Web Services Blog
Local SEO for Service Providers: How to Find the
Right SEO Service to Grow Your Business
Search engine optimization (SEO) has become crucial for businesses looking to get found online and drive more customers to their website. Local SEO for service providers can help you dominate your market by getting your business ranked high in local search results. This allows you to tap into customer intent and increase visibility when local searches are performed for the services you offer. In summary, SEO for service providers is super important!
In this comprehensive guide, we’ll cover everything service companies need to know about leveraging local SEO for service providers to maximize their reach, boost conversions, and outrank competitors in 2023.
Why Invest in Local SEO Services?
For service companies like plumbers, electricians, contractors, lawyers, dentists, and more, targeting local customers is key. An effective local SEO strategy can help you:
Reach more prospects searching for local services like yours. Over 50% of mobile searches have local intent.
Build trust and credibility by ranking high for service-related keywords in your area.
Generate more calls, form fills, emails, and conversions from your website.
Compete with national brands targeting your region. Local SEO levels the playing field.
Expand your digital presence across search engines, maps, directories, and review sites.
Improve your visibility and connection to customers in a specific geographic region.
Reinforce your brand and expertise in servicing a particular locality.
In short, local SEO is about putting your business in front of people who are looking for exactly what you offer, when it matters most – during the research phase. Hiring a local SEO company can help you dominate the local market.
Here are some specific reasons investing in professional local SEO services can pay dividends for service providers:
Increased website traffic. By optimizing your site and content for local search, you’ll draw more visitors from searches for relevant service keywords in your region. The majority of searches have local intent.
Higher conversion rates. Warm traffic from local SEO converts better because they are specifically looking for a business like yours in your geographic area. Targeted leads convert more often.
Improved brand visibility. Ranking well for local services builds awareness so you become top-of-mind. New customers will seek you out and trust you more.
Bigger customer reach. Many prospects search for services online before buying. Local SEO allows you to reach all those prospects in your service area at that critical research stage.
Better user experience. Providing a fast, mobile-friendly website with easy access to locations, contact info, and scheduling improves UX. SEO enhances this.
Measurable ROI. With call tracking, form tracking, and analytics, you can directly see how much business local SEO delivers. The ROI is clear.
Level playing field. Local SEO lets you compete with larger national brands targeting your market. You can rank above them with an optimized local strategy.
When it comes to profitability and growth for service businesses, embracing local SEO is one of the smartest investments you can make. Done right, it delivers results.
Key Elements of an Effective Local SEO for Service Providers - Strategy
Successful local SEO requires optimizing every aspect of your digital presence for local findability. Here are some key elements to include in your strategy:
Optimized Google My Business Listing
A complete Google My Business profile signals Google that your business serves a local area. Optimizing your listing with accurate info, good photos, persuasive descriptions, and customer reviews is vital for local SEO. (Resource: Google)
Targeting hyperlocal keywords that include your service type and geographic location allows you to reach local searchers. For a Denver plumber, that could be “plumber Denver” or “emergency plumber Aurora, CO”.
Citations and Directories
Having your NAP (name, address, phone number) listed consistently across 50+ directories, review sites like Yelp, and local citation sources reinforces your local authority.
Reviews and Reputation
Positive local reviews on Google, Facebook, and industry sites like Houzz build trust and social proof. A good reputation means higher local rankings.
Blog posts and web pages that focus on serving your geographic area with locally optimized content can improve relevance.
Local Link Building
Getting high-quality local links from directory listings, other local businesses, newspapers, and city websites shows locality.
Having geo-targeted landing pages, contact pages, location pages, and service pages that include your city and region helps a lot.
Mobile-Friendly, Local Site
With over 50% of searches on mobile, having a fast, mobile-friendly website with easy contact forms and click-to-call is necessary.
Here’s more detail on some of the most important local SEO elements:
Optimized Google My Business Listing
Google My Business (GMB) has become the digital headquarters for local businesses. Optimizing every aspect of your GMB listing can have a big impact on local SEO:
Complete your business information 100% with accurate details.
Upload high-quality photos of your location, team, work, and products/services.
Write detailed service descriptions using keywords. Highlight your expertise.
Add your hours, special offerings, seasonal services, and anything timely.
