Local SEO isn’t a new marketing concept. It’s been around for quite some time, but it’s never been this important to a marketer.
Every business needs a local SEO strategy. Otherwise, they’ll be missing out on high-intent qualified leads.
This is especially crucial for local businesses that want to target customers within their locality or city.
As a local business person, your priority should be to secure a high-ranking position in your location or Singapore in extension.
You’re also reminded about the volatile nature of SEO. Things change all the time on this side of the sphere. So, unless you do something to strengthen your local SEO, then don’t be surprised when search engine traffic turns out to be elusive.
Local SEO Tips for Businesses in Singapore
To succeed with local SEO, you have three things to do:
- Optimise Your Google My Business account
- Work on Your On-page Local SEO
- And do all you can to excel online
We get it – everything sounds so overwhelming. But it’s completely feasible — but only with a healthy dose of perseverance and patience.
Hang with us, and we’ll try to explore each segment in great depth.
Optimising Your Website for Google My Business
Google My Business is the jewel in the local search crown. You have first to understand that it’s more satisfying for Google when they share content that they can verify and support. And Google My Business is the tool they use to achieve this.
After Google verifies your business as legit, they’ll potentially reward it with a coveted sidebar space.
You have to optimise your website for Google My Business (GMB) by:
- Creating and verifying your GMB page.
- Posting on Google through your GMB account, as a local business. Learn to publish your offers, products, events, and services on Google local search using your GMB account.
- Encourage your customers to leave reviews online — and when they do, make a point to respond to them on time, and more authentically, while specifying your location.
Here’s an example of a good response:
“We appreciate you for your feedback on our [name of the product] in [name of your city, Singapore]
Your input means the whole world to us, and the whole of [your company’s name) team.
How to Create a Google My Business Page
Step 1: Start by creating a Google Account that you’ll be using for your Google My Business Page.
If you have a Gmail or Google account that you don’t mind using for the page, then you don’t need to create a new one.
However, if you’d like to create a new one, here’s a link (https://accounts.google.com/signup/v2/webcreateaccount?flowName=GlifWebSignIn&flowEntry=SignUp).
Step 2: After you’re done creating a Google account (all Gmail accounts are Google accounts), you can follow this link (https://www.google.com/business/), and click on “start now.”
Step 3: Enter the name of your business, before clicking on next. You’ll be asked to enter your business address, country, city, state, and zip code.
Fill in all the details and again hit the ‘next’ button.
Step 4: If your business model involves you going to your customers instead of having them come to your physical shop, check this box (I deliver goods and services to my customers.”
You also have the option to hide your physical location and only show your region.
Lastly, you’ll be asked to select your “delivery area” and specify if you deliver in person or if you only deliver within a certain range of distance.
Much of what you’ll be filling is self-explanatory and vary depending on the nature of business and how far you’re willing to go with the deliveries you’re making.
Step 5: This is where you choose which category your business falls in. Don’t rush to choose a category. Instead, take your time to go through all the categories and choose the most accurate of them.
Essentially, this is what Google will be using to figure out what type of customers to send your way.
Step 6: Remember to add your website and phone number.
Step 7: You have to verify your Google My Business Page. You have several ways to go about it, and it all begins with you choosing between the options provided. If you do not wish to do it right then, click on ‘later.”
How to Verify Your Google My Business Page
You have so many ways to verify your Google My Business account:
You can do it via:
- A Postcard
- Instant Verification
- Bulk verification
Verifying your Google My Business Account via a Postcard
Step 1: You can start by logging into your GMB account if you aren’t logged in already.
Step 2: Go ahead and confirm your business address, and make sure that you entered it correctly. Remember to also include the name of the person that the postcard will be sent to.
Step 3: Click on “mail’ after you’re done verifying everything. You’ll receive the postcard within five days. However, you’re not allowed to edit anything at this point. You can not change the name of your business, or change the category and address. Doing this will only delay the process or take you back to square one.
Step 4: After you receive the postcard, you’ll be required to log into your account and click on verify. Enter the 5-digit verification in the postcard, and hey presto! You’d have verified your GMB account.
If your postcard fails to arrive or gets lost, you can always log in to your GMB account and request another verification code.
Verifying your Google My Business account via Phone
Google has an option for verifying your GMB account via phone. However, not all businesses qualify for this. If you do not see the option to verify your business via phone, then too bad! You don’t qualify.
Step 1: Again, start by logging into your GMB account. If you have multiple businesses registered under the same Google Account, then you’ll have to specify which business you want to verify.
Step 2: Now choose ‘verify by phone,’ and you’ll receive verification code directly on your phone.
Step 3: Enter this code and ta-da! You’d have verified your GMB account.
Verifying Your Google My Business account Via Email
Another option to verify your GMB account is through email, but only if you’re eligible for it.
If you do qualify for this, you should be able to see the option to verify your account using email.
Step 1: Log into your GMB account, and if you see this option “verify by email,” click on it. But first, if you’re running multiple businesses in the same account, you have to specify which business do you wish to verify.
Step 2: Check your email to make sure you entered it correctly before you can go ahead and hit the “verify by email button.”
Step 3: Log in to the email you provided, and when you see the email from GMB, open. Now click on the verification button, and that’s it.
If you’ve verified your Google Search Console account, a Google tool that lets you monitor your site’s performance and its overall health, then you don’t have to verify your account again.
Google will automatically verify your GMB account. However, you have to keep in mind that this option is only available for some categories and not others.
Where your business category does not qualify you for instant verification, then you might want to consider the other verification options on the list.
How to Optimise Your Google My Business Listing
Getting your GMB account verified is only part of the process. To thrive on local search, you have to first optimise your listing.
Go ahead and flesh out your profile.
To do this, you’ll first have to log into your GMB account and choose a listing that you’d like to optimise.
After you select a listing, click on ‘info’ and choose a section to update or fill out.
Now add as much info and media content to this section. Remember to include your business photo, your area of operation, your hours, the day you opened, attributes (if you’re offering free Wi-Fi or any other extra), your website’s URL, and phone number.
Keep in mind that random people are allowed to suggest an edit. For this, you want to make sure that you go through everything and make sure it’s correct to avoid attracting random people to edit through your listing.
Another thing, always check your listing and make sure everything looks right. Make it a habit to avoid being a target of negative reviews.
You can always revisit your profile and edit everything by click on ‘info,’ followed by the pencil that appears next to the item or field that you’d like to edit. Just remember to click on ‘apply’ after you make the changes.
The Photo You Use on Your Google My Business Account
Google has some really interesting stats on this. In their report, businesses that upload photos to their GMB listing receive 35% more clicks compared to their counterparts that don’t. They also enjoy 425 higher requests on Google Maps for driving directions.
The photos you upload should be at least be 720 x 720 pixels and as either PNG or JPG.
So, what photos Should You be Uploading?
The most important photo for your GMB listing is the cover photo – and that’s because it shows at the centre and front of your listing.
Your profile photo is what appears when you respond to a review or upload a new photo or video.
Besides the two photos, you’re also advised to upload more photos to make your listing more appealing and engaging.
Type of photos you can upload
Descriptions of the photos
Google’s recommended minimum
An outside photo of your business store, shop, plant, or firm, taken from different angles.
Take this photo at different times of the day so that your customers can have an easy time recognising it regardless of what time of the day is. Remember to capture it in the morning and late in the evening. Capture the entrance, display, and the entire front region of your shop or office.
