews focus on Google and once you're once you have a system set up and you're consistent and you're consistently getting reviews for Google then maybe look at adding one more review platform I usually don't recommend that you work on more than two at any given time because most businesses just struggle getting online reviews in general so don't thin it out by trying to get people to go to multiple review platforms stick with Google and then possibly add one more once you get some traction with your Google reviews number two how many reviews do I need and this is a question I get a lot from local businesses and the answer is it depends
It really depends on what your competitors have what you want to do is...
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it really depends on what your competitors have what you want to do is you want to look at the local search results in Google you want to look at the top three businesses showing up for your category and you want to look at how many reviews those businesses have some industries are a lot more review focus than others if you're a plumber or a locksmith you can be looking at literally hundreds of Google reviews some other you know industries like real estate or financial planners things like that you may only have five or ten you know as the average number of reviews for these top businesses showing up at a bare minimum you want to be what your competitors are round so if your top three competitors are you know average fifteen or twenty reviews that should be your starting goal and that should be your bare minimum because if you can't keep up with them then you're gonna have a harder time out ranking them with you google my business listing your long-term goal is to double what your
Competitors have so if those average top three competitors have 15 reviews apiece...
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competitors have so if those average top three competitors have 15 reviews apiece your goal your logo tone term goal should to get at least 30 reviews and that could take you quite a long time but doing local SEO and online marketing shouldn't be a short-term goal for you so if you plan on being busy in business for the next 5 10 20 years then these should be long-term goals for you when you can double your competitors what we've found is your conversion rates will skyrocket so if people are looking and trying to choose between you and a couple of competitors and you have twice as many reviews and your reviews are overwhelmingly positive it's almost a no-brainer an easy choice to go with the crowd and choose the popular choice which is your business with all these reviews so that should be a long-term goal but your short-term goal is to get at least what your competitors are getting okay and how do I get more views
Now how the system you used to get reviews really depends on your business...
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now how the system you used to get reviews really depends on your business there's lots of different ways to get reviews you have to do what is going to work for you and what's going to work for your business but I'm going to give you a couple of tips on how to make the most of that number one ask for reviews one-on-one I'm yet to see a mass email or putting a banner on your website for reviews work in any capacity okay so don't take your whole customer list and blast all them and ask them for a review because I can tell you right now almost nobody is going to leave a review and chances are pretty decent that you're gonna get some lukewarm reviews too because over time people become less enthusiastic about a business as time passes okay so ask one-on-one that is your best chance of getting a review okay and that can be in the form of in-person email a phone call
Maybe do a follow-up after you you know somebody's purchase your product or...
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maybe do a follow-up after you you know somebody's purchase your product or you've delivered your service whatever it is make sure you set up a system where you ask one-on-one in a personal matter okay number two timing is key people are most happy at the time of purchase or consuming your service and that is where you really want to ask for the review so you're you know say a day spa and somebody's just left and they're super happy that is a time where you're going to ask for that review because if you wait two weeks or you wait two months what's going to happen is they're not going to have the same fond memory of you know visiting your spot and even if they do it's not important to them anymore they're not thinking about your business anymore you're not a priority to them anymore so timing is critical make sure you strike while the iron's hot and when people are most happy number three make it easy so if you're trying to send people to a Google review
Page just tell people how to do it either you can just send them a link or...
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page just tell people how to do it either you can just send them a link or you can just say go to google and type in you know our business name or our business name and address something like that if you're sending somebody to a different review platform make sure you figure it you know you go that process a few times yourself write down those steps and then explain those steps to the person you're asking because if they start hitting roadblocks chances are they're just going to give up and move on so make it as easy as possible for someone to leave a review for you also be consistent create a system it's going to be impossible for you to get reviews over the long term and on a consistent basis if you don't figure out a system on how to do it so you may be the only one requesting reviews or maybe you have a team of people you need to train you need to work with them and figure out what is going to be the best way for us to ask for a review after somebody's made a purchase or consumed our service and like I said that can be a phone call an
Email in person request whatever it is just make sure it's something that...
