8 Essential Local SEO Tools for Sacramento Businesses

 

8 Essential Local SEO Tools for Sacramento Businesses

If you've got a physical storefront, local SEO should be your chief concern. Check out these 8 local SEO tools you should use to improve your search rankings.

Are you a Sacramento business looking for more exposure?

More and more California companies use digital marketing to promote their services to local customers.

Social media, professionally designed websites, and email campaigns can all lead to more customers walking through your doors.

Local Search Engine Optimization (SEO), however, should be the go-to for any local business wanting higher profit margins. Local SEO makes use of search engine traffic, helping turn Google searches into local conversions.

In this post, we'll discuss the eight essential local SEO tools for Sacramento businesses. Read on for insight!

 It isn’t too hard to imagine why search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo have put so much emphasis on local businesses. That’s because there are a lot of local businesses to choose from and they all depend on local customers walking through their doors, calling their phone number, and visiting their website. But it is a tricky skill to learn. Not all Local SEO is the same. For example, ‘best pizza in Sacramento’ is not the same as ‘best pizza in Elk Grove’ - or is it??

It isn’t too hard to imagine why search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo have put so much emphasis on local businesses. That’s because there are a lot of local businesses to choose from and they all depend on local customers walking through their doors, calling their phone number, and visiting their website. But it is a tricky skill to learn. Not all Local SEO is the same. For example, ‘best pizza in Sacramento’ is not the same as ‘best pizza in Elk Grove’ - or is it??

1. Google's Webmaster Guidelines

Most people are surprised to hear that Google has extensive guidelines when it comes to all things SEO. Given the fact that Google processes 40,000 search queries per second, however, it makes sense that the search engine giant has some stipulations!

SEO involves optimizing your online content for trending keywords.

Well-optimized pages are likely to appear prominently in search results for relevant searches. Highly ranked content often earns a click from searchers, making this valuable real estate.

Google's Webmaster Guidelines lay out what you need to do to make sure Google can find, understand, and properly index your content. Violation of any of these guidelines, deliberate or not, can result in poor rankings or Google penalties.

As you lay out your local SEO campaign, refer to these guidelines often to ensure you're doing everything you can to rank highly.

2. Google's SEO Starter Guide

If the world of local SEO is new to you, Google has a guide just for you! Much like the Webmaster Guidelines, this guide says a lot about what you shouldn't do when crafting your SEO campaign.

But it also clarifies questions about keyword selection, optimization, and Google's algorithms.

Refer to this starter guide for a general background of SEO. Remember that local SEO is still SEO--it just makes use of location-based keywords to cater specifically to local searches.

3. Google My Business

Google My Business is perhaps your #1 local SEO tool when it comes to community promotion. If you have a brick-and-mortar business, it's essential to claim your Google listing for this business.

Begin by registering your business on Google My Business. Doing so will involve a brief verification process. This usually involves Google sending you a physical postcard with a verification code.

Once your commercial property is verified, your business appears on Google Maps. It will also appear as a Google "card" to the right of search results for local searches. Such cards provide extensive details to searchers about a business, including hours of operation and contact information.

Google listings can also display customer reviews, another vital tool in your local SEO toolkit. You can, after all, optimize your responses to these reviews for location-based keywords!

4. Review Platforms

Speaking of reviews, customer ratings can make or break any local SEO campaign. Local SEO is all about cultivating a visible, community-centered reputation.

That's why registering your business on review platforms like Yelp or TripAdvisor is essential. This gives your customers a chance to leave you a five-star rating, which can drive more traffic through your doors.

As mentioned above, you can also respond to individual reviews and insert trending keywords into these responses.

For example, "Thanks so much for your review, Martha! We're so glad you enjoyed your stay at one of the best restaurants in Sacramento."

Note the local SEO keyword: "best restaurants in Sacramento."

 Surprisingly, many local business owners still think their website is nothing more than a digital business card. Nothing could be further from the truth. Business cards collect dust and lint in people’s junk drawers. Local business websites provide access to thousands upon thousands of customers via local search.  [  Photo Credit | Robert Couse-Baker | Flickr  ]

Surprisingly, many local business owners still think their website is nothing more than a digital business card. Nothing could be further from the truth. Business cards collect dust and lint in people’s junk drawers. Local business websites provide access to thousands upon thousands of customers via local search.

[ Photo Credit | Robert Couse-Baker | Flickr ]

5. Google Search Console

Every successful SEO campaign requires close monitoring. Keyword popularity shifts with consumer preferences. Your online content may also change, and Google is always changing up its algorithms.

Google Search Console has it all when it comes to SEO data! Make sure you register your website on Console so that you can regularly assess Google searches, impressions, and clicks.

Console can also give you insight into backlinks, page views, bounce rates, and more.

6. Answer the Public

A strong local SEO campaign rests on a solid network of keywords. It's important to do some serious local keyword research before you start optimizing your content.

One of the best resources for keyword research is Answer the Public. Marketers enter keywords and receive associated relevant questions and topics.

This can help you narrow down your list of keywords and choose the ones likely to generate the highest performance.

7. Keyword Explorers

Other keyword explorers can help you instantly assess a keyword's popularity. Google's Keyword Planner, for example, can be vital in this regard.

Ahref's also has a Keyword Explorer that has proven helpful for many digital marketers. You may also wish to check out BuzzSumo for similar tools and content research purposes.

8. MozBar SEO Toolbar

If you want a daily snapshot of how your content is performing, downloading the free MozBar SEO Toolbar is a must. This toolbar is free to Moz account users and details quick data related to SEO for every site visited.

Catch a glimpse of each page's domain and page authority, both factors in Google rankings.

You can also analyze link metrics for any page visited. Remember, the links to your site found on other pages do play a role in how highly you rank in Google search results!

You can even use an on-page highlighter to assess the nature of links present on individual pages.

SEO marketers can download any data assessed as a CSV file.

 Just like any project in your garage, the key to getting dependable Local SEO results is using the right tools. The reason so many clients choose us is because it can be confusing to discern what some of the tools do, let alone how to use them. Nobody is an expert in everything, but we are pretty darn good at what we do.  [  Photo Credit | Beth H | Flickr  ]

Just like any project in your garage, the key to getting dependable Local SEO results is using the right tools. The reason so many clients choose us is because it can be confusing to discern what some of the tools do, let alone how to use them. Nobody is an expert in everything, but we are pretty darn good at what we do.

[ Photo Credit | Beth H | Flickr ]

Final Thoughts: Best Local SEO Tools

Local Search Engine Optimization involves optimizing your online content for searches your local clients are likely to make.

Making use of Google's guidelines and review platforms can boost your local SEO efforts, no matter where your business is located.

Be sure to also regularly check Google Search Console to analyze search traffic and keyword performance. Get to know your customers better via Answer the Public and keep tabs on SEO performance via the MozBar SEO toolbar.

If making use of these local SEO tools seems daunting, don't worry! We can help you make your local SEO campaign a reality. Start a conversation with us today!