Respond to all reviews quickly – positive and negative. Ask satisfied customers for reviews.
Post regular updates showcasing company news, awards, community involvement, and events.
Ensure your category and services line up accurately with what you do.
Verify your listing for maximum visibility and connect it to Google Analytics.
Powerful Local Content
Optimizing your on-site content for local SEO is hugely important. Some tips:
Write blog posts that answer common questions from local customers about your services. Use your city/town names.
Create detailed service pages that explain exactly how you help local customers with that specific offering.
Have a local area page showcasing what you do for that particular neighborhood or region.
Ensure all pages targeting local customers include your full business name, address, and phone number.
Get local business schema markup on your site for richer snippets.
Update site content regularly with fresh blogs, new service pages, area pages, and local resources.
Make sure page titles, headers, image names, and alt text include location keywords.
Citations and Directories
Citations are extremely powerful for reinforcing your local relevance.
Manually submit your updated business NAP to 50+ directories like Yelp, Yellowpages, Citysearch.
List your business on industry-specific directories related to your field – for lawyers, dentists, contractors, etc.
Get added to your local chamber of commerce, visitor bureau, and tourism sites.
Claim and optimize profiles on popular review sites like Yelp, TripAdvisor, Houzz, etc.
List your business on your municipal website directory if one exists.
Confirm all local citations are fully consistent with your business name, address and phone number.
Staying on top of citations, directory listings, and review sites is vital for stronger local SEO. It improves visibility across the entire local business ecosystem.
Questions to Ask - Local SEO for Service Providers
Not all SEO agencies are created equal when it comes to local search marketing. Here are some key questions to ask when vetting providers:
Do You Focus Specifically on Local SEO?
Many SEO companies handle local SEO as an afterthought. Look for specialists with proven success ranking local businesses. Ask for local client references.
What Is Your Local SEO Process?
A solid strategy should include optimizing your GMB listing, directories, reviews, citations, content, and technical website elements on an ongoing basis.
How Do You Track and Report Results?
Local ranking reports, Google Analytics data, call and form tracking, and ROI reporting should be standard. Expect regular, detailed reports.
What Will You Do to Improve My Local Reach?
Onboarding audits, GMB optimization, link building, review generation, landing page creation, site speed improvements, and content creation should be discussed.
How Do You Learn About Google Updates?
Google algorithm updates can impact local results. Working with experts who stay on top of changes and best practices is key for sustainable rankings.
What Makes Your Local SEO Approach Unique?
Look for custom solutions suited to your specific business and region, not cookie-cutter campaigns. Local SEO requires tailored strategies.
Finding an SEO company with proven expertise in ranking local businesses can help unlock your growth potential online. Use these questions to find the best fit!
Here are some additional questions to ask prospective SEO agencies:
Do you have experience optimizing sites in my specific industry?
How long have you been specializing in local SEO services?
Do you offer SEO packages or only custom solutions? What does pricing look like?
How can you help me differentiate from top local competitors also targeting my keywords?
How quickly can I expect to see improvements in local rankings and traffic?
What strategies will you use to build high-quality local links?
How can you expand my reach in other high-value geographic regions beyond my existing service area?
How will you optimize my website for speed and performance?
Do you provide advice on converting more phone and on-site leads from SEO?
Can I speak directly to the account manager that would handle our relationship?
What happens if my account manager leaves your agency someday?
Outside of SEO, what other digital marketing services do you provide that could benefit my business?
How can I track the phone calls and forms generated specifically by your local SEO efforts?
Thoroughly vetting agencies on their experience, strategies, reporting, and results can help you make a wise investment in local SEO services for long-term success.
10 Best Practices for DIY Local SEO
For businesses on a tight budget, handling your own basic local SEO activities can offer a good baseline before eventually investing in professional services. Here are 10 best practices:
Fully optimize your Google My Business listing – provide complete, accurate business info, add good photos, encourage customer reviews, regularly post updates and offers.
Build local links – get listed on relevant local directories, chambers of commerce, municipality sites, local association pages, neighborhood pages, etc.
Prioritize local content – blog about topics relevant to customers in your area and include your city, county and state names. Answer their questions.