Capture your business’s interior by focusing on the décor and ambiance
This type of photo is meant to give your customers an idea of what it feels like to walk into your store or business.
How’s the environment in there? How does it feel to finally check you out?
A picture of the product you’re selling or of the services you’re offering
One photo per product or service
Make sure the products are well lit and edited (not to exaggerate any of the features but to make them clearer. Focus on the best features of the product or capturing the product in its accurate form.
Employees at Work
A picture of your employees working on a project or delivering a service
A picture of your employees doing their work and making your clients happy. It’s even better when you’re able to capture both your clients and employees.
Food and Drinks
If you run a restaurant, it’s always good to take high-quality pictures of your favourite menu item
Taking this type of picture tends to be complicated. You might want to hire a food photographer to help you out.
If you can’t afford one, then be sure to use good and brighter lighting. Make sure there are no shadows or any case of dimness
A photo of some of the places where your customers hang the most. It could be the lobby or lounge
One photo for each area
Capture the best features of the amenities you offer. Make sure everything is well lit and edited to the best standard there is.
You need a professional photographer with experience for this.
Your management team and staff
You need a picture of your team as a whole, with the management team at the front, where they can be clearly seen.
The picture you take must portray your team culture and personality. Everyone must look happy, and in between casual and professional.
You want to portray a collaborative environment, where members of your team work together for the common good of your business
Google My Business Videos
Google also allows you to add a video to your Google My Business Listing. There are a few restrictions to note though:
- You can only upload a video that’s 30 seconds or shorter. Anything longer than that won’t upload
- The video you upload must not be bigger than 100 MB
- The video is expected to have a resolution of 720 pixels or higher.
You need to upload a video for variety. It’s also a good way to stand out from other businesses that you compete with.
Videos aren’t a must, though. If you can’t produce one, then make good use of photos. However, having videos gives you an advantage over the competition that you have.
Google My Business reviews
The easiest way to get even more customers to comment on your listing is by responding to the
reviews you get – both negative and positive ones.
Before going forth with a purchase or interacting with your listing or website, you can bet the majority of your customers dig through reviews to find out what other customers have to say about your business.
By thanking those who take their time to craft a sweet review about your business or products, that shows that you appreciate their feedback.
It also makes the review stand out and more likely to capture your customers’ attention at first glance.
For a positive review, here’s an example of a response you can come up with:
“Thank you for doing business with us (name of the client). We’re glad that you enjoyed (the name of the product). It’s among the best products we’ve got. Hope to see you again soon. Cheers!”
Again, remember to respond to negative comments with the same level of enthusiasm. It goes to show that you do care about your customers’ feelings’ and that you are willing to go the extra mile to make things right for them.
Attacking them is not an option in this. Instead, you have to act all courteous with them.
Here’s an example of a good response to a negative review.
“We appreciate your feedback (name of the client). I’m incredibly sorry that our products, service or experience with us didn’t match your expectations.”
(You can talk about their challenge here).
Here’s an example:
“We started double-checking our orders to make sure all our clients get what they requested. You can check back with us, and we promise to offer a replacement or full refund should you prefer. We purpose to do better next time and leave you satisfied. Thank you.”
Google My Business App
Google My Business is also available as an in-app, for both Android and iOS.
Here are several ways you can use this app:
- To update your business location, business hours, description, or contact information.
- View search insights
- Post statuses and pictures
You, however, cannot use the app to:
- Change its setting
- Delete your listing
- Assign listing ownership to another person.
Work on Your On-page Local SEO
On top of Optimising your Google My Business Page, you need to work on your local on-page SEO.
You need a local content strategy to stand out and claim a top spot in the local SERPs.
Links and quality of content are the two things that Google looks at to rank sites. This works for local SEO as well – the same way it works for general SEO.
It’s also a well-established fact that if a site already ranks well enough in organic search, it’s also likely to perform well on Google My Business.
Further, high-authority backlinks are among the top-ranking factors for SEO. They’re also the key differentiators for Google My Business Rankings.
- Your web content strategy should be cognizant of accessibility.
- Learn to optimise your title tags and meta descriptions with local search terms.
For instance, “top restaurant in Singapore” instead of just “top restaurant.”
- Optimise blog content and static text content with semantic variations of the main local keywords that you plan to target.
For instance, if you run a real estate business in Singapore, instead of sharing information about the homes near you, you could also offer some valuable tips on what to do when around those homes.
- You want to use local photos and videos, all optimised with relevant keywords to both complement and enrich your content.
- Only publish original content. You can curate content and edit it in your own twist and style, but make sure it’s 100% original. Plagiarism checking tools such as Copyscape and Grammarly should be your friend in this.
- Remember to clean up duplicate listings. We suggest you run your listing on Moz Local Checker (link: https://moz.com/checkout/local/check).
- Make a point to double-check your website for double content. Clean it up before it hurts your overall SEO score.
Content Strategy for Multiple Businesses
If you do run more than one business, must you create a website for every single one of these businesses?
Web experts will suggest that you create one strong website instead.
If you choose to take this advice, then here are a few more tips you might want to take as well:
- Plan and conduct location-specific promotions for each business.
- Host and sponsor different events in each city to have something to write about each event on your website.
- Write blog posts that apply to a certain demographic, location, or season.
- Come up with a content calendar. Don’t just write randomly. Everything has to be planned for in advance to make sure your content is seasonal, and all-rounded to cover everything important.
- Make good use of Google trends to identify seasonal trends and adjust your content accordingly.
- Ask your users to submit user-generated posts (like testimonials, comments, and reviews). Engage them when they do, and try to keep the conversation flowing as much as you can.
Citation for Local SEO
Citations refer to the references made to your name, address, phone, and website online. They’re generally abbreviated as NAP+W.
Local Citation Tips you can take advantage of today:
- Add citations, whether manual or automatic.
With manual citations, you retain full control over everything. However, if you decide to move or rebrand, the process of updating them can prove to be an overwhelming experience for you.
Automatic citations, on the other hand, are less tedious. You, however, have less control over them.
- Use a third party to make your local citations and listing. For instance, you could use Mozlocal, Advise local, Yext, and Whitespark.
Your Checklist on Local SEO
- You can take advantage of the reviews and testimonials that customers leave behind by posting them on your site. Find a way to embed this testimonial and reviews on your site. Or better, if you’re running your website WordPress, get a plugin that streams them in real-time.
- Remember to list your business and website on Yelp, Zagat, Bing Places, and Foursquare.
- We want to assume that you’ve already listed your business on Google My Business.
You should feature this atop your priority list because Google reviews are among the first things that people see when they try to search for your business online.
- Remember to choose a listing management tool that you’ll be using to optimise your business information from all across the web.
You have a range of tools that you can use for this. Among them is localhub and Acxiom My Business.
- You also have to invest in a good customer review management tool such as ChatMeter, BirdEye, Review Trackers, and OnDemandReviews. Some of these tools are designed to notify you every time a customer leaves a review that needs further action from you.
- Have a solid social media marketing strategy.
- Find out which social media sites your customers and clients use the most. You should invest heavily in these social media sites, unless otherwise.
- Track your return on every social media channel that you use. Create separate accounts for Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google Plus. You have to know where the bulk of your money is coming from.
- Remember to localise all the social media channels that you’re active on and link them all back to your website.
- Add NAP+W on every social media listing you make.
- Get verified on the social media listings that you make.
- Share the testimonials and reviews you get on your social media pages
- If you can, try to hire someone to help you manage your social media accounts. This person is responsible for maintaining a consistent social media strategy and responding to all the queries your customers leave behind.