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email in person request whatever it is just make sure it's something that you're that's going to work and you're going to be able to do on a consistent basis okay Leslie incentives now incentives you have to be careful with them because a lot of review platforms not only discuss in discourage incentives they don't even encourage you to ask for reviews like Yelp Yelp doesn't even want you to ask for a review whereas Google it's totally fine to ask for a review but you cannot pay somebody to write your review or ask for a positive review so you really have to look at the Terms of Service of each review platform to figure out what's allowed and what's not when it comes to incentives of my personal my personal experience in my personal opinion is if you're doing all of these you're asking one on one your timing it right you're consistent you make it easy for people you'll be able to get reviews regardless
If you offer an incentive or not okay so if you're doing these things right you...
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if you offer an incentive or not okay so if you're doing these things right you should be able to get reviews I highly discourage you to not pay for reviews tell people you'll give them a $20 gift card or something like that if they'll write a review for you or ask for a positive review I highly recommend you do not do that because that is against the Terms of Service pretty much every revue platform and the last thing you want to do is get banned or something or flagged or something like that for that review platform one thing I've seen businesses do that actually works really well but it's slightly gray area so it's up to you to look into this is to offer a prize or a contest every month and what you would do is you'll offer us a gift card to a local restaurant and you'll raffle it off for everyone who left a review saying March so 10 people left you a review in March and of those ten people you'll put them in a hat you'll whatever pick him at random and
One of those people will get an incentive we'll get a gift card to a...
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one of those people will get an incentive we'll get a gift card to a local restaurant or something like that I've seen that work really well and that's kind of a little bit of a gray area because you're not specifically asking people for a review or a positive positive review but if you're going to try something like that I highly recommend you read through the Terms of Service or each review platform to make sure your line but if I was going to do an incentive or something like that that's probably something I would do because you're not specifically asking people for a review or a positive review okay so these are the quest the main things that you need to know when it comes to online reviews and what we're going to do in a next video is I'm going to show you how to identify the specific review platforms that are important for your business now there are hundreds of review platforms out there but in
Reality there's probably only a handful that are actually important or relevant...
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reality there's probably only a handful that are actually important or relevant for your business so I want to show you three quick things you can do to find the review platforms that are specifically important for your business okay the first thing we're gonna do is we're gonna search for our own business in Google because we want to see what shows up okay so I'm gonna pretend I'm mr. Rooter in Charlotte here okay and we all know we talked about this already Google reviews are probably the most important set of reviews for most businesses not all but for most businesses so we know google is important okay what we want to look at is if Google's looking at any other review platforms and how we do that when we look at our Google my business listing here if we scroll down sometimes you'll see this reviews from the web okay and what this tells me is Google is actually monitoring other third-party websites for my business and they're taking those into account for my Google
My business listing so that can be helping me with my rankings or could be...
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my business listing so that can be helping me with my rankings or could be hurting me in my ranking so Google's pulling in 3 different review platforms right here listen 360 Facebook and homeadvisor okay so right away those are three review platforms that are gonna be on my radar okay listen 360 is a little bit different because listen 360 is more more of an internal review platform so businesses solicit their customers and leave it on less than 360 so I'm probably gonna rule that one out on there because not publicly available to everyone to leave a review for this business but still good to know that Google is paying attention to it okay so that's the first place they're gonna look I want to see what Google well you know what other review platforms Google's using to you know to take into consideration for my business the second thing we're gonna do is we're gonna look at the organic search results and see what shows up here okay listen 360 is
Showing up Facebook is showing up again we have the Yelp showing up so that's a...
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showing up Facebook is showing up again we have the Yelp showing up so that's a different one that's showing up and we have homeadvisor again showing up okay so right now homeadvisor showing up twice Facebook is showing up twice on their listing 360 showing up okay and yelps also showing up on here so that's the second place we want to look we want to see you know how many times these review platforms are showing up the third place we're gonna look is we're going to do a general search for our industry and we want to see what review platforms are showing up for people that are doing a discovery search they're not sure what plumber they want to use but they're searching for plumbers okay so when I search for plumbers in Charlotte here we get the local search results and when I scrolled down here you can see right here homeadvisor are showing up number one in your organic search results Yelp is showing up number two Angie's List showing up as the third one on here a Better Business
Bureau you can technically technically leave reviews on there so it looks like...
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Bureau you can technically technically leave reviews on there so it looks like Angie's List homeadvisor and Yelp are showing up so that's three places I've looked at so far to see how reviews are showing up both for my business specifically and for people that are searching for my type of business in my area okay so after doing that what welcome to conclusion I'm gonna come to is homeadvisor is the one for me so Google reviews are going to be number one homeadvisor is going to be number two with maybe Facebook as a number three home advisor could just Google is looking at it specifically for Google my business it's also showing up in the organic search results for my business and it's also showing up number one if people are doing discovery searches for my type of business ok so home advisors pretty important has lots of visibility and Google's also paying attention to it so if you do this for your business you'll be able to whittle down you know the one or two
Additional review platforms that you should be concentrating on for...