Improve on-site SEO – optimize page titles, URLs, headers, image names and alt text for your location and service keywords. Make your home page about your locality.
Get local citations – manually list your business name, address and phone number consistently on free directories like Yelp, Yellowpages, Superpages.
Encourage reviews – proactively request reviews from customers on Google, Facebook, Yelp, and any vertical directories related to your industry. Monitor and respond.
Enhance site speed – use caching plugins, image compression, minimal plugins and mobile-friendly design to help local site speed. Don’t let tech issues impact SEO.
Create geo-targeted pages – have distinct location pages, contact pages, and service pages optimized for different regions you serve.
Engage locally – introduce yourself to local reporters, bloggers, chambers, and associations. Look for community partnership opportunities, sponsorships and networking events.
Analyze results – track your local organic traffic, rankings, and conversions over time. Tweak your efforts based on what delivers results.
Focusing on these DIY tactics can help lay the groundwork while you save up budget to eventually invest in professional services. Here are a few more tips for boosting your own local SEO:
Research what service-related keywords your competitors rank for in your city, and start targeting those keywords.
Update old content to become more locally-focused. Swap out generic references for your actual town names.
Add schema markup to your site to generate rich results, especially LocalBusiness schema highlighting your address.
Build internal links to your optimized, locally-targeted service pages from related blog posts and other site pages.
Work local keywords naturally into content rather than awkwardly over-optimizing. Write for customers first.
Explore Google Search Console for insights on current local rankings and click-through-rate for key terms. Identify optimization opportunities.
Treat optimizing your Google My Business listing like a full time job. Keep it updated, respond to reviews, add offers and posts.
Reach out to local partners to see if they would be willing to link to your site content from their own site.
Focusing on these DIY tactics can help lay the groundwork while you save up budget to eventually invest in professional services.
Warning Signs It's Time to Hire a Local SEO Company
Here are some red flags that it may be time to call in an expert local SEO agency:
You’ve stopped ranking for important local keywords that you used to own.
Your website traffic from local searches has dropped noticeably.
Competitors are outranking you for your most crucial service-related keywords.
You don’t have the time or in-house expertise to focus on local SEO fully.
Your Google My Business listing has outdated information, poor photos, or no reviews.
You have inconsistent business citations and NAP information across directories.
Your online reputation is suffering from lack of monitoring and management.
Your on-site content barely targets your geographic service area.
You aren’t set up to track phone calls, form fills, or source of leads from SEO.
You want to expand your reach in additional cities and regions.
If any of these issues describe your current situation, hiring a local SEO agency may be the fastest path to regaining local visibility and converting more local searchers. Don’t leave business on the table.
Here are some more signs it may be time to call in reinforcements with professional local SEO:
You’ve lost local rankings from recent Google updates, and don’t know how to recover.
Your website traffic and leads have plateaued from your own ongoing SEO efforts.
You keep finding new duplicate business listings on directories that need to be claimed and reconciled.
Your competitors have grown their local search presence substantially in recent months.
Customers mention finding you deep in local search results rather than on page one.
Your conversion rates from your website remain low after months of DIY SEO work.
You lack the technical SEO skills needed to diagnose and resolve site problems impacting performance.
You’re not tracking the right SEO KPIs locally to even know if your efforts are working.
Managing your local reputation, citations, content, and links feels like a losing battle.
When you are ready to take your local SEO to the next level, an experienced digital marketing agency can give you the expertise and extra capacity needed to dominate your market.
6 Benefits of Working with a Local SEO Company
Partnering with local SEO professionals that understand your market and competitors can offer multiple advantages:
1. Increased Reach and Brand Awareness
Expanding your visibility in local search results translates directly into more potential customers that are ready to buy. SEO drives qualified traffic and leads.
2. Improved Search Rankings and Traffic
Expert optimization of your GMB listing, website, and overall digital presence can get you ranked higher locally for the terms that matter most.
3. Ongoing Management and Optimization
With an SEO company, you benefit from ongoing monitoring, upkeep, content improvements, and technical site health – not just one-time fixes.
4. Measurable ROI and Insights
The right agency will report on rankings, traffic, leads, and phone call tracking so you can quantify your return on investment.
5. Competition With Bigger Brands
A strategic local SEO campaign helps level the playing field so you can go toe-to-toe with larger national companies.
