Owning a business means utilizing marketing, and today, digital marketing is the most effective way to reach your clients no matter what type of industry you are in. Specifically, search engine optimization (SEO) is at the core of this process as it allows you to reach your customers who are using Google to look for a solution to their problem.
However, the way and functional components of the SEO strategies you adopt may be different if you are a brick and mortar business, one where customers come into your shop, compared to a service area business where you head to your customers.
Are You a Service-Area Business?
A service area business needs to tap into local SEO strategies that allow people within a geographic area to find you. For example, you operate your business physically from an office in one city, but you go to client locations throughout the entire metro area. In this situation, you need to be found by clients throughout that entire area.
To be successful with local SEO, you need to ensure your prospective clients throughout that region can find your business when searching for a solution to their problem. As a result, you will need to use keywords that apply more to the entire region, which may include multiple large city names of areas where you serve.
Examples of service-area businesses may include:
- Landscaping companies
- Heating and cooling companies
- Towing companies
- Roofing companies
If the work you do takes you to the client’s location, you fall under this area for local SEO strategies. Your service area business SEO should be based on keyword research that includes a full understanding of your target audience and how they find your business. Local SEO for service area businesses is a bit more unique because you are targeting people from a much larger area.
Your SEO strategies should focus on several key areas:
- Define your service area: Ensure that you have a clearly defined service area and outline all of the cities you serve. You will use this to help with keyword optimization for those city names on your website and block.
- Claim your Google Business Profile: Your GBP is a listing within Google that pops up when someone types in the services you offer within your area. Within your profile, you will want to list specifically what your service area is.
- Build out your website to focus on the service area: When creating keyword optimized website pages and blogs, you’ll want to focus not just on the city your offices are located in but on the entire service area. This will help you to build a website that Google sees as valuable to people throughout the region.
Are You a Brick-and-Mortar Business?
A brick-and-mortar business is one in which people come into your location for service. Here, you may have customers that come from throughout the region you wish to encourage you to visit, but they come to you, and you provide them with a service at your location.
As a brick-and-mortar business, it becomes critical for you to be able to communicate that location not just with your customers but also with Google. Let’s say you are a retail shop, and a customer is looking for a shop near them that offers a product you offer. Typically, a person on their mobile phone will look for shops near them, and Google will display those within a certain radius. If you are located within that area, your location is recommended to the searcher. Conversely, many customers will simply Google the type of company they need and the city name of where they want to shop.
Some examples of brick-and-mortar businesses include:
SEO for brick and mortar businesses still needs to be very robust and highly researched. You need to target the keywords your clients are looking for primarily when seeking a provider within their area.
Your SEO strategies as a brick-and-mortar shop may be a bit different than for service providers:
- Google Business Profile: Your GBP is still a very valuable tool and one you need to complete. However, in this situation, you will list the specific city where your physical location is. That will provide Google with information on when to present your business as a viable option.
- Local pages: Your website needs to include location pages. These will target the specific location your business operates within, and that typically means ensuring that the physical location of your company is the primary keyword you are ranking for (along with the service or product you offer).
- Location pages for multiple locations: If your business is a physical location, but you have more than one location customers can visit, you will need location pages for each of those locations. This helps you to rank for each location.
Customizing Your SEO for Brick and Mortar Business or Service Business
In all situations, your goal should be to create a comprehensive SEO strategy. This should include addressing the following:
- Keyword research based on what your target customers are imputing
- Title tags, meta descriptions, and other content that is geared towards your local SEO strategies
- Blog posts and website content that’s locally driven and built out
- Highly targeted content that provides valuable information to your readers that will spur them to take action
- Content that helps your business to stand out against the competitors
Local SEO strategies are a critical foundation for success in every digital marketing strategy for local companies. With slight differences, it becomes possible for you to create an optimized website and marketing plan that helps people find you in a way that makes sense for meeting their needs.
Townsquare Interactive Helps Your Business Grow
The team at Townsquare Interactive has the tools to help all businesses, whether brick-and-mortar or service companies, to ensure their marketing dollars get the best possible results. Work with our marketing specialists to create a comprehensive policy that can create a strategy that achieves your best outcome.