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additional review platforms that you should be concentrating on for your business so let's talk about your website in local SEO if you've done any research online and you've been studying local SEO you probably already know that there's literally hundreds of things you can do to optimize your website for local SEO what I'm going to teach you in this section is the most important things that you can do on your website to get the most impact for your local SEO and if you do these things and ignore everything else you're going to do fantastic and do more than most of your competitors are going to do okay now before we talk about specific types of content on the website I just want to go over a couple of key principles for you to be aware of that you can apply to the pages on your site number one is a title tag every page on your website a title tag and that is one of the first thing Google sees and scans when it
Looks at a webpage because it tells them right away what that page is all about...
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looks at a webpage because it tells them right away what that page is all about so you want to make sure you you use a descriptive title tag the good thing is depending on your content management system whether that's WordPress with Squarespace or whatever every time you create a page is going to ask you for the title and that is going to be the title tag for that page so there's not really anything special you need to do you just need to know what it is and make sure you add a descriptive title tag for that page a good formula to use is what you do Plus location so if your criminal lawyer in Denver Colorado a good title tag would be criminal lawyer in Denver Colorado very descriptive so if somebody's searching for criminal lawyers and they're located in Denver Colorado makes it super easy for Google to understand what that page is about and to serve that page to that user okay content content is the text that you're
Going to put on the page okay number one it needs to be unique content do not...
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going to put on the page okay number one it needs to be unique content do not plagiarize content from a competitor or from your vendor because if you copy and paste content Google knows it right away they know you're plagiarizing and what's going to happen is they're not going to their other nothing to rank that page at all in the search results or it's going to rank really low you'll never get on page one or at the top of page one for that because they know you took that content from somewhere else so you need to use unique content and rule up them I like to use is about 500 words or better for a page and when they talk about that specifically talking about blog content service product pages things like that a lot of times the home page might be more visual based so you may not have room to put that much content but these pages rule of thumb 500 or better you have to remember when somebody searches in Google Google wants to serve them the best page the best answer as a can so if you only have 50 words or a hundred words on that page and there's other pages that are 500 or 600 words
Chances are Google is going to show those ones instead because they'll...
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chances are Google is going to show those ones instead because they'll probably feel that it's more comprehensive information than what you have on there you want to give enough comprehensive information for Google to understand what that page is about and to feel confident in serving that page to the searcher as an answer for their search query okay next is images images on a page not only help break up the text content and makes it visually appealing it'll help with conversions can also help with your local SEO so if you add relevant pictures to a page usually when you upload a picture to your content management system like WordPress they're gonna ask you for a couple fields you're gonna have the title of your image and an alt text tag alternate text tag which is used for visually impaired people okay so if you add something relevant so say you're a contractor and on your service page for
Kitchen renovations you have two pictures of kitchens that you've...
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kitchen renovations you have two pictures of kitchens that you've renovated if you add the tenth the title and the alt tag for those of you know a new kitchen in Denver or a new kitchen in Toronto or wherever you're located that helps to reaffirm to Google that that page is about kitchen renovations it can also give you the opportunity to rank those images in site Google Image Search which could send more traffic to your site and it also makes it more visually appealing for the user which can help with conversion rates okay so use images when you can or even video next are forms forms this is just more of a tip on my part not so much for local SEO make it super easy for people to contact you no matter where they are on your website so if every page on your website think of it as the only page somebody is going to visit does it have everything they need to make a decision and to contact you from experience I know that the more forms the more
Opportunities you give people to contact you the more times people will contact...
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opportunities you give people to contact you the more times people will contact you conversion rates will just go up just by giving people more opportunities and making easier for them to contact you so make sure you have a means either put the form on the page or at least put a link or button on there to direct people to your contact page with a call-to-action also Google Maps this should be somewhere on your website a lot of times it'll be the contact us page or sometimes you put it in the footer of your website really depends on how your website is laid out but embed a Google map on your website somewhere okay this makes it easier for users to understand where you are and it also makes it super simple for Google to make the connection that you're a local business in a specific area okay so let's get to specific pages okay first off is your home page okay your home page is the strongest page on your website the most important page on your
Website for local SEO so it should be the main search term that you want to...
