In grade school I remember reading Ralph Waldo Emerson’s famous quote, “A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds” and for some reason it stuck with me. Probably because it’s the only instance I know of where “hobgoblin” was successfully used in a sentence. :)
In case you’re not familiar with that quote, Emerson was saying it’s foolish to stay consistent out of fear of others thinking you’re contradicting yourself. In other words, it’s OK to change your mind when new information becomes available.
This is solid advice, unless we’re talking about local search engine optimization (SEO). With local SEO, consistency is one of the most important factors! Let’s take a look in this article at 3 key areas where you would be foolish to not be consistent.
When researching local SEO, you’ll hear a lot of references to your NAP. That’s simply an acronym for Name, Address and Phone number. Those are 3 important data points that Google analyzes across the internet to determine the correct information to display in their search results. Obviously, Google needs to display accurate information or else their search results will not be very helpful for their users.
Think about this from Google’s perspective. How do they know for sure if your NAP is correct? Yes, they can look at your website, but is that information up-to-date and accurate? The answer is they can’t be sure.
Their solution is to scour the internet and compare the information on other websites like business directories. If they see that your name, address and phone number (NAP) are 100% consistent, then that is a strong signal that the information is accurate. This is why a consistent NAP across the internet is so important for local SEO. If there are any inconsistencies, then that will hurt your rankings in Google.
Now we know one of the big factors in local SEO is a consistent NAP.
Another factor in local SEO is the quality and quantity of links from other websites. This has always been a big factor in SEO and it hasn’t changed. The more high quality links to your website, the better you’ll rank in Google.
You probably already know this, but the million dollar question is, HOW? How do you get other websites to link to your website?
The answer is consistent content. By that I mean publishing high quality and relevant articles, videos and infographics on your website that other people would want to share with their audiences. There are lots of other tactics to get links, but by far the best long term strategy is via consistently publishing high-quality content.
Finally, another factor in local SEO is online reviews. Businesses that receive reviews consistently have an advantage in Google.
Again, think about this from Google’s perspective. They want to show their users the best local businesses and how could they not take into account online reviews from previous customers? Reviews are a great signal that you’re still in business and that you’re providing great products and services.
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- How to quickly find the best keywords in your market
- 2 easy website edits to boost your Google local rankings
- 30 directories every business should get listed in, ASAP
- Step-by-step how to optimize your Google+ Local listing
- 3 common over-optimization mistakes to avoid
- Tips, templates & tools for getting authentic happy reviews
- And much more…
Plus, I’ll stay on the line to answer all of your questions about Local SEO.