Even though you’re a brick and mortar business owner, you should still have a good grasp on the importance of creating an online presence. More and more people are using the Internet to find local businesses, which means you could be missing an opportunity if you haven’t optimized your website for local search.
It’s crucial to take this strategy a step further though by optimizing your social networks. Social profiles are quickly finding their way into the top spots of search results, claiming prime positioning and visibility. You’re no longer just trying to outrank the websites of your competitors; you’re also trying to outrank their network profiles.
While you may not be able to include your full company address on every site, there are still plenty of optimization opportunities you shouldn’t ignore. Here are just a few easy tips to get you started.
Creating a Facebook Page for your local business is a great way to give your brand a voice and advertise your company online. When setting up the page, select “Local Business or Place” from the six options available. You’ll then be prompted to fill in a form that requests your industry category, business name, address information, and contact number. Once the page is active, you can edit your profile to include your website URL, trading hours, and general business information.
Although users can easily see your physical address at the top of your page, Facebook makes it easier to find the exact location of your business by automatically providing a map within the “About” section of your profile.
LinkedIn Company Page
Recently, LinkedIn introduced a fresh look for its Company Pages and added several awesome features, including the ability to access Company Pages on its Andriod, iPhone, and iPad apps. You can read more on the LinkedIn Blog, but for the purposes of this post, we’re going to focus on optimizing your account for local search. Even if you have a page set up for your business, there’s no harm in checking out the new features and making sure your page is optimized.
The first thing you want to do is edit your LinkedIn Company Page once you’ve created it. You’ll find the “Edit” button in the top right-hand corner. Once you click it, you’ll see several fields that need to be filled in with your business details. What you need to concentrate on for local search is the area towards the bottom of the page that says “Company Locations.”
Make certain the address details displayed in this section are correct and that they’re reflected in the same way you’ve added your business address to your website and any online directories. Simply click the “Add another location link” if you have two or more locations.
To optimize your Twitter account, you simply need to make a few adjustments to your profile information. Edit your profile to include your business name, location, website address, and bio. Be sure to include strategic keywords within your bio for optimum results, as well as any relevant information that would better help potential customers find you offline.
Create a descriptive bio populated with targeted keywords, add your website URL, and include your location in the relevant fields provided when editing your profile information. Your pinboards will show up in search engine results, which increases your chances of your target audience finding you.
If you have yet to claim your business venue on this location-based check-in app, now would be the time to do so. When you sign up, make certain you use your business name and the appropriate location details. You will then need to verify your authority to claim the location after creating your account. Foursquare offers some nifty features, such as sharing your activity with your other social media networks and offering specials to attract new customers, so explore the site for marketing opportunities.
Google+ for Business
When joining Google+ for Business, you’ll find there are five options from which to choose. As with Facebook, you should select “Local Business or Place.” Once you set up your page, you need to customize it by editing your public profile information. Here you need to focus on adding a tagline with targeted keywords, images that represent your brand and offerings, an introduction to your business, contact information and your address, and relevant links to your website and other social media profiles. Not only will your tagline show up in Google+ searches, but a map of your location will also display on your profile page.
Monitoring Your Results
No matter which marketing strategies you implement online, it is critical to monitor your progress so that you know you’re achieving your desired results. In this case, you want to ensure you’re reaching and engaging individuals who are within your targeted regions. Check your analytics for information on your demographics and make changes if necessary. You may find you need to publish more location-specific content, or employ tactics designed to boost audience growth within a specific region.
By ensuring your social media profiles are optimized and that they include the correct address details, you potentially increase referral traffic, walk-ins, and revenue. The most important thing is to make sure your profiles are accessible to the public. If they do not show up in search results, you’ve wasted your time and energy while your local competitors are reaping the rewards of their social optimization.
Have you optimized your social networks for local SEO? Share your tips in the comment section below.