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website for local SEO so it should be the main search term that you want to show up for okay usually it's the general category of your business and your city so let's say your Day Spa located in Charlotte North Carolina your home page would probably be day spa in Charlotte or day spa in Charlotte North Carolina okay so anyone searching for day spas and they're in Charlotte makes it super simple for Google to understand that this website is a day spa and it's in Charlotte okay and that keeps them line with what you do and location okay so pretty straightforward whatever your most important term is should probably be your homepage title tag okay next up it's service pages or if you sell products product pages and this is where a lot of local businesses get it wrong either they set it up themselves or their whoever designed their website doesn't really understand SEO or local SEO and how it works and they just set it up wrong and the
Mistake a lot of local businesses make with their site is they set up a single...
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mistake a lot of local businesses make with their site is they set up a single service page so it'll have a single service page with all of their services listed on that page and if you understand how Google looks at pages and tries to rent them you'll understand why that page does not work because the rule of thumb should be every page one page one topic okay because when google scans a web page they want to figure out what it means and how can I hide it in case somebody searches for it later on so if you have a service page with six different services on there Google has no idea what to do with that page because it's six different types of things you're talking about on the page so the easy answer is I don't show it for anything and that's what happens with most local businesses what you want to do with your service pages and product pages is every single service or product that you have you want to have a dedicated page for it and that makes it
Super easy for Google to understand what that page is about and if all your...
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super easy for Google to understand what that page is about and if all your competitors all have their services lumped into one page and you haven't broken out in to specific pages gives you a much better chance of being able to rank for that specific service or product okay blog content lot of businesses struggle with blog content typically with trying to come up with ideas for blog topics and actually sit down and write them and things like that they they make it more complicated than it needs to be okay super simple tip for your blog is sit down with yourself or your team and write a list of your top 20 questions you get from prospective customers okay once you have that list those are your top 20 your first 20 blog posts that you're going to write because somebody calls you a couple of people calling you every month and ask you the same question there are literally hundreds or
Sometimes thousands of people searching online for the same exact thing so...
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sometimes thousands of people searching online for the same exact thing so create a dedicated blog post to answer that question fully and completely on there if you do that you'll you'll turn your blog into a lead magnet for your website okay and all you need to do at that point is just keep it running list as people ask more questions you just keep a log on the spreadsheet or you just write them down and every time you write you sit down to write a new blog post let's go to your list pick a question and answer it as simple as that okay and if you want to try to get ideas and I'll show you just quickly in the next video is go to google and there's another website called answer the public comm and I'll put the link at the end of this video so you can see it a great way to just find some general topic ideas so if you're struggling on ideas or you already did your top 20 blog posts and you're trying to find additional ideas go into Google or answer to public calm or to great places to find additional
Topic ideas okay and lastly if you have multiple locations most businesses don't...
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topic ideas okay and lastly if you have multiple locations most businesses don't but if you haven't have multiple locations in your city or area you want to make sure you have an individual page for each one of these locations look at these location pages as a little home page for each one of your locations okay so time involvement for this probably about two to four hours a month this is probably where you're going to spend the bulk of your time for local SEO kurz creating local contact especially with blog content service pages if you don't have them already broken out into individual pages I'll probably gonna take a little bit of time but if you dedicate it to the four hours a month maybe you know maybe set a goal of creating one new surface page a month or two and one new blog post or two blog posts every month at the end of the year you're gonna have anywhere from 12 to 48 pieces of really good targeted local SEO content on your website and you see if you continue to do this year in and year
Out you can really turn your website into a local SEO powerhouse so let's...
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out you can really turn your website into a local SEO powerhouse so let's jump into the next video I'm gonna give you a little visual of what this looks like so you can understand what I'm talking about so let's take a look at a website so I can show you visually what I'm talking about when it comes to content and also with title tags so here's a website a general contractor website and the first thing I want to show you is how to find a title tag for a page okay so if you're in your browser and you scroll up to the tabs along the top you'll see the text inside those tabs is actually the title tag of the page so this home page here is home renovation and remodeling contractors Toronto your construction company okay so that's what they're trying to rank for home renovation and remodeling contractors Toronto for anyone that's doing a search for that like I said for most cases when you create a new page you add your title that automatically
Becomes the title text so it's not too hard to create you want to put in there...