- Never pay for fake reviews. Instead, attend to your customers well and keep encouraging them to review your listing. Ask them to review it honestly, and not positively. Based on the experience they have while interacting with your business. Let them lay it all out in the clear, as is, without exaggerating or downplaying anything.
- Have a few rules that dictate how your customers review your products. This is not to sway their opinion or get them to lie about your business. Instead, you want them to review your listing in the most honest and useful way they can.
- Be realistic. Not every customer you attract will have something positive to say about your business. For all we know, you can’t please or satisfy everyone.
What’s important is for you to be tactical with how you respond to these reviews. Be courteous while at it, and in total control of your emotions to avoid running on the defensive and casting aspersions.
- Remember always to track and analyse your ranking. Make good use of analytics tools such as SERPs.com, Google Analytics, WhiteSpark Local Tracker, and Moz Pro among others.
- Learn to run a thorough site audit regularly to identify the red flags before they get to hurt your SEO score.
And Do all You can to excel Online
It’s a common mistake among business owners in Singapore to follow the newest thing while disregarding the rest.
Every marketer in Singapore appears to be so hung up on content marketing, social media, and inbound marketing. And while they’re all great avenues for marketing your business online, there are other ways for driving businesses locally that many of them may be playing oblivious about.
Take a step back and look at everything differently. Ask yourself, what can I do today that I’m really good at to increase business?
A simple moment of realisation could go a hecka long way.
You will be surprised by how much you can achieve with these not-so-glamorous pointers:
Not the best of the advice we can give, but forums are a great way of driving local businesses. You could make millions off marketing your business on forums alone.
Forums aren’t different from social media. They command a huge following, and their users are among the customers you’re targeting.
They can be a valuable source of business if targeted right. With some little bit of research on your end, you might come across forums that aren’t that big but are super-niche, lined with forks that will be eager to purchase your products and services.
Some of these forks will even be willing to share your content around and help you spread out a positive word about your business.
Here are a few forum sites to consider:
If you think your business is too big for craigslist, think again. You may be overplaying yourself or missing on a very important opportunity.
Just to remind you, Airbnb had their big break with Craigslist. They started by marketing their platform on Craigslist, and now their annual revenue stream flies to the north of 1 billion dollars.
Reddit is another good forum to market your business or products on. Just pick a subreddit within your niche, and stay active. Keep on sharing your sentiments and expertise on the platform.
Focus on being helpful and helping the clients you interact with come up with solutions for their problems. The more you interact, the more you establish trust, thus prompting them to want to find out more about you and your business.
Quora is another Question-and-answer platform that operates a lot like reddit. Users ask questions and others respond to it. It’s even better when you consider the fact that Quora performs really well in the search engines results nowadays.
The more you answer these questions, the more your responses will be appearing in the SERPs, thus increasing your local search visibility.
Real-World Operations for Local SEO
You have to adjust how you handle your real-world operations if at all, you want to excel with local SEO.
Here’s what you should be doing:
Hire Your Employees well and Train them
Your success, for the most part, depends on the products and services you offer. Offer top-notch services and products, and the reviews you get, together with the word-of-mouth recommendations that your customers put out for you, will help you drive even more business.
You have to know your products, services, and staff really well. Your presence must be felt with everything they do. It’s by doing this that you’ll be able to control what’s happening on the ground.
Have an open mindset and anticipate anything
Things aren’t always going to be rosy. You need a backup plan for almost everything that you do. When things fail to fall according to plan, that shouldn’t be the end of you. Some customers aren’t going to like your products and services, and there’s nothing you can do about it, other than owning it up and figuring the best way forward.
Hold regular meetings with your staff
You need this meeting to celebrate your little winnings, and figure out how to best avoid the bad, and keep everything likely to bring your business down at bay.
Remember that local search isn’t constrained online.
Try mixing everything up with local ads, including flyers, local magazines, radio, newspapers, and so on.
Local SEO Tips For Singapore Businesses
f you are own your own business in Singapore, you may be looking for local SEO to promote your products and services. Because the types of business owned in Singapore can vary from one company to another, you may need a digital marketing campaign that you can customize to fit your specific operation. Thankfully, the Internet is currently being used as a very effective tool for promoting virtually any type of business today across the oceans worldwide and in your local area too. Therefore, for those who are interested in making sure you have a successful campaign that is localised to your area, here’s some information that can assist you with your efforts.
Seeking for the Top Ranking on Google
First of all, Google is one of the major search engine players that can be accessed across the globe. People all over Singapore and abroad can access this search engine anytime of the day or night to find the products and services that they need and want. In fact, with Google, shopping around is made easy since there is a vast amount of businesses online that feature the products that they offer. So, if you want to utilise this marketing vehicle effectively for your campaigns too, you will need to know how to get started.
That being said, there are several different areas that you should place your focus on, which includes the following.
- Google Maps
- Google Places
- My Business Page
All of which play a significant part of being ranked in the top positions on Google. Therefore, there is quite a bit of information online today that tells each site owner what they should do to set up their local listing and other things that they will need to be successful. Based on the site and the information being provided, you will learn many different things that can improve your chances of reaching the local target audience in your area so that you can improve your sales potential. If you are in any doubt you should always seek out competent Singapore SEO professionals for their advice.
More than one Way to Rank and Improve Rankings
Focus on Deploying an Effective SEO Campaign
When business’s site is set up for the first time, you will need to learn as much as you can about search engine optimisation, specifically as it relates to getting to the top of Google. From posting articles with the best performing keywords and keyword phrases to ensuring engaging content is posted on your page regularly, optimising the site with the guidelines and rules from Google is not a luxury, but a necessity. So, it is best for you to know what the search engine’s programming is looking for to boost your ratings to the top in order to get the visibility that is needed.
Make sure the site is Designed for Local Campaigns
Google has also spent quite a bit of time in educating their site owners, marketing teams and website developers in how to capture business in their local areas like Singapore. With a local campaign, the owner of the site must also make sure that the site is signed up in all of the appropriate places. To check how your business for it’s performance in this area, one of the best ways to find out is to search by accessing Google as a regular customer. Meaning instead of typing in your business name into Google to find your own business name, you should search by entering the products and services that you offer to see how your company ranks. If the business is doing well with their local campaign, you will find your business on the first pages. Otherwise, you may have to scroll down several pages before you see your company’s name and what is offered. Either way, you can improve your rankings by falling the latest guidelines that have been published about Pigeon, which is Google’s latest algorithm’s search criteria.
What are the Benefits of Optimising Your Google Places Page
The information provided to local business owners can be overwhelming, and it may be difficult to understand why certain parts of these marketing strategies should be done and why. Thankfully, there’s are sites that focuses on the benefits of optimising your Google Places Page and they will provide you with some of the top benefits. That said, here’s a few of the top benefit that you should be aware of.
- Visitors can see your location, contact information, hours of business and other associated details quickly without having to surf around via google may business.
- New prospective clients and customers will learn what others are saying about you via reviews etc.
- Directions are easily accessible
- Provides an opportunity to see what your business looks like physically without having to drive to that destination.
What you Need to Do to Get Started with Google Places
If your business is not listed, the listing needs to be created. This can be done by visiting Google.com.sg to ask it ‘how to set-up for a Google Account’ so that it will give you the step by step instructions.
- Encourage customers to give you a review so others can read it.
- Make sure your business is listed in directories
- Optimise Your Page
Once My Business Page is Set-up… What Next?
