The importance of local search engine optimization or SEO can no longer be underestimated particularly when a large number of companies are getting benefited from local SEO through increased footfall and sales. However, when it comes to big brands, the picture is somewhat surprising. The large enterprises and MNCs are unable to reap the benefits of local SEO although they have money, time and talent to outnumber the small brick-and-mortar stores.
There are basically two key issues that are making the companies struggle in the field of local search engine optimization.
1. Lack of data verification
The companies often fail to update the NAP’s of all the web stores over time. This leads to the potential customers being unable to locate a particular store at times of need. Moreover, lack of verification of other important data such as store hours, services on offer, URLs of the websites, special incentives or discounts, images, and such other local elements prevent the big brands from leveraging the potentiality of local SEO in 2015.
The solution: The best possible way to curb this problem is by gathering all modified data from the hundreds and thousands of web stores and then uploading the same in a central integrated database that is cloud-based. As the owner of a big brand, you can request the store managers to submit from time to time all essential information and data to keep them up-to-date for easily attracting the audiences and increasing sales.
2. Inaccurate listings
Most brands make a very common mistake of providing wrong or outdated location information on such popular local directories like Google Places, Yelp, Foursquare, Bing, or Yahoo Local. You must always verify and cross-verify information that you add in any local listing sites. Failing to do so will lead to Google unable to rank your store high on its organic search engine results. Actually, Google, Bing or Yahoo bots crawl through location information to take the decision as to which store location to show first in its search results.
The solution: So, it is relevant to keep the Name, Address, and Phone numbers correct and updated for higher listing on all major search engines, local directories and local data publishers. Google My Business can be used to keep all data updated across Google search, Google Maps and Google+ for instant detecting your store location by the local customers. Moreover, many enterprises face the problem of having duplicate information. This issue can easily be tackled by accessing third-party listing services like Yext or Moz Local that successfully suppresses or re-routes duplicate catalogue.
There are many companies that successfully manage data and listings; however, they are still unable to improve their sales graph. Let’s look at some of the other aspects that may hinder your business growth.
Creation of mobile-friendly pages –
Every brick-and-mortar store should have its own mobile-friendly website with updated name, address, contact number, services offered, opening and closing time of the store, and such other crucial details.
Instant loading of pages –
Your website’s pages must load quickly for easy viewing by maximum customers especially the mobile users. Quick page loading is directly related to a great user experience!
Clicks from search results –
Getting maximum customers from search engines should be any big brand’s first priority. Sites having high click-through rate (CTR) get a high ranking in local search engine results. Each page of your website must have keyword-rich meta tags, meta description along with structured data markup or representation.