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becomes the title text so it's not too hard to create you want to put in there what you do and your location and if you have room you can add your business name as well for branding okay so this is your home page like I said as far as content goes and length of content i said 500 words but not necessarily all the time for a home page because a lot of times a home page might be highly visual you're gonna have a lot of different elements on here and having too much text might clutter it up a little bit too much but I'm talking more about service and product pages as well definitely with blog posts okay so here's a home page make sure you have your title tag set for the most important term for your business okay so let's move on to services okay so this is where most small businesses get it wrong they never get past a page like this this is a general service page and it has you know all the different services that the business offers
Sometimes you'll have a sentence to you know of additional content for each one...
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sometimes you'll have a sentence to you know of additional content for each one but when they're all jumbled in together like this Google does not know how to categorize a page like this Google is always looking for one page one meaning so what does this page mean and how can I categorize it somewhere so if you have a lot of different things going on on a page and they're talking about different things Google often does not know what to do with a page like this and most of time it just won't rank it for anything okay but in this case with this site this is just a launching point because each one of these services has an actual full page full service page and this is what it looks like okay so you can see here we have images we have content we have call to actions a schedule an estimate that go to their contact form and you see here there's a lot of content this is about probably about 500 words you're probably looking at close to 500 words here so this is what it looks like you can lay it out the way
You want but this is an example of how you're gonna mix in that much text...
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you want but this is an example of how you're gonna mix in that much text you're not just gonna have a whole wall of 500 words in a row on there it's gonna look pretty bland you break it up a little bit add some visuals and definitely make sure you add a call to action on here every one of these pages you should be thinking that if somebody is only on this page and no other page do I have everything on here for somebody to make a decision to contact me here you got a phone number and you also have a button that takes you to a contact form okay so this is an example of what a service page should look like on here like I said the layout look and layout may be a little bit different but by and large this is kind of what its gonna look like about 500 words some good optimized images on here and a call to action to contact you okay moving on to blog posts we talked about taking your top questions on here and it's an easy way to get content for your blog you can see here the difference between design build and general contractors
Common question can they afford to build a custom home how long does it take to...
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common question can they afford to build a custom home how long does it take to build the custom home so same thing all questions and answers right these are all questions that people have asked this company before and they're just writing blog posts about them okay so let's take a look to see what an individual blog post look like you see here we've got a nice visual at the top we have a call to action to contact this company goes to their contact form and this is about 500 words as well on here you can see less visuals in the service page but this is a nice one at the top one thing that they did here is they broke it up with Kennedy subheaders on here it's a great way to break up a long list of text and helps people to easily see what each sections about so it's a good format to follow like I said about 500 words you want to do and if you can add some visuals break it up a little bit and always make sure that you have a
Good call to action on every page on your website because you never know when...
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good call to action on every page on your website because you never know when someone's gonna feel the need to want to contact you okay so if you want to find some additional ideas or if you're struggling for content ideas things like that just to start start with Google Google will give you a couple good ideas to start with so say you're a home contract or renovation contractor do some searches around there so here we're searching for home renovation contractors if you scroll down here you'll see a lot of times you'll see if people also ask and Google's telling you this is what people ask for how do I find the best contractor what do home contractors do what do general contractors charge how do I protect myself when that's for blog post ideas right here and Google has specifically told you this is what people are asking us on here so a great great way to find some content and also if you scroll down searches related to home contractors you can get some additional ideas here as
Well okay and you can click around play around and you can easily you know five...
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well okay and you can click around play around and you can easily you know five minutes worth of work you can get a whole list of topics that you can write about another place I want to show you and don't worry about writing it down I'll put it in in the course notes so you have the link answer the public is a great place on here it's a little bit wonky looking looking at this guy but it's a fantastic free site you don't even need to register it in order to use it okay so I'm gonna type in something simple like home renovations and see what happens so what's gonna happen now is answer the public is gonna go search Google and pull back a ton of ideas for me so you see here I got 58 questions came back to me if you don't like this visual representation here just click on the data exists here I get a ton of question topics just on that home renovation search I did okay can home renovations be deducted can home renovations be added to their mortgage
How to finance home renovations you know how to DIY your own home renovation so...
