Local SEO suits certain types of businesses such as brick and mortar stores, restaurants, florists, and service providers, among others.
It is relevant and indispensable considering 46% of Google searches focus on finding local information. Out of those searches, 88% of those people tend to visit the store within one day of conducting their search. You must have an online presence by way of a mobile responsive website or, at the very least, a Google Maps presence.
QUICK AND EFFECTIVE WAYS TO MEASURE SEO PERFORMANCE
1. DEFINING GOALS
First, define the purpose or goal of your local SEO campaign. Goals can target:
- Phone calls
- In-person visit
- Online form submission
- Appointment booking
- Online purchase
- Text or chat response
2. OPTIMIZE WEBSITE FOR LOCAL SEO
This is easily done by modifying title tag, meta description, and meta tag to include keywords plus your city, state, and country. Here is an example:
In this example, the addition of San Francisco optimizes the title tag for local SEO.
One good way to know just how your site is performing is by incorporating Google Analytics code before checking Google Analytics to measure local SEO performance.
Set up analytics by:
- Signing into Google and creating your account. Add your website and install the analytics code into your webpages.
- Set up currency and time zones in Analytics.
- Go to the admin screen, select “Goal”, and add a new goal. Give your goal a name and description. You can assign a monetary value for the goal by multiplying the average closing rate of leads with an average value of the sale.
- Set up form tracking by creating a form redirect page with variables in the URL to separate one page from the other. You may need to use plugins in WordPress to set this up.
- An alternative is to set up event tracking, such as when viewers tap certain buttons on their mobile.
- Set up a search console to work with Google Analytics.
This only works for your webpages. However, implementing different metrics– such as the amount of phone calls your business gets– requires different tools. Before we get to that, let us look at one thing you must do to understand your local SEO performance.
4. KEYWORD ANALYSIS
No matter how much informative content you write, you need keywords to be found since Google looks for keywords to rank your site. But how can you tell which keywords will prove effective for local SEO? This is how you do it.
- Navigate to SEMrush and type in your website URL. Click “Start Now”.
- You will see results showing organic keyword performance. Keywords are ranked by importance.
- Use the same set of keywords to conduct searches. This will show you which competitors are using the same keywords. You can decide to use the same set of keywords or focus on using other keywords. Dive a bit deeper by using the SEMrush keyword rankings along with your city name in Google. Doing so will help narrow your results. This underlines the importance of localizing keywords in your webpages, as stated above.
If you have not yet created a listing on Google My Business, Google+ and Google Maps, do so right now. Creating a listing helps professionally showcase your business to anyone who searches for it.
Now we can get back to the task of SEO KPI measurements.
5. CALL TRACKING
Most people who conduct local searches prefer to phone rather than using an input form. Since most people prefer using their phone, this means your SEO KPIs could be skewed unless you include call tracking. This can easily be done by using the CallRail tool. This, or any other tool, should integrate with Google Analytics.
To set up your CallRail tracking:
- Insert your CallRail code in your site to permit dynamic number insertion. Callrail and WordPress can be integrated with a plugin.
- Create a pool with several numbers.
- Each visitor gets a number assigned and conversion attached to their session.
Now, you can focus on sources that prove more lucrative with call tracking analysis in local SEO.
6. GOOGLE ADWORDS
Another important aspect of driving local traffic is Google Adwords or PPC campaigns on Google, or other search engines. Adwords is a terrific way of getting instant traffic or leads. However, it can prove expensive, which is why you must also measure this program’s efficacy.
- Link Adwords to Analytics account and enable auto-tagging in your Adwords account.
- Set up conversions as goals in Analytics and import it into Adwords.
- Create a call extension in Adwords and choose Google for call forwarding numbers.
- Create a single offline tracking number in the call tracking platform described above and use that for Google forwarding number.
Your analytics will show how many calls you receive through Adwords and you can calculate ROIs.
7. USE ANALYTICS TO DETERMINE STATS
Start your Google Analytics program and click Acquisition-all traffic-channels. Check for:
- Paid conversion figure per week, per month, and so on
- Calls and forms
- Non-performing ad spends
Generate a report and examine it meticulously to understand your local SEO performance.
Small businesses cannot afford to spend hefty amounts on local SEO. Therefore, you must be particularly meticulous about keeping track of performance in order to adjust campaigns and strategies to receive maximum returns. Following the above methods will help to measure local SEO.
Rakshit is a content marketer at LoyaltyXpert, a loyalty program company in India. He holds spectacular skills in loyalty programs, marketing, and customer retention.
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