One of the first things to remember after entering this information is, adding the listing is not the end of your responsibility, specifically since there are more things that need to be done to move your business from the bottom of the ranking to the top. One of the most important is, Google also has a number of different tools and services to assist you with these objectives too. Some of the most important consist of tools that helps you to analyze your page real-time to improve its rankings.
Marketing a business locally in Singapore can be challenging, but also a very rewarding experience. Particularly, when the business owners learn what to do to utilize the Internet as an effective local marketing tool. Therefore, signing the business up for its own listing on Google, learning how to optimise its page for the top spots and a host of other things can be very beneficial to getting the visibility needed to run and operate a successful business operation in your local area.
Use Local SEO Services To Make Customers Fall In Love With You
As a local business owner in Singapore, you are mostly likely interested in marketing your services or products to Singaporeans. You do not want your marketing efforts to be wasted on international audiences that will never buy your services or products.
So how do you maximize your online presence to reach your local audience?
The secret is local SEO.
Local SEO is an online marketing strategy that makes sure that when customers search in your local area your business appears on Google maps and search engines.
Why is Local SEO Important?
Local SEO is distinctively different from other SEO services because it targets specifically local and geographical searches. If you are a brick and mortar business or if your main target audience is the local customer living in Singapore then you certainly need an approach that focuses on local customers.
Local SEO makes sure that a customer gets search results that are relevant to them based on their current location. For example, if you search for ‘best coffee house’ on Google, you will see results of all the coffee houses near where you are, well at least the once that have made use of local SEO.
People who search locally are more intentional and specific. They are also more likely to be at the end of the sales funnel ready to make a purchase. The only question at this point is ‘who is offering?’
Local SEO has recently become very popular especially now that mobile internet use is exploding. More and more people are browsing the internet via mobile phones. Majority of these are looking for local businesses.
Here are some important locals search statistics that you should think about as available on Hubspot:
- 72% of customers who do a local search visit a store within eight kilometers
- 30% of mobile searches are from people looking for a location.
- 28% of people who search for something nearby will end up buying it.
- 50% of people who search locally on mobile visit stores within one day.
- 78% of local-mobile searches result in offline purchases.
When customers search for Singapore businesses you want to be the guy whose business is found first. You want to be the store that these customers walk into and you want to be the one selling them the products and services they are looking for. That’s why local search should be important to you.
8 Things That Influence Local SEO
There are many service providers for SEO services in Singapore that you can get to help you with local search. The main goal of these service providers should be to help your website get local ranking.
There are tactics that are specific to local SEO largely ignored by most local businesses.
Here are some these tactics that your SEO expert should employ to help your website get local customers through local SEO.
On-site optimization: Your on-page or on-site SEO should be on point if you want local customers to show you some love. On-site optimization involves creating high-quality web content, using keywords in your web content and authoritative backlinks. Also make sure that your pages have title tags with your brand name, the local keyword you’re targeting and the location. Your meta descriptions should also be optimized in a similar manner. If you get this done, your local search SEO goes up by about 21%.
Using local content: Singaporeans will be more attracted to content about them and their country. So use content that is more local and that will resonate more with the locals.
Outbound links: Use links from high authority local websites to give your website some authority and credibility boost.
Consistent business information: Provide a consistent business name, address and phone number across all directories. Consistency is very important for local SEO as you want to display matching information everywhere to avoid confusing your potential customers.
Directories: Online business directories are important if you want to be found locally. Make sure that your business information is listed correctly in popular online business directories. Use directories to improve your local SEO and get more traffic and business leads from your website through local searches. A few popular free Singapore directories that you can check out include Yelu, Kompass, ST Directory, Singapore Business Directory, among others.
- Google My Business: Make sure that you claim and optimize your entry on Google My Business (GMB) directory. The directory is free and will give you great local exposure as long as you optimize your listing correctly. To claim your Google My Business listing go to com/business and complete the verification process.
- Get online reviews: Online reviews are very important and you need to encourage your customers to post them online. 84% of consumers trust online reviews as much as they trust recommendations from friends and family. 7 out of 10 customers are willing to leave a review for your business if you ask them to. So if you have no reviews it is because you are not asking for them not because people don’t want to give them to you. Your Facebook page is a great place to collect reviews from as well as your Google My Business page. People will often turn to social media to search for reviews and that’s the space they are more likely to post reviews of products and services they have purchased.
- Encourage check-Ins: Use check-in apps for your offline store and request customers to check-in to your location online. Various social media platforms have integrated many location features that allow users to check-in. Facebook check-in promotions are one of the popular ones.
How Does Local Search Boost Your Business?
You have a clear understanding of local search, right?
Now let’s take a look at a few ways that local search can boost your business and why you should hire an SEO Singapore company.
1. Direct business leads to your website
Once you work on your local SEO and people are able to find you on the local search results, they will be directed to your website where they can interact with your web content. A web user is a potential business lead and if you play your cards right they can become your customer.
By using local keywords you put your business in front of local customers and you get placed on top of local map listings. This is exactly where you want to be if you want people to find your business.
Increased web traffic is great to keep your SEO score going. It is also great because it is the first step to get customers into your sales funnel. From here you can get them to share their email addresses and grow your email list. From the email list, you have a newsletter going and you can eventually get them to buy your product or service.
When you rank high on Google search results and on local maps, people will not have to struggle to find you and offer your business. The more people who are able to find you, the more potential customers will walk into your store.
2: Increase social media engagement
Local search also promotes engagement on your social media accounts.
Just think about it. When you are looking for a business online there are two places you are likely to visit; their website and their Facebook page.
The same process takes place when locals are looking up your business. If you have a well optimized Facebook account it will appear on your Google listing and people will what to see what you have going on your page. This leads to increase likes. The more fans you have the more potential customers you will get.
So as you are working with a Singapore SEO company do not forget your Facebook business page. Share valuable content, optimize it with relevant local keywords, add your business information and share authoritative links.
All these strategies will make your Facebook page easy to find and therefore, attract more fans who you can then engage further as you try to turn them into buying customers.
3: Grow your local reviews
High quality and positive reviews from customers increase your business’s visibility and credibility. Credibility is a huge factor when it comes to search engine ranking. So you totally need that credibility from your customers. The more you are visible the more customers you will attract.
If you nail local search then you will start having customers buying your products or services. And now that you know the importance of online reviews you will remember to ask them to leave you a review.
The more you grow your reviews the more trust potential customers will have in you making your job to convert them into paying customer easier. This is every business’s dream!
It is really not that hard. Just get yourself in the face, or rather fingers, of potential customers doing the local search online.
Local search will continue to grow and gain popularity. Predictions show that by 2020 there will be more and more search tools that are locally specific. The buying cycle will also be adversely influenced by an individual’s history, friends, and family recommendations all available locally online.
If you haven’t started paying attention to your local SEO performance now is the time. Do not let your competition beat you to it. Use local SEO services by local providers and take your local search performance a notch higher!
Local SEO Checklist For Singapore Business Owners
When you consider the fact that most local searchers will call, visit, or make a purchase from your store after they find you on Google, it’s pretty obvious that local SEO is a big deal. And when Google changed their algorithm and started featuring three local businesses in their listing instead of the previous seven, it became even more of a big deal. So it’s crucial that every Singapore brick-and-mortar business owner master their local SEO marketing. Take a look at this local SEO checklist to make sure that you get the most foot traffic possible.