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how to finance home renovations you know how to DIY your own home renovation so tons of different ideas on here just a simple search like this you'll get a long list of topics on here and if you look down here you get prepositions as well which can give you some good ideas for additional types of pages on your website right maybe there's were people asking for reviews about certain products or services things like that and could give you some additional ideas for paid different pages that you can create for your website in addition to blog content and like I said I will put the link to this in the course and section notes on this video so don't worry about having to write it down so let's talk about citations what they are how they're used and how to get them for your business now in terms of local SEO citations are simply a mention of your business online if you know anything about regular
Traditional SEO you'll know that getting links from other third party quality...
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traditional SEO you'll know that getting links from other third party quality websites can help boost your website and your webpage is higher in the search results and citations pretty much serve the same thing when it comes to local SEO now with a citation you may have a link to your website or you may not it doesn't really matter it still serves as a citation as long as they're mentioning your business so why does you know the search engines because Google specifically use citations when it comes to local SEO well the main purpose of you know local business is to serve the best business for that searcher okay so if you're Joe's pizza and you have fantastic pizza everybody loves your pizza in your city but you're a terrible marketer you're terrible link builder you have a crappy website that shouldn't matter because people are searching for the best pizza not the best website ok so Google understands this which is why they use citations as kind of the in place of link building
When it comes to local SEO okay because they want to serve the best business...
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when it comes to local SEO okay because they want to serve the best business they can regardless of how good of a online marketer you are okay so it acts as a credibility booster for your business when you can get these third-party citations for your business now citations are broken down into structured citations and unstructured citations a structured citation is simply an orderly format and most of the time you can add these yourself as the business owner so think about adding your business to Yelp or the Yellow Pages or places with directories like that where you sign up you add your business and you add your name address phone number and stuff like that those are structured citations unstructured citations are mentions of your business in a non structured format and that could be somebody talks about you in a blog post or local media writes the five best pizzerias in your town and you're named as one of them those are examples of unstructured citations so where do
You get these types of citations from well number one you can get them from...
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you get these types of citations from well number one you can get them from review platform so you can sign up for places like Yelp Angie's List home stars if you're in Canada and you can add your business add your business information and these serve as a citation for your business so you want to be on these popular platforms because people do visit these sites and it'll help you get more visibility online also online directories like the Yellow Pages where you can go and add your business add your business information to them those are structured two examples of structured citations local media local blogs so somebody's gonna write a review about your business or maybe local media or blogger is going to cover an event that's happening at your business or they're gonna add you in their top ten list or something like that these are examples of unstructured citations okay so these ones you can't do yourself but you can help force the force of those relationships by you know
Identifying who these local media types are who these bloggers are forming...
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identifying who these local media types are who these bloggers are forming relation ships with them on social media things like that so if you do have an event or something is going on with your business you can reach out to them maybe a little cover they'll cover you include them in your their top ten lists or whatever maybe okay another way to get citations and civic organizations nonprofits things like that so an example would be joining the Better Business Bureau not the Better Business Bureau that is a directory citation you can get but your local Chamber of Commerce so that's a local civic organization you can join and every Chamber of Commerce will add all the businesses that a part of their chamber to their website that's a citation on there but other types of civic organizations nonprofits even doing things like sponsoring you know a local soccer team or a local sports team or something like that or a local group if they have a website a lot of times they'll put their sponsors on the website as a thank you a lot of times
You'll get a link back from their site to yours those all served as citations...
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you'll get a link back from their site to yours those all served as citations for your business there's lots of places to to get these things from I'm going to include a download at the end of this video to give you some of the major ones where you can go get citations and you could do them yourself but signing your business up for them and also going to show you in a next video how you can identify some of the specific directories and review sites that are important for your business in your city and to make sure that you're listed so let's talk about citations I want to show you quickly how to find citations that are specifically relevant to your business and your city now there are lots of general citation sources that are pretty much important to everyone but don't worry about those because I'm gonna include a download in this video section where you can download it and you'll have a spreadsheet where you can keep track of those so don't worry about
The general ones I want to show you specifically how you can go and find...
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the general ones I want to show you specifically how you can go and find citation sources that are specific to your business and your city okay so before we start I just want to show you what a structured citation is just in case you're on familiar with it so here we're on Yelp and all this is you know we're on this business right here all the structured citation is is this it's it's your name address phone number of business information laid out in a very specific format in a place like Yelp you sign your business up directly and you add all your information directly and it's all laid out in a very specific format same thing with Yellow Pages here you got a business name you have your name address phone number things like that same thing that's a structured citation it's created and a strict predictable format and a lot of times with citation sources like this the business owner can actually upload you know get an account
Upload their business information directly to the listing okay so if we...
