Many Internet-based businesses have taken advantage of the fact that their customers don't have to live in their geographical area. EBay is a perfect example of this. If you're trying to sell an item that can be shipped through the mail, your potential customers can live anywhere.
Not all businesses sell items that can be shipped, however. Perhaps you have a basement remodeling company, a hair salon, or an ethnic grocery store. These businesses depend on local patronage, so Internet marketing has to make adjustments. When marketing for a locale-specific business, it's imperative that you use geo-targeted content.
Geo-targeted content refers to a specific location, and it's key to local search success. In fact, according to Google, 73% of online activity is related to local content. So, geo-targeted content should be a big part of your content marketing strategy.
Keywords, including long-tail geo-specific keywords, are critical to an effective local search strategy. Here are some examples:
Vinyl Siding Kansas City, MO
Chinese Buffet Pasadena CA
SAT Prep Miami Florida
You may recognize geo-targeted keyword tactics because you've used them as a consumer. It's Friday night, you're in the mood for pizza, and you're in an unfamiliar city. You turn to your phone and type in "pizza Denver," and before you know it, you're sitting in a red vinyl booth eating breadsticks and waiting for your Canadian bacon pizza. Surely, there are pizza places in Denver that have not taken advantage of geo-targeted keywords, and just as surely, those business owners are missing out.
Why are they missing out? Because adding geo-targeted keywords lowers your local search competition and raises your converting traffic. Let's see how it works.
Lower Your Search Competition
If your LASIK surgery practice has developed a website, you'll show up in the search engine web rankings. A potential customer would type in "LASIK surgery," and roughly 4.3 million hits will show up. If your website is relatively new, you could show up close to the bottom of the rankings, and no one will ever organically happen upon it.
When you use geo-targeted keywords, however, you significantly narrow your competition. A Google search for "LASIK surgery mesa az" yields less than 93,000 results. It will be much easier to rise in the rankings when you narrow the playing field with geo-targeted keywords.
But that's not the only benefit.
Raise Your Converting Traffic
When people search for generic terms like "LASIK surgery," they get hits from all over the world, most of which are completely useless as far as the actual surgery is concerned. This is okay when someone is doing preliminary research. In the case of LASIK surgery, maybe they want to know how much it will cost, what the risks are, and how long it takes to recover. This is all useful information, but it doesn't necessarily convert into business for the website owners.
However, when potential customers use geo-targeted keywords like "LASIK surgery mesa az," they're much more likely to find local practitioners who can help them. These searches convert into phone calls, appointments, and paying customers. This kind of traffic flow leads people from the distance-based contact provided by the internet to an interpersonal-based relationship, which is the core of locale-specific businesses.
As you experiment with geo-targeted keywords, keep a close eye on your website's analytics. Your analytics will tell you if your geo-targeted keywords are increasing traffic, and if they are, where that traffic is coming from. Pay attention to details like this because you can home in on which keywords work best for driving traffic to your website and focus more pages and more blog post content on those keywords.
Don't miss out on local business that you could easily reach through geo-targeted content. Someone may be just blocks from you right now, looking for a service that you provide, typing your keywords into a search engine. If you're buried at the pile of a global search, they won't find you. But if you show up in their neighborhood search, Bingo! Your bottom line looks better today.
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