SEO and SEO Local

What is SEO?
Improving your place on the search results page is called Search Engine Optimization (SEO). In addition to traditional SEO, if someone is searching for a local product/service (for example, ‘therapist in San Francisco Bay Area’), the first page of search results now often has more entries for Google My Business and Yelp reviews than actual websites. So SEO must now consider all the ways to be visible on the first page of search results.

What I Include in My SEO Project:
In addition to the traditional SEO recommendations, I always include the extra items that can make the difference between ranking on the first page of search engine results or not. I work with you to resolve any issues that detract from SEO:
– Ideal URLs, Page Titles, ALT Image tags, link tags, content (traditional SEO).
– Number of backlinks compared to your primary competitors.
– Website download speed (how long it takes your website to display).
– Website errors that Google detected which negatively impacts your SEO.

How Does SEO Local Work?
If you offer your service/product locally, it involves three primary areas:
1. Maximize how high your website ranks when people search for keywords important to your service or product (e.g., ‘watch repair in San Francisco Bay Area’). This is traditional SEO.
2. Create and optimize a Google My Business (previously called Google Places) listing and get customers to leave reviews.
3. Create and optimize a Yelp Business listing and get customers to leave reviews.

SEO can lead to amazing results, like increasing traffic to your website by 200%-400%. That’s search engine web marketing !!!

What Should I Do First?

The very first thing I do (for free) is determine whether due to the large number of entrenched web competitors (like associations in your industry), there is little chance you can achieve good keyword rankings even if you implement a full SEO project. I sometimes suggest the difficult advice not to spend the time and money on SEO because of this. I may lose you as a client, but maybe I gained a friend. If you pass this test, then I recommend the following –

These first tasks should always be done at the beginning of an SEO project. Sometimes the results of this initial step may indicate a full SEO project will bring great results, but sometimes it may indicate an SEO project is not necessary:
1. Keyword Research including pertinent geographies.
2. Run Keyword Rankings Report to see how your website currently ranks for your primary keywords.
3. Run Backlinks Report comparing your website to your top 3 competitors’ websites.
4. Submit a written report of results and analyses.

Possible Outcome #1:
Your website’s keyword rankings for your primary keywords are already pretty good.
These results indicate you don’t need further SEO.
Possible Outcome #2:
Your website’s keyword rankings for your primary keywords are poor. Perhaps you also have many fewer backlinks than your top competitors.
These results indicate an SEO project will help improve your website traffic, perhaps significantly. It also gives us a targeted list of keywords important to focus on which reduces the effort and cost compared to an SEO project that includes unnecessary keywords.

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