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Tips to Increase Traffic through Local Keywords

Posted May 15th 2009 Search Engine Optimization

Do you know how local SEO can help you increase traffic to your website? Many businesses are intrigued by the idea of reaching a global audience. While this is a respectable goal for many businesses, it’s important not to underestimate the potential that lies in a local keyword search. When you optimize your site for local audience, you can take full advantage of these opportunities for your business.

A local search, or regional search, works for online retailers with numerous locations or also for a service provider. When you optimize for local keywords, you can bring in targeted customers which results in higher conversion rates and increased sales. If the visitor knows you’re in the area and you are convenient to them, they will be more likely to try your product or services and more likely to return as a repeat customer.

So how can you increase traffic by optimizing with local keywords? First, you need to know where to be listed. It’s helpful to get listed in Yahoo Local, Google Local, Merchant Circle, Yelp.com and similar local search engines that target local audiences.

Once listed in these local search engines, you can help increase your ranking with local keywords by location, keywords and reviews. The closer you are to the center of the map, the better it seems to be. The more targeted your keywords are in the local search, the better your ranking will be and the more positive reviews you can get for your business, the better you will be.

There are different tactics that work and a specialist in SEO will be best able to help you choose your keywords but here are some general things to know about local SEO:

  • Avoid keywords that are too generic- you won’t rank high for general terms. There is also the problem that with generic terms, the person may not be looking to buy. Use words that specify what you want the visitor to do- buy a product, submit their info, request a consultation, etc.
  • Use caution when choosing your keywords- for local SEO, you need to be specific with your keywords. It’s often best to consult with an SEO expert before choosing the keywords you want.
  • Keywords should indicate an action- What is your “call to action”? Your keywords should reflect what you want to visitor to do when they come to your site.
  • The goal is not to get the most traffic possible but the most targeted- Getting tons of visitors to your site will mean nothing if they are not interested in what you have to offer. Large amounts of traffic that doesn’t convert leads to wasted time and money.

Remember that with local SEO you need to include keywords along with a city and state to show up locally. For example, if you are an electrician from the Detroit area, you might use “Detroit electrician” or “hire Detroit electrician” as local keywords.

Local SEO can keep you focused on specific targeted visitors who will be interested in what you are offering. This results in higher conversion rates which makes your time and money spent well worth it.