Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Google+ Local can Kill Your SEO Strategy

Sure, everyone wants PPC and everyone wants content. After a while, you may be hassling your marketing agency on why you are not number one in Google yet, but how does your Google+ page look? The reality is, is takes a lot of time and patience to rank in Google organically via a content strategy. At the end of the day, your site’s fate falls in their hands. One of the best things that you can do, is build out your Google+ Local page.

Google+ Local is an extremely crucial element of your local SEO strategy, since it drives your company’s results on Google Maps.

Think about it: If I want to find the best Italian restaurant in Miami, Florida, and I search Google for just that, if your Italian restaurant does not have a Google+ Local page with reviews, you might not even show up in my results.

One of the biggest pitfalls for businesses when it comes to using Google+ Local, is thinking that you can just create your listing page and be done; never sharing and updating content, and never completing Circle Outreach. Without Circle Outreach, even if your posts are set to “public”, your reach will not be as wide as it could be.

When completing Circle Outreach, think of your consumer demographic. If you are an Italian restaurant in Miami, essentially you could add any Miami resident to your Circles; so search for “Miami Circle” and try to find some residents and maybe even business offices surrounding your restaurant, to add to your Circles.  Building out your Circles will allow the content that you share to reach those people, allowing them to share your content or +1 it if they choose. It will also create brand awareness for your company by word-of-mouth, or by people in your Circles converting into customers.

Using your page to create brand awareness: After you setup your Google+ location page, it is important that you do not forget about it. Updating it is part of what makes your page relevant and can drive reviews. If you are an Italian restaurant, make sure that your address and phone number are correct. Then, add pictures of your cuisine, share events that will be taking place there, add photos of the interior, exterior, parties, and etc. Create posts of specialty menu items and chef’s specials.  The more that you share, the more that the people in your local Circles will see, and the higher your chances of gaining customers who will leave reviews will be. When you share content, make sure that you include keywords that target your industry; you can even hashtag them in your posts. Another content sharing tip: share content from your Facebook or Twitter, so that you draw a following on there as well. 

Perhaps one of the most important Google+ Local practices for your business – encourage consumers to leave a review.  The reviews will show in Google search results and can convert online local search consumers into in-the-door customers. For even the most competitive industries, having a lot of Google reviews (that give you a good star-rating) WILL get customers in the door.

Example: Search Google for “personal injury attorney” and these are the results that you will see (in Fort Lauderdale, FL).

These results are not organic search results in terms of content, they are organic in the sense that they are Google+ location pages (Google Maps) and the location's Google+ reviews. These results, in a perfect world, are easier to result as a facet of organic results, rather than content oriented organic search results. As a consumer, you would most likely choose the attorney with the highest rating, from the highest amount of reviews.

Tandem Interactive can help build out your Google+ location pages, so that you receive reviews and get customers in the door. 

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