1. Set Up Verify Your Business on Local Directories
If you want to achieve local search success, then set up verified accounts on all of the local directories. This includes creating free listings on Google and Yelp. This makes it much easier for the customer to find your business.
2. Verify Your NAP
Not only should your listings exist, but they should also include the correct information. NAP, or name, address, and phone number, are key parts of your local SEO. However, according to a study performed by Moz, a mismatched NAP was among the top three negative ranking factors. It’s easy to assume that just by updating your Google+ page that all of your other listings will change, but this just isn’t the case.
If your business has recently moved or your phone number has changed, update all of your listings. There are tools, such as the Moz tool, which allow you to check your local score, analyse your NAP, and fix inconsistent information. You may also choose to do a simple search on Google, though it can take longer.
3. Go Beyond Basic Information
There are times in which customers may want to know more information about you than your name, address, and phone number. Research shows that 58% of searchers are interested in your hours of operation, 53% are interested in the cost of a product, and 52% are interested in general information about your service or product.
4. Target Local Keywords
It’s common to optimise your website for everyday keywords. However, have you thought about optimising for local keywords? If not, then this can attract tons of people to your business. If you own multiple stores, then you need to create an individual page for each one. In this way, you will be able to focus on a certain keyword for that location. Also, it’s important that you don’t just use your business name as a keyword. You should ideally include your location and the services you offer as well. A great tool for this is Google Adwords Keyword Planner.
5. Encourage Customer Reviews
Studies show that most people read the reviews when they want to get a better idea of the quality a business offers. Not only that, but these reviews make up 10% of your ranking. So integrate a review tool into your website. Tools like Yotpo connect with your social accounts and make it very easier for your customers to comment.
You may also consider sending an email to the client requesting a review once you’ve made a sale. You could offer something in exchange for their participation such as a gift or discount. It’s best that they leave reviews on Google.
Digital marketing can be challenging. However, if you are a local business you can get ahead of your competition by working on your local SEO. And it only takes a few key changes.
How To Improve Your Local SEO For Singapore
According to information published on GuidemeSingapore.com, Singapore continues to attract entrepreneurs and investors from Indonesia, India, Australia, and other countries. Therefore, as Singapore’s economy looks up, there is strong growth and increase in business formations. In fact, as of the 1st quarter in 2017, new business formations totaled 16,096, which is an increase of approximately 6.3%.
Having said that, these new businesses will need to make their presence known in their local areas and across the globe. Therefore, they can benefit greatly from a wide range of successful marketing campaigns including those that promote local SEO for Singapore websites. So, for those new business owners who are interested in what these marketing campaigns entail, here are a few things that all new and existing business owners should know before launching a new website.
What Does Local Search Mean For Singapore Firms
Local search is around us for many years and search engines especially Google prefer websites with better local SEO to improve the overall user experience. Of course Local SEO can give significant advantage but how you can compete with other businesses while you don’t even have a local business at all. The first and most important step is to thoroughly understand your analytical data. This way you’d know what contents are getting traffic and how you can improve them.
What is Local SEO for Singapore Websites?
When a new business is established, there are many different things that must be done in order for the organization to succeed. Among the most essential is employing the best google Local SEO staff in the area to design an effective marketing strategy. For instance, one marketing technique, in particular, involves promoting the companies, products, services and their brand by utilising innovative local search engine marketing campaigns. These marketing campaigns are intended to reach large numbers of local customers using some of the major search engines like Google, Yahoo, and Bing. Hence, when these campaigns are implemented correctly, the business will have a chance to sell their products and services to the right type of customers in their local areas and surrounding communities.
What are 3 Great Benefits of Local SEO?
Because there are many different ways to promote a business, most business owners and their staff want to know what are the actual benefits of deploying a local search engine optimization services marketing campaign. According to several local SEO expert professionals from the best Local SEO company in the SEO industry, there are numerous benefits that businesses can take advantage of today, and they are as follows:
1: Local search engine optimisation techniques that attract new customers to the business
Some marketing strategies tend to be much more effective than others. Therefore, the best strategies and techniques are normally used as effective ways to expand the business. This statement is also true for those business owners who want to take advantage of local seo packages and incentives to promote their brands. Therefore, if any new company is expecting to increase their sales, it is important that this type of marketing makes it easy for consumers to find a business in the local search engines.
2: Local search optimization services help to speed up the process of getting customers the info they need
Another benefit of using a local business seo campaign is helping to get customers the information that they need as quickly as possible. For instance, when a company website uses citations like NAP correctly, customers can find the name, address and the phone number of the business in one centralized place. So, when a customer needs the company’s contact information, the data can be gathered quickly without unnecessary hassles or delays.
3: Local SEO optimisations helps to increase business sales by being available all the time
Aside from local seo services marketing assisting in getting information quickly, it is also important to note that local search engine and google local seo marketing techniques are designed for a number of different reasons and purposes. Hence, business owners should know in advance some of the top benefits that these marketing campaigns are offering to Singapore website owners.
With this in mind, local search engine marketing and local search engine optimization techniques can be used to ensure businesses are available at all times. For example, 9 to 5 local businesses can still be found without their company’s representatives having to speak with consumers directly by phone. Instead, the information that a customer needs can be found on their official website, especially when the business is found online in the top local ranking results.
Decide When Local SEO Is Needed
Closely understand the keyword pattern of the people who are searching things in your industry. Two different businesses might benefit from the location pages but it doesn’t mean they need the same kind of location details for local searches. For example, local SEO can do miracles for real estate and jobs related websites as the location matters a lot in these two businesses. But the location details could be different.
Choose Less Popular Keywords
As this is all about avoiding the big competition, focus on keywords which have lower competition. It is preferable to settle on less popular keywords than engaging in competition with businesses with better resources than you. There is always something you can exploit and use in your favor; however, in such cases don’t expect immediate conversion but instead patience is the key here. Meanwhile you can increase your business recognition and provide valuable contents to your visitors.
Use Structured Data
Structured Data can help local businesses to reach out to their target audience who are looking for a specific answer. At the first glance, this approach seems counterintuitive as the audience would not be visiting the website itself but it can help greatly in search rankings and that’s where the real traffic comes from. Structured Data uses database to associate keywords with their description and this technique works in a number of ways like for a recipe, article, event and others. Google’s Data Structure Testing Tool can help you do it the right way.
Use Social Media Marketing
Blogging and social media marketing are two popular techniques businesses use for marketing and to increase their search ranking. However, you can sync these two activities and use them as a much powerful weapon. As mentioned above, you need to position yourself as a knowledge provider in your industry. Providing valuable contents to people would develop their trust on you. Publish your contents on the blog and share them with a backlink to the website on social websites like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and others.
Many people chose the parent category while choosing the business category during setting up Google My Business Page. The reason behind this common mistake is the false assumption that businesses should target everyone instead of narrow down their target audience. Interestingly, the purpose of improving local SEO Singapore biased searches is to reduce the number of irrelevant visitors on your website that would reduce your bounce rate too. For example, if you provide “Macbook repair” service then choosing “computer repair” service would be a mistake.
What should you include in your local SEO Campaign?
1: Use Specific Keywords to Influence the ranking of the Business Site Locally
A significant part of developing an effect local SEO marketing campaign is identifying and using specific keywords. These keywords must be chosen selectively in order to target the businesses local community. For instance, once the keywords have been selected, they can be used in at least one of two ways. In some cases, the SEO specialists may recommend using specific keywords as combinations or keyword permutations. In either case, the main goal is to utilize the options chosen to target specific places in a local area. For instance, if a new real estate company is based in Singapore, the keyword that ‘s used could be written the following formats.
