How to Realize Your ROI for Local SEO
There are countless benefits of localization and localized marketing. In fact, a recent report proves that localized marketing leaders grow their revenue 3X faster compared to industry peers. However, as with most marketing programs, the c-suite may still require some convincing on the ROI of localized marketing programs. This is especially true In the world of multi-location marketing- with so many areas of focus, you must understand what your business is getting out of its marketing efforts. For some localized marketing tactics, it can be easy to track ROI. For instance, when looking at your local ads, you can track your success through cost-per-click or the number of high valued engagements you receive.
Tracking ROI for your local SEO efforts isn’t as straightforward. Throughout this blog, we’ll dive into tactics your multi-location business can leverage to improve local SEO efforts, ways to track your success, and ultimately win more sales.
Improve Your Local SEO – Where to Focus Your Efforts
Before you begin measuring the ROI of your local SEO efforts, you should make sure best practices are already in place. When it comes to local SEO, your multi-location business should focus on both local listings, online reviews, and local pages.
Local listings are an excellent way for your multi-location business to improve its local SEO efforts. To do so, your business must first ensure that all of your local listings are claimed. Once your local listings are claimed for each business location, individual locations can start optimizing them. The more information your business provides in each local listing, the better chance you’ll have of becoming visible for key search terms on search engines, like Google. While including your business’s name, local address, and phone number are critical, there’s additional information you can include as well.
For instance, in the restaurant industry, your business can indicate whether it offers curbside, delivery, or in-store pickup. Similarly, if you work for a hair salon, you can include a button on your local listings that lets consumers schedule an appointment. Keyword-rich descriptions are an essential part of an optimized local listing as well. It’s also important for your multi-location business to monitor the Google Q&A feature of your GMB profile. If your business is receiving questions locally, it’s essential to address those questions so that Google will know your listings are updated and accurate, which will ultimately lead to more online visibility.
When it comes to which platforms your business should have local listings on, data from our 2021 Localized Marketing Benchmark Report leads the way. The report found that Facebook, Yelp, and Google My Business are the directory sites consumers use most frequently, and that’s where you should be spending your energy. This narrowed focus should deliver your multi-location business the same results for customers searching for your brand and free up time to strengthen other areas of your local SEO strategy.
Local pages are search-optimized brand pages at the local level that deliver a consistent presence across your business locations and improve your local search visibility. Local pages provide consumers with the convenience they’re looking for, keeping consumers happy and bringing business straight to your door. When it comes to optimizing your local pages, it’s essential to consider a strong keyword strategy, along with a content and design strategy.
For instance, before setting up local pages for each of your business locations, you must think about any relevant keywords to your business location or industry in general. These keywords are crucial to include on your local pages. To develop a strong keyword strategy, do research and brainstorm which keywords your target audience would use most frequently when searching for your business. Google’s Keyword Planner can help you determine these keywords and phrases as well.
When it comes to content and design, consistency is vital. While some of the language on your pages may vary, your brand identity should remain the same on every local page. For more insight into how your multi-location business can optimize its local pages, check out our blog on the topic.
Finally, online reviews are another factor that can contribute to the ROI of your local SEO efforts. Not only are online ratings and reviews one of Google’s ranking factors, but they are also essential when it comes to making sales. Ninety-five percent of consumers say that online reviews influence their buying decisions, and 88 percent of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.
While positive reviews can help boost your sales, they can also make your multi-location business more visible, and make you appear more trustworthy. Your brand can build great trust from positive reviews. The way customers are talking about you is just, if not more important as the fact that they’re saying your name. If you want to broaden the conversation around your business and boost your ROI, positive reviews are a must.
Many multi-location marketers struggle with understanding how many reviews they should be collecting per business location, benchmarks for responding to reviews, and what percent of reviews they should be responding to. In a perfect world, responding to 100 percent of reviews in a day or two would be ideal, but we know that’s not always feasible. Data from our previously mentioned 2021 LMBR provides benchmarks for reputation management that your business can use as a guide to make sure your multi-location business is meeting or exceeding these averages.
Track the Success of Your SEO Tactics
Now that you understand how to strengthen your local SEO efforts, it’s time to learn how to track success. As marketers, we often want to prove that every dollar we put into our marketing efforts generates more money for the company. Enter tracking. Before you start using these tracking tactics, it’s essential to set a baseline for where your business is starting. If you know how much traffic your business is receiving before optimizing your local SEO efforts, or the conversion rate on those pages, you’ll be able to fully understand the impact those efforts have on your business’s bottom line.
When it comes to local listings, there’s a variety of factors you can track to determine success, including:
- Phone call volume and click-to-call rate
- Your ranking on Google
- The online volume of reviews
- Website traffic
- Photo views
After tracking, you may notice a significant spike in traffic on Google Analytics, or your phone call volume increases significantly after your business updates your local listings. In that case, you can attribute the success to the improvements made. You can also keep track of the average visits to your local GMB pages per month and the average conversion rate from GMB. While these success metrics don’t directly correlate with sales, you can add tracking links to the links on your local listings and see how much of the website traffic coming from your local listings results in appointments and sales.
Many of the same metrics used to track the success of your local listings can be used for local pages and reviews as well. For instance, if you test out a keyword strategy on a few of your local pages to start with, you can track the traffic on these pages through Google Analytics to see if traffic is higher than those without the keyword strategy. Tracking the number of calls, appointments, or online orders you receive from your local pages is another easy way to track the success of these pages. When looking at reviews, you can track the volume of reviews your local businesses receive and determine if it correlates to increased website traffic.
Turn the Success Into ROI
Tracking the success of your local SEO efforts is essential to improve your ROI, but tools to help you manage your local listings and local pages are just as necessary. That’s where SOCi comes in. SOCi is the all-in-one platform for your localized marketing needs and the central command for multi-location marketers. SOCi empowers you to manage your business listings at scale and effectively optimize your online presence and local search rankings. From syncing, updating, and managing your local listings to custom audits and profile recommendations, SOCi Listings covers every step of the process to launch your listings to the top of search results.
SOCi can help your business manage and optimize its local pages across 100s or 1,000s of business locations as well. SOCi Local Pages enable your multi-location business to quickly make real-time updates to the local page and website data, including custom titles, meta descriptions, keywords, categories, and contact info for every location