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Getting Found for Local Search — Location and SEO

SEO resultsWhen optimizing a web page for a particular keyword phrase, an SEO tries to focus on a niche market. What that means is that we try to find a competitive edge by concentrating on a targeted market of searchers while narrowing the scope of the competition. Three of the main factors to consider when optimizing any web page are keyword, intent and location. Consider the keyword "painting," for example. There are 189,000,000 results in Google for that word.

Are we talking about painting pictures or painting houses, fine art, decorative murals or exterior shingles and trim? Let’s say that you are a house painter and we can qualify the keyword "painting" by focusing on "house painting." When that keyword phrase returns only 15,500,000 results (compared to 189,000,000) you breathe a sigh of relief, right? No? What’s that you are saying — not much relief in competing with about 15 million other pages?

Now let's take this one step further and imagine that your business is painting houses in Georgia. An obvious keyword phrase, "house painting Georgia," reveals even fewer results in Google. You have now narrowed the competition down to 325,000 pages. You have to be happy with that. Still too much for you — makes you toss and turn all night long just thinking about all those other house painters out there in Georgian cyberspace?

What's that you say? You really don't care about painting houses in every little outpost of Georgia or even in Atlanta? Your house painting company has its headquarters in Alpharetta, Georgia — and there are plenty of Alpharetta houses in need of your services. And there are far fewer competing sites in the Alpharetta market. You might not think so, but 56,000 results in Google for house painting Alpharetta represents a number that an SEO could only hope for in his wildest dreams.

Location is seen as a Christmas present by SEO's.

Whenever a client has a "bricks and mortar" business with the intention of driving traffic to the door of their establishment, it really does make our job easier. Adding location to the optimization equation certainly enhances the chances of success. This kind of focused niche marketing makes perfect sense if you are looking for targeted local traffic.

If you are looking to target traffic that is very specific to your locale, then you should optimize for appropriate keyword phrases that capture the attention of searchers who are specifically looking for services in your area. That is what we call niche marketing. In other words, if I live in Alpharetta and I am searching for a house painter in Alpharetta, why in the world would I search for house painters in San Diego, California – or even in Atlanta? What I am really seeking is a house painter down the street, in Alpharetta – makes sense, right? So, why should Google direct me to your site and not the other 57,000 in its database?

Getting Found for Local Search — the Wherefore