6. In-House Team of SEO Experts
No need to hire, train and manage dedicated in-house SEO staff. Leave it to proven specialists dedicated to your success.
The smartest investment is in a solutions partner that takes time to understand your business, goals, and challenges. They can tailor an ongoing local SEO strategy to yield tangible results month after month.
Here are some additional benefits of partnering with the right local SEO agency:
Access to advanced tools and technology for identifying optimization opportunities.
Ongoing long-term SEO strategy vs. just one-time website audit and fixes.
Extra capacity to produce and promote local content regularly.
Technical expertise to resolve site speed and performance problems.
Authority building through powerful backlinks and earned local media.
Reputation management across reviews, directories, social media and beyond.
Competitive insights based on monitoring ranking changes in your space.
Ability to expand into new geographical territories more effectively.
Direct access to experts invested in your success who know your business.
More time for you to focus on your core business while SEO is handled.
If you aren’t seeing the local SEO results you hoped for from handling it in-house, hiring a proven local agency is the best move to get the search visibility your business deserves.
Key Takeaways for Dominating Local SEO
Optimizing your digital presence for local search is a process, not a one-time project. Follow these tips to own your market:
Leverage Google My Business fully as your digital headquarters for local businesses.
Create hyperlocal, relevant content focused specifically on your geographic service area.
Build local links, directories, and citations to reinforce your physical location and area you serve.
Monitor reviews and online reputation closely as they directly impact local rankings and visibility.
Don’t neglect on-site optimization with your exact city, county and neighborhood keywords.
Partner with a local SEO agency dedicated to delivering real, measurable ROI – not vanity metrics.
Q: What is search engine optimization (SEO)?
A: Search engine optimization is the process of improving the visibility and ranking of a website in search engine results pages (SERPs). It involves various techniques and strategies to optimize a website’s content and structure to make it more attractive to search engines like Google.
Q: How can SEO benefit my business?
A: SEO can benefit your business in many ways. It can increase your website’s visibility, drive more organic traffic to your site, improve your search engine rankings, and ultimately help you reach a larger audience and generate more leads or sales.
Q: What services do SEO companies provide?
A: SEO companies provide a range of services, including keyword research, on-page optimization, off-page optimization, link building, content creation, website analysis, SEO audits, SEO consulting, and more. The specific services offered may vary depending on the company.
Q: How much do SEO services cost?
A: The cost of SEO services can vary greatly depending on factors such as the scope of the project, the competitiveness of the industry, the size of your website, and the specific services you require. It’s best to contact SEO companies directly for a quote based on your unique needs.
Q: How long does it take to see results from SEO?
A: The time it takes to see results from SEO can vary depending on several factors, including the competitiveness of your industry, the current state of your website, the quality of your SEO efforts, and more. Generally, it can take several months to see significant improvements in your search engine rankings.
Q: What are the different types of SEO?
A: The two main types of SEO are on-page SEO and off-page SEO. On-page SEO focuses on optimizing elements within your website, such as your content, meta tags, headings, and URLs. Off-page SEO involves building backlinks and improving your website’s reputation and authority through external factors such as social media and online directories.
Q: How can SEO improve my website’s ranking in search engines?
A: SEO can improve your website’s ranking in search engines by optimizing various aspects of your site, such as your content, keywords, meta tags, and backlinks. When search engines like Google find these optimized elements, they are more likely to rank your site higher in search results.
Q: How do I find the best SEO for service providers?
A: To find the best SEO service provider, it’s important to do thorough research. Look for companies with a proven track record of success, positive reviews and testimonials, transparent pricing and strategies, and a thorough understanding of your industry. Don’t hesitate to ask for references or examples of their past work.
Q: Should I invest in monthly SEO plans?
A: Investing in monthly SEO plans can be beneficial for your business, as it allows for ongoing optimization and maintenance of your website. Monthly plans often include regular monitoring, reporting, and adjustment of your SEO strategy to ensure long-term success and improvement.
Q: How can SEO impact my small business?
A: SEO can have a significant impact on your small business by increasing your online visibility, driving targeted organic traffic to your website, improving your brand reputation and credibility, and ultimately helping you attract more customers and grow your business.