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upload their business information directly to the listing okay so if we want to find additional citation sources specific to our business I want to show you a very easy way to do that okay so say you're a financial planner okay you're a financial planner in Charlotte and you want to find some additional citation sources specific for your business and your industry and your location okay so what we're gonna do is we're gonna do a search for our industry and what we want to do is we want to look at the search results and we want to see what businesses what financial planners are showing up on page one okay and you see here there's a lot of general ones expertise Yelp Angie's List so another specific business but if we come down here we can see one right here so here's the first one that's showing up for financial advisors in Charlotte okay so what we're gonna do is we're gonna click on their website we're gonna go to a
Website and what we're gonna do is we're gonna take their phone number okay and...
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website and what we're gonna do is we're gonna take their phone number okay and we're gonna copy their phone number and what we're gonna do is we're gonna do goes to Google search for their phone number and the reason we're doing this is out of all the out of all the nap attributes your name address phone number phone number is the most unique out of all of them okay sometimes businesses have the same saint business name Joe's pizza John's Pizza things like that you'll even share the same address sometimes if you're in an office park or you're sharing the same you know same building things like that but rarely will anyone ever share the same phone number with another business okay so that's a unique identifier for a business the phone number so what we're gonna do is we're gonna do a search and we're gonna look through the first two or three pages of results and we're going to look for citation opportunities and you can see here number two is one right here next door next door com great
Place to add you know add your business info you see this business has a listing...
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place to add you know add your business info you see this business has a listing on here so nextdoor.com right away is a good one for me I'd write that down you have let's pop back here let's see free free only network that might be more specific to a fee-only network that's specific to financial planners that might be a great opportunity if you're a financial planner very specific to your industry you can see Yelp showing up Budds file never heard of it but you can probably add your business information to it there's a industry association National Association of personal financial advisers so you probably on here but if you're not then absolutely great opportunity you can see here Manta is a great one if you're in the United States to get a free listing on here so you can see how easy it is you know you're gonna go through the first one or two pages of results make a list of all the citation
Opportunities just take five minutes of clicking around to see which ones are...
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opportunities just take five minutes of clicking around to see which ones are good which ones are not super pages is a good one on here and what you're gonna do is you're gonna do the same process for you know three or four different financial planners or competitors that are showing up very high in the search results and see where they're getting their citations from so once you've done some research you'll have a nice list of additional citation sources that you can use to help rank your business entity higher in to local search results so that wraps up our local SEO course I hope I presented this in from in an easy-to-understand way and help you to focus on what really matters and what's going to give you the most impact with your time okay we talked about Google my business and that's all I can think about an hour a month to take care of you're gonna respond to reviews upload new images and add new posts about your business every month your
Website your website's where you're going to spend most of your local SEO...
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website your website's where you're going to spend most of your local SEO time because there's so many opportunities to create different kinds of content for your website so about two to four hours a month is a great place to start and with that you can set a goal of say one new blog post and one new service of product page that's missing on your site every month if you do that at the end of the first year you're going to have 24 highly targeted local SEO pages for your website so you can see if you do that year in and year out over the course of time you're going to have a ton of really targeted content to drive a lot of traffic and get your business a lot of visibility using your website we talked about reviews reviews are super important so the main thing with reviews is to make sure you set up a system where you can get reviews on a consistent basis whatever that ends up looking like okay so that should only take you 1 to 2 hours a month to call people email people follow-up things like that so whatever system you use that's going to work for you is the one
You should go with citations once you get through the initial set up and...
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you should go with citations once you get through the initial set up and identify where you need to be at your business after that about an hour a month you know you may look at some new competitors and see if they're listed anywhere where you're not look for new opportunities popping up or do some outreach to local media local blogs or civic groups things like that and look for opportunities where you can connect with them and maybe get a mention for your business on their website ok so all told you're looking at five to eight hours a month basically less than 10 hours a month to do something that can have a tremendous impact on your business you probably spend more time than this on a single day at a meetup group or something like that but I will tell you if you do this month there with a month the year over year your local SEO is going to have a major impact on the growth of your business so I hope you like the course if you have any questions just make sure you leave them in the course comments and I'll be sure to answer them and no than that good
luck with your local SEO take care
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luck with your local SEO take care

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