As the owner of a locally-based small business, you’re probably on the lookout for cost-effective ways to get your name out there. When it comes to search engine optimisation (SEO), though, that necessity can really put you in danger.
Many low-cost SEO providers use “black hat” strategies that are designed to trick search engines rather than help their clients’ sites rank higher. These strategies often involve publishing keyword-stuffed pages that are difficult for people to read.
Although some of these strategies were effective in the early days of the internet, search engines have since altered their algorithms to not only prevent them from being rewarded with high ranks, but to actively punish sites who employ them. In the business world, shortcuts taken here might have disastrous results.
Instead of accepting the chance that comes with black-hat SEO, you should use some white-hat link-building tactics on your own or hire a legitimate SEO firm.
7 Ways to Promote Your Neighborhood Company Online
The most difficult aspect of SEO is undoubtedly link building. Getting other sites to link back to yours is difficult because they typically have little need to do so. Earning links for your local business, however, can pay off handsomely if you put in the time and effort.
Sixty-three percent of local SEO specialists in a poll conducted by BrightLocal rated link building as “very effective” for improving search engine rankings.
You should team up with other nearby companies
Building relationships is the backbone of link-building. If people genuinely care about what you offer, they will be far more inclined to add a link to your site on their own.
You can rule out speculation. Relationship development with local businesses and influencers was ranked as the top strategy for successful link building by experts in the same BrightLocal poll.
Find similar firms in your area and learn about their processes. If you run a business selling dog treats, for instance, your target market can also consist of pet groomers, dog walkers, veterinarians, and dog trainers. Get in touch with the company heads and talk about how you can mutually benefit each other. You may collaborate on promotions, such as discounts for clients referred from one business to another.
Be a local event sponsor
Sponsorships are essential to the financial stability of many community activities. In return, they’ll help promote the sponsors they have.
Research local conferences, festivals, and professional events and determine which ones are most likely to draw in your target market. When you sponsor an event, you get exposure to the event’s target audience and, in most circumstances, a link on the event’s website.
Support community groups in your area
Many community groups that do good work in the area seek annual donors in addition to event sponsors. And these usually offer more lasting benefits than a short-lived event.
Think about the kind of people that buy from you on the regular, and find charities whose missions align with the impression you want to make on them. A health food restaurant would be a good fit for groups working to increase access to nutritious foods and promote environmentally friendly cooking methods.
Sign up for local directories-equipped professional organisations
Almost every city has a chamber of commerce, and some even have many chambers catering to different types of local company owners. Additionally, several industries have their own set of professional associations.
Find any local professional groups that are related to your work, and inquire as to whether or not membership includes listing in a directory. If that’s the case, your efforts may be rewarded with a local link.
Organize a drive or a benefit for a good cause
This advice can help you build your online presence while also doing some good. If you’re doing good work for a cause that matters to other people, they should feel obligated to assist you spread the word.
Your chosen charity will gladly help spread the word about it on its own website. It’s possible that bloggers and journalists in the area will cover the topic. Fans of the charity or readers of the newspapers covering the story might feel compelled to spread the word further.
Create and share original, regional content
White-hat link development relies heavily on content marketing because producing high-quality content compels other websites to link to yours.
Content marketing is becoming increasingly competitive as more and more companies use the strategy. On the other hand, local competitors are the only ones you need to worry about when it comes to search engine rankings.
Because of this, local companies can frequently see significant results from producing content that addresses local concerns.
Get in touch with bloggers in your area
Local bloggers are common, and they often report on interesting events or important concerns in their communities. Earning local links from blogs like this is common.
Find influential bloggers in your area and contact them to see if you can form a partnership with them. A blogger may be willing to write a positive review in exchange for a free product or service, or you may be able to set up an affiliate-style arrangement in which the blogger receives a small commission whenever one of their followers makes a purchase after reading about it on the blog.
Many of these strategies will make you an indispensable and well-liked member of your neighborhood, in addition to increasing your link popularity.
One of the advantages of white-hat strategies is that they don’t require any deceit or exploiting of loopholes, but rather focus on helping out the websites you’re interacting with, their readers, and your own enterprise.