- real estate property Singapore
- local real estate Singapore
- real estate packages Singapore
Each of these keyword phrase formats can be used to influence the local ranking for a business website.
2: Include Drop Links to Relevant local search SEO Directories
When a local SEO strategy is used by a new business, they will have an opportunity to place their websites in local directories. Fortunately, this part of the process is relatively simple to do if the business owner and their representatives have already completed their research in advance. For instance, the people who are responsible for promoting the company’s website can start this process by simply dropping their links to as many local directories as they can find. However, before beginning this process, it is important to make sure that the website directories selected are all relevant to the products and services offered by the business.
3: Utilise Local Social Media Networks to Increase Customers and Sales
No local Seo marketing plan is complete without the use of social networks. Though once used for social communications between family and friends only, these networks have become very instrumental in building large communication vehicles of loyal customers for businesses. For instance, when a business owner or their representatives become an authority in a specific niche for certain products and services, the business can also be a reputable resource for locating useful relevant information. Based on the social network that is used, new businesses can expand their customer base by offering special discounts, freebies and other incentives to groups that want and need the products and services offered.
To ensure each business maximises the potential for high increases in conversion rates, it is essential that they select the most popular social media networks in Singapore. For instance, as of the 4th quarter in 2016, the most popularly ranked is Youtube. With a 75% of penetration rate and growing, social media networks are ideal for promoting new businesses and increasing sales. Specifically, when these marketing strategies are designed and deployed correctly. For more information on social media stats, new businesses should visit the site https://www.statista.com/statistics/284466/singapore-social-network-penetration.
4: Register the Site on Google My Business
Prior to a new business website being deployed to a live large target audience, it is essential that the site includes all of the resources needed to market its products and services effectively. Because Google has provided a wide range of resources and tools to assist owners with their marketing campaigns, everyone involved can benefit greatly by including what they are offering worldwide and locally too. Specifically, when it involves registering for resources like Google My Business.
Google My Business has been designed to make finding a business much easier on any device that is used in Singapore and other countries. To register for Google My Business, there are a few things that the owner will need to complete to get started. One of the most essential is making sure the products and services match the appropriate categories so they the organization can maximize the total number of customers that they serve on a day to day basis.
5: Install Analytics on the Website to Monitor the Process of each Local SEO Marketing Campaign
After a local SEO marketing campaign is up and running, it also important to note that this is just the start of a successful campaign. Since some strategies are effective and others are not, these campaigns will need to be monitored on a regular basis. Especially, if the campaign is not working as expected. In order to monitor the results, SEO experts recommend installing analytics on the website. Analytics will let everyone know when adjustments should be made and when local seo strategies are performing well in the Singapore marketplace.
With the trend of business formations continuing to increase in Singapore, it is becoming and more important for businesses to understand the effectiveness of deploying effective local SEO for Singapore websites. Because these marketing campaigns can affect a wide range of different areas including the business’ visibility in the major search engine like Google, everyone involved should make sure that they are designing successful local marketing campaigns for their organisations. Also, by starting early, there are numerous benefits that include identifying the best ways to attract new customers.
What Is Local Citation And Its Impact On Local SEO
Local SEO has never been more important especially for businesses that target customers from a particular geographical location. Local Citation is one of the terms that you will come across as you optimize your website for local searches.
Simply put, Local Citation refers to the places where your business is mentioned or found on the internet such as on other websites. These citations have proven to be very effective in improving local search results.
A citation may be on a review site such as Yelp or a popular business directory. It does not necessarily have to include a link back to your site; it could be where your company is referenced, cited, mentioned, or discussed on other local websites.
What is the Essence of Local Citations?
Citations will help to rank your Google+ Local map (previously known as Google Places Pages) by furnishing Google with credible details of your business. This information helps Google to know that your business is real and exists in a particular geographic location.
How Do Local Citations Work?
Google will be certain that your business is active and offers services/products in the various geographical locations based on the places where it is mentioned. As a result, Google is more likely to list your website in search results when someone searches for information that is related to your product or services.
It is recommended to create a Google+ Local Business page to enjoy maximum benefits from local citations. Be sure to verify and optimize it by including accurate details of your business such as phone number, address, and operating hours.
In the conventional organic SEO, Google mainly relies on backlinks when ranking websites and determining which ones to display in SERPs. Ideally, getting links from sites that are related to your niche will improve your ranking.
In the context of localized SEO, local citations and hyperlinks will boost the ranking of your Google+ Local map listing in SERPs. This means that the more citations you acquire, the higher your chances of outranking competitors who also have Google+ Local Map.
Types of Local Citations
- General business directories
- Industry specific directories such as Trip Advisor
- Press websites and local newspapers
- Local themed blogs
- Authority local websites
- Social media platforms
Qualities of a Good Local Citation
A good local citation should be seen as trustworthy and credible by not only the target customers but also search engines such as Google. This is why it is important to get mentions in established directories such as Thompson Local and Yell.
There are three pieces of information that you should provide when creating a business directory citation.
- Local phone number with the local area code
- Company name
- Physical address of your company
This information must be consistent with the contact details displayed on your website and other directories. Otherwise, any discrepancies will hurt your ranking and confuse potential customers.
How to Win in the Local Citation Game
The first step to winning in the local citation game is by getting more mentions than your competitors. Even though the total number is important, you should not ignore accuracy and quality of the information that you provide. The more authentic and accurate the niche citations are, the more powerful they will be in enhance your Google+ Local listing ranking. These citations will also boost your visibility on the web.
Getting citations from business listings is easy, but convincing niche websites and local newspapers to feature your company may be a daunting task. You can convince them by providing newsworthy content to them such as press releases or white papers.
You should also note that the process of creating credible local citations can be tedious and time-consuming since you will have to go through the same process repeatedly. You also need to have a marketing strategy in place to get the attention of local newspapers and press journalists. If you can, outsource this task to a skilled freelancer or agency to save time for other tasks in the company.
Guide To Local SEO For Singapore
Almost 90% of people search for local businesses on their mobile devices at least once every week. And more than half search daily. This signifies that local SEO is a crucial part of any online campaign. But what is local SEO?
Local SEO is almost identical to organic SEO in that the goal is to rank very high in the search engine results. However, in the case of local SEO, the primary focus is on ranking highly for a specific geographic location. So if you own a business in Choa Chu Kang, there’s no point in ranking high in the local search results for Jurong East.
The best way to improve your local SEO is to be in close proximity to the top local pack. Google’s “3-pack” is a term that refers to the top three search results for a local search.
Below, we’ll discuss a few ways in which you can increase your chances of getting as close to the top three as possible.
Optimise your site
One of the first steps you need to take is website optimisation. The more well-optimised your site is, the easier it will be for you to climb to the top of Google’s search results. So check out your basic SEO.
Create a contact page
Make sure that your site has a contact page. Users want to know as much as possible about your business. So include the name of your brand. Include the address of your business for every location–preferably in the footer. Include your phone number and make it clickable as 76% searches usually result in a call. This way, customers can call you without switching apps. You should also display your email address. All of these pieces of information are referred to as your “NAP.”
Add a map
If you want to make it easy for people to find you, then it’s a good idea to include a map. When you consider that most people look up business locations on Google Maps, then a map is vital. The best maps are those that are interactive.
Testimonials are considered to be signals of trust. So it stands to reason that many businesses have dedicated entire pages for their reviews. Collect customer testimonials and display them in a prominent place on your site.
