Here's how to improve your Search Engine Optimisation techniques for your eCommerce site. This will help improve your result page ranking compared to other local businesses.
If you have an ecommerce site which relies on local searchers and customers, even if only partly, here is 10 ways to improve SEO practices to improve local traffic and conversions.
1- Setup your Google My Business listing ASAP because this is vital to make sure you are included in the prime on-page real estate location of Google local results. Here, they are shown in a rich box as the first competitive resutls on page 1:
Making sure this is done means you also show up as a pin on Google maps. This makes it appear to searchers that you are trustworthy and top of the list when it comes to the decision process.
As most of the searches you are targeting will be done on mobile and users are likely to incure a micro-moment, making sure you appear as viable an option as possible is vital to success.
Google My Business is key to this. Working in conjunction with this is your on-page SEO.
All of the remaining items need to be included on-page and in your Google My Business profile...
2- Choose the right business category on Google My Business, Yell and other directory sites because this helps correctly channel search queries more often. Make sure you have a corresponding presence on every directory site you can find: 118, Bing, Yahoo, "whats on in [your area]" sites, Facebook... You can even just set up a couple a day for the next month to stop it becoming an arduous task.
3- Include photos on your site and Google My Business (GMB) profile of your logo, entrance, staff, customers and physical space. Also make sure you include optimized alt-text so that crawls of your site pick up what the images relate to.
4- Keep contact info upto date and consistent across the board. This could be a potentially quick win. I spent some time, last week, trying to contact local businesses on behalf of a sports club I'm a member of. A shocking amount (I'd say half) had out-of-date contact telephone numbers, email addresses and links to pages. Even postal addresses were either missing or out-of-date. Getting this sorted could get you a step ahead of the local competition. Make sure all addresses, telephone numbers and names are consistent accross every page, GMB and all other directory listings.
5- Include opening information even if it isn't necessarily relevant and you can process purchases the next day, include your operating hours because this is probably one of the most frequent pieces of information that searchers will be looking for.
6- Get real reviews from local customers and encourage social check-ins because they have a double-fold effect of boosting your ranking and performance: potential customers are reassured by them and Google will see that you are reliable and trustworthy and boost your ranking accordingly. Invite customers to leave a review on your directory listing pages and build up the number over time.
7- Use Schema Markup to help highlight key info and events to spiders crawling your site. Including this into the code in your footer (a handy place to conveniently showcase contact, location and opening information on every page) will really help make Google's job easier when ranking your site. Read more about Schema and how to implement it, here.
8- Target links from local high domain authority sites such as related businesses (a car parts dealer targeting local minicab firms, restaurant supplier targeting popular establishments, and so on). Also, look to get links on local press, online publications, local award schemes sites and even local colleges and schools if you can offer work experience or workshop opportunities.
9- Optimise pages with local keywords to make sure you are really targeting LOCAL searchers for your niche, not just users located anywhere who are interested in your niche. Obviously, avoid this if you don't need custom from those who are based solely in the area.
10- Start building up your Google+ reviews. Given that using Schema to manipulate your average review scores has been rooted out, it's a safe bet to start prioritising your business' Google+ account. Even if what many are predicting (the platform being a major ranking factor for Google) doesn't prove to be true, it can't do any harm whatsoever.
Beyond these 10 factors, all other relevant inbound and SEO good practice rules apply.
Make sure your content and copy is as high a quality as possible and you're doing everything you can to generally boost your Search Engine Optimisation techniques.
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