Downers Grove Website Design + Local SEO
How to dominate Downers Grove local SEO
It used to be that getting a local business to rank on the first page of Google’s search engine results page, otherwise known as SERPs, was as easy as just having a website, getting your website link on a few online business directories, and claiming your business on the Google My Business Page. Once you checked a few basic SEO boxes, you had a really good chance to be on the first page of Google for keywords like “realtors in Downers Grove.”
Sadly, those days have long since passed…
Downers Grove Local SEO is much, MUCH more competitive
In the current internet landscape, local SEO is getting more and more competitive. But why? One of the reasons is that some local businesses have finally realized how important it is to do some foundational SEO practices, and are doing basic SEO on a regular basis. This means that those limited high ranking spots are getting more and more scarce and harder to get.
In addition to more web savvy local businesses, Google keeps changing it’s algorithm making it more complex and more difficult to rank for local search keywords, both short and long-tail. Simple SEO fixes such as local citation correction aren’t going to cut it anymore.
The Google Local 7-pack…wait 3-pack…wait 2-pack…
Not so long ago Google unveiled the seven local business listings in the “Google Pack”, then just last year reduced that 7-pack to just a 3-pack. Now the current plan from all mighty Google is to reduce the 3-pack to a 2-pack with one paid position. This only makes it all the more competitive to get one of the highly coveted spots.
Because of Google’s ongoing changes, it is even more important for local businesses to expand their local business SEO strategies, and use a broader range of Downers Grove local SEO techniques. Here’s a few just to start:
- Optimize your Downers Grove My Business Page on Google
- Create content on your website that targets local keyword phrases
- Get listed on online business directories & setup profiles which link to your site on citation sites
- Have your clients/customers leave reviews on your site, Google, and 3rd party review sites like Yelp (yuck btw….we hate Yelp)
Google My Business is still relevant to Downers Grove local search
Over the past couple of years, Google has made it a point to encourage local businesses to create or claim their Google My Business Page. Google has an entire team devoted to this task. The GYBO team is even partnering with local chamber of commerce offices like the Downers Grove Chamber of Commerce, local city governments, and some not-for-profit businesses to teach local businesses how to claim their Google My Busines page.
The primary stress of these workshops is to show local businesses how to fill out as much information as possible on their GMB page.
When businesses complete all of this information, they differentiate themselves from other businesses in the area that haven’t verified their listings or haven’t taken the time to completely fill out their business profile. This makes the business that has completed their profile have a more robust GMB page, which will increase it’s chances to appear in the Local Pack.
Write local Downers Grove content
If you’re a REALTOR or small business in Downers Grove (REALTORS are small businesses themselves), and you want to compete in local search, then you NEED to focus on your local content marketing by creating local content on your website. THIS IS NOT AN OPTION! This means that you need to write several blog posts every week that mention local keyword phrases such as “Downers Grove real estate agent”, write posts that mention local events and activities such as festivals, create local city target pages, post about local specials you may be running, etc…
Make sure that you’re writing at least 300-500 words of content for each blog post and 500-1000 words of local content for each city specific page, using your targeted keywords throughout. If you service multiple cities and/or locations, setup a page for each one using the amount of words suggested above.
Downers Grove Local Citations/Online Business Directories
Local citations from online business directories such as Foursquare, Yelp, Citysearch, and MerchantCircle, are a fantastic way to get inbound links to a local Downers Grove business’s website. In addition to offering free backlinks, these directory sites have some Google cred. An added bonus is that a local Downers Grove business’s listing on one of these directory sites can often show up at the top of search results.
In some cases, directory sites that have major Google cred such as Yelp.com will dominate the search results, as shown below in a SERP for “Downers Grove Real Estate Agent.”
When it comes to local citations, you’ll want to make sure that all of the business information matches across all of the directories. It is possible that information that doesn’t match can have a negative effect on your business showing up in the Local Pack.
One of the best ways to do this is to use a service like Factual or Infogroup. These companies have created partnerships with many of the online business directories. You’ll just need to input the information once and the aggregator service will send your business information out to the directory sites. It is possible that this will help your LOCAL rankings.
Have Your Most Satisfied Downers Grove Customers Leave 5-star Reviews
Recent updates to Google’s algorithm have made reviews more important than ever. Not only is there a correlation between high local rankings and online reviews, but 5-star reviews also give you credibility with current clients and potential clients. A recent study done by BrightLocal found that positive online business reviews increase the click-through rate by up to 22%.
So what’s the best way to get some online reviews for your happy customers? Just ask.
When you ask a client who has had a great experience to leave you an online review, be sure to give the client the exact URL or URLs of your review site/sites preference. Give them some options and make it easy for them. No one wants to work hard to go a leave a review. Providing your pleased client with a couple links will simplify the process for them and up your chances of getting the review posted.
Here’s a fair word of advice, don’t have all of your past clients go to one review site and leave a bunch of reviews at one time. It will look suspicious to the review site and to potential clients, and it is possible that the review site will devalue or even suppress your reviews. Yelp is notorious for this for a variety of unknown reasons. (this is why we’re not fans of Yelp)
There is little doubt that having many good reviews about your business or service on Google, your own website, and other review sites can make your business stand out online.
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