Schema.org was created in order to ensure that all of the major search engines, such as Google, Yahoo, and Bing, share the same language. In this way, search engines can more easily identify what your site is all about. When you add schema, it lets Google know that your business is local. And this gives your local rankings a boost.
Use Hall Analysis to create your markup. Simply enter your information, copy the code, and then paste it into the <head> section of the website builder or HTML document. Google’s structured-data tool can help you test it out.
Not only should you build an audience for your blogs, you should also focus on earning inbound links. The best way to do this is to simply join conversations that are taking place on other local business blogs. While you should avoid your direct competitors, look for blogs that complement yours. Leave thoughtful comments or link to their posts. By nurturing relationships you can become more established, attract links, and give your digital marketing a boost.
Claim your profiles
Not only should customers be able to find your information on your website, but also other places around the web. And this means that your business should be listed on top review platforms such as Yelp, TripAdvisor, Google My Business, and Facebook. People should also be able to find you on local review sites. What makes this strategy so effective is that these types of review sites are often positioned immediately beneath Google’s 3-pack.
Create a Google My Business Page
Start by creating a profile on Google My Business. The best part about this particular profile is that it gives you the ability to manage your presence on Google and improve your rankings. Also, Google Maps shows users a detailed profile of your company.
Google My Business is one of the simplest yet effective ways of improving your local SEO. Luckily, for the process of claiming your Google My Business page is free, easy, and straightforward.
Google My Business Categories
After creating a Google My Business Page account, you need to choose the categories that resonate with your brand. However, local SEO experts recommend that you use as few categories as possible, while focusing on their relevance and accuracy.
For example, it will be unwise choosing the “Take out restaurant” category if you run a sit and dine restaurant. The bottom line is that categories should describe what your business is, and not what it sells or does.
Add Photos to your Google My Business Page
Most businesses make the mistake of using stock photos on their Google My Business Page. However, using actual photos of your location, staff, products, and customers will improve your local SEO. The photos will help in building credibility of your business and will serve as a local ranking signal.
You can also find a few local review sites positioned among those that are more popular. The key is to know how to search for them. Simply search [your location] reviews or [industry] [your location].
It’s a good idea to create social media channels that are relevant to your target audience. Just keep in mind that your information should be identical for each social platform. Social media profiles ensure visibility and it helps to provide search engines with additional information about your company. And this gives your rankings an additional boost.
Craft local content
If you want to make sure that your site is fully optimised, then it’s important that it has a blog. And it’s even better if you can host the blog on your own domain. For instance, your URL should ideally read, “www.yourwebsite.com/blog” instead of “blog.yourwebsite.com.” This ensures quality link building, which is a huge ranking factor when it comes to local SEO.
Every user performs their searches differently, so your posts should include the names of your and nearby cities, towns, and neighbourhoods whenever possible. Discuss local news and capitalise on the popularity of upcoming elections, events, and fairs in the community. You could even sponsor a few local organisations, events, or teams, and then talk about them. Don’t just talk about your services and products, write posts that actually help people. Hold interviews with local experts. Make it your goal to become a trusted source.
Know your target audience
It’s impossible to create valuable content if you don’t know who your audience is. Create a reader persona and do more research into your target demographics and their neighbourhoods. Tools like Nielsen allow you to look up a zip code and receive information about the median age, income, and spending.
Mistakes to avoid
When starting a blog, you should always avoid taking content from other sites — even from manufacturers — unless you’re quoting them within your original content. Avoid the multi-website approach. It’s much better to create a single, strong site for your business rather than splitting it into several sites.
Make sure that you read all of the terms of service and guidelines before asking for reviews on a certain platform. For example, Google doesn’t allow businesses to offer incentives in exchange for user reviews. Yelp doesn’t allow businesses to request users reviews in any way.
Also, avoid being pushy. Allow the reviews to evolve organically. A sudden rush of positive reviews often looks suspicious and can result in filtering.
Prior to the internet, a shady company could easily fool countless amounts of customers. However, current technology now gives consumers more power. Customers can easily find out if your services and products are as great as you claim. People now turn to reviews to find out who they’re doing business with. And ratings that are less than four stars can usually turn a customer completely off. A lack of ratings can achieve the same effect.
Reviews are usually featured in the local search results. So you need to make sure that you’re always asking for them. Sure, you may receive negative reviews on occasion, but every business does. The key is to respond professionally and always render great products or services to encourage the best reviews possible.
So what are citations? Citations are mentions of your NAP or website even if there are no links to your site. Citations are great for your local SEO efforts as this signal makes up around 13% of the pack ranking factors. So build them for real physical locations as virtual offices and P.O. boxes are not sufficient. And make sure that all of the information is accurate.
Other than Google and Bing places, several other online directories can help you increase your website’s visibility. They include Apple Maps, Foursquare, Yellowpages, and Yahoo Localworks. With that said, citations do not have a sizable bearing on local SEO as they once had, but they could give you an edge over your competition who do not use them.
Local search engines
Google, Bing, and other search engines crawl the internet for citations so that they can validate or even update information in their indexes. By listing your company on sites like Foursquare and Yelp, you can help them. So make sure that your company is listed in as many relevant, local directories as possible.
Local blogs are well-indexed and are usually associated with a certain city or region. The more links you earn from these blogs, the more trust you will earn from search engines. Local blogs are different from one location to the next, however, you can find those that are most relevant to your business by searching [target area] [niche] blog.
Just as is the case with local blogs, local directories are usually associated with a specific geographic location and are well-indexed. It’s preferred that you sign up for directories that are edited by humans. These are less vulnerable to spam and therefore are more trusted. Start by adding your business to Yahoo’s Regional Directory and Best of the Web’s Regional Directory. Search [city] director or [state] directory
Industry blogs or directories
Citations can also come from industry blogs or directories. These sites focus on the keywords and topics that are related to your services and products. The focus may not always be local but they still count as a citation. Trade organisations are a great example. To find these directories search: [industry] directory or [ keyword] directory.
Use Bing Places for Business
While Google is the most popular search engine, the second most popular search engine, Bing, commands a 33% market share. The search engines use different algorithms, and it is necessary that you rank high on both search engines. For this reason, you need to claim your Bing Places for your business.
Review Sites Listings
The modern customer takes reviews and they base their purchasing decisions on the reviews made by other customers. This means that you need to ensure you are listed on several review sites. Some of the most popular review sites include Yelp, Angie’s List, Glassdoor, BBB, TripAdvisor, among others. However, the reviews from Google carry the most weight.
After listing on review sites, you need to make sure that you have more positive reviews than the negative. It is common knowledge that high-quality and positive reviews will improve your business’s visibility. With that said, Google will penalise your website if you are found asking for reviews or setting up review stations. Other review sites also carry the same review policies.
Ensure the Reviews Contain Your Location and Keywords
While you cannot dictate how customers will write reviews, it is necessary that you encourage them to use the appropriate language. The reviewers should use your target keywords and location. This sends a signal to Google and other search engines that you are a trusted and credible local business.
Respond To the Reviews
You will improve your local SEO by responding to user reviews. It does not matter whether it is a positive or negative review; you should respond to every review. However, most businesses fail to respond to negative reviews.
While the number of reviews matter, the percentage of negative reviews without responses will hurt your local SEO. This increases trust from your potential and existing customers, as well as Google.
Create a Facebook Page
For most people, Facebook acts is a social search engine, and this makes it necessary that you create a business page and update it regularly with valuable and relevant content. On top of this, link it to your website and indicate the hours that the business is open in the description.
This is a social signal, and while it may lack an explosive impact, it will improve your visibility on Facebook, and Google will display the page on the search results.
While social SEO does not have an explosive impact, it is necessary that you claim the social listings on other social media platforms such as Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn. This is an important aspect even if you do not have plans of being active on them.
With that said, you need to add a section that shows how long it will take you to respond to customer messages.
Ensure that your business name, address, and phone number (NAP) are consistent on all listings platforms. Search engines also expect you to provide accurate information about your business. Having consistency also ensures that customers can connect with your business on the online platform.
Search engines are rolling out mobile-first indexing which means that they first look at the responsiveness of your website to ensure it is accessible via mobile. You can use this Google mobile-friendly test on your website to improve your SEO.
Structured Data Markup
You can use structured data markup for local SEO in various ways including hours, multiple departments, address, menu, phone number, and website. Google has an informative guide on how to add markups, or you can use a tool such as Schema. With that said, the jury is still out if you should include GPS coordinates in structured data.
CTR from Search Results
You should ensure that your website has the proper Meta titles and descriptions to help users navigate your site when they arrive on your website.
Ensure that you are consistently creating and publishing content that you can organically add your target keywords and location. This means that you should write about events in your location, participate in fundraisers, and any other events that make sense to your brand.
Keyword Optimisation and On-Page Location
Ideally, you should optimise your target keywords with your location. For example, do not optimise for “tuition services” but optimise for “tuition services Singapore.” You should also use your main target keyword and location in your titles and Meta descriptions whenever possible.
High-Quality Inbound Links
Links from authority websites are good for SEO, and when paired with a solid link profile, it will improve your local SEO. On top of this, you need diversity in your inbound links, but they should be relevant to your business and gained organically.
To improve your local SEO, you need inbound links from local relevant sites such as community blogs, and local news sites. However, you need to get an inbound link from an authoritative site that uses your location and main target keyword.
Increase the Domain Authority of Your Website
This is not an easy process, but it improves your local SEO. According to the Moz Local Search Ranking Factor, a website’s domain authority ranks sixth in the top 50 Local Pack Finder Factors.
Frequently Asked Questions About Local SEO in Singapore
According to Think With Google, four out of five consumers use search engines to find local information, which highlights the importance of local SEO.
In most cases, companies that offer SEO services in Singapore combine local SEO and global SEO. The problem with this approach is that global SEO requires a lot of effort and resources. It also takes time before its effects become noticeable.
If you want to get faster results, you should specialise in Local SEO. This is especially the case if the majority of your customers are local businesses.
When you optimise your clients’ websites for local search, more people will start visiting their establishments. According to HubSpot, 28% of local searches result in purchases.
Local SEO FAQs
Here are the frequently asked questions concerning local SEO.
What are the benefits of Local SEO?
The most significant benefit of local SEO is that it allows you to capture your local market. When your business appears on the first page of search results, more people are likely to buy from you. It also builds your reputation as a reliable brand.
Optimising your website for local search also increases your conversions rates. Since you are targeting a small location, you have higher chances of converting leads into customers. Also, it boosts the chances of repeat business as the customers become more loyal to your company.
Ultimately, your loyal customers become brand ambassadors. They can get more people to your business through word-of-mouth advertising.
How Does It Work?
Before anything, you need to create a Google My Business profile. This ensures that people can find you quickly when they type in your business name or related keywords on Google.
Once you have a GMB listing, you can increase its visibility by integrating keywords and creating content that is relevant to your target audience. After people start clicking on your listing, provide a means for getting reviews. Feedback can be an excellent way of encouraging potential customers to purchase your products, especially if they are positive.
Another way of increasing your reach is by listing your business on directories such as Yellow Pages and Yelp. Google relies on these directories for trusted information. If your business is registered on any of them, they know that it is legitimate.
You should also stay active on social media platforms. Make sure that you link your Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube accounts to your GMB profile. If you receive high engagement levels from the social networks, it translates to a higher rank in search results.
What are the most critical on-site tasks?
Make sure that you include your location name in strategic positions within your content. Such positions include your title tags, Meta tags, alt tags, and headings and subheadings. Your domain name should also feature the location you are targeting in your local SEO.
Most people access the internet using mobile devices. Your website should be responsive such that it displays correctly across all platforms. This broadens your reach and increases the chances of success for your SEO in Singapore.
Another way of optimising your website for Singapore SEO is by using high-quality images. The pictures should have alt text that displays in case they fail to load. Keep in mind that too many photos have an impact on the load time of your website as well as Google indexing.
How Can You Get Google to Display Business results?
Google does not always display business profile pages in search results. This is a frustrating experience, especially if you have invested in local SEO. Many clients often ask how you can get Google to list the GMB profile instead of webpages.
The reality is that there is no way around it. If you cannot see your profile after searching relevant keywords, you cannot compel Google to show it. The best remedy to such a problem is optimising your site further using regular SEO strategies.
For this reason, it is advisable to check the Google results page for your relevant keywords before engaging in local SEO. If Google is not ranking GMB profiles for your keyword, you should not launch a local SEO campaign.
What Types of Businesses Should Use Local SEO?
Before you list your business on Google, it is vital to understand Google’s guidelines. It is worth noting that local SEO is not useful for businesses that are exclusively eCommerce stores. The objective of the marketing strategy is to get customers to visit your store, meaning that you should have physical premises.
Local SEO provides an excellent opportunity for businesses that interact in person with their clients. If a company runs its operations entirely online, it is not a good fit.
Why Should I Focus on Local SEO?
If you offer SEO services in Singapore, optimising your clients’ site for local search ensures that they spend more effectively. This is because local SEO gets faster results than global SEO, and the clients will get more visitors and increase their revenue.
Local SEO gives your clients’ advantage over their rivals. Since shoppers are increasingly using Google to find the products they are after, having a presence on the search engine means that more people can see their business. As a result, they are likely to get more customers than their competitors.
What is the Future of Local SEO?
The marketing industry is continually evolving. In the past, businesses used electronic and print media to promote their products. Nowadays, the trend has shifted to the internet. If you are yet to create an online presence, you are missing out on an opportunity to grow your client base.
The future of local SEO will see an increase of voice search and reliance on emerging technologies such as AI and machine learning. The adoption of these technologies will make targeting easier, which in turn increases the efficiency of marketing campaigns.
Local SEO is an effective way of attracting customers and putting them in front of your products and services. Most people want a local solution when looking for an item to purchase. Investing in local SEO makes your visit easier to find. More importantly, it gives you an edge over your competitors.
In additional, local SEO is very competitive for many businesses, and it calls for brands to have a holistic SEO strategy. The list above will help you increase your chances of Google’s Local Pack, and this makes it easier for customers to find your business.
If you own a local business, then it’s crucial that you or your SEO agency, focus on local SEO. Given the number of people that search for local businesses every day, you could be missing out on significant opportunities. This guide will give you a running start and put you on the path to ranking in Google’s 3-pack or as close as possible.
Here goes your ultimate guide to running an effective Local SEO campaign in Singapore. After you read this to the end, go back to step one and try implementing everything exactly as we’ve covered, and see how that works for you.
Things might look a little bit complicated or too much even to figure out how to get started, but try putting one of your foot forward and watch as the rest of the chips fall in place.
You can talk to us about your local SEO strategy or, better, hire us to manage everything for you, and we can guarantee that it will be one of the few best decisions you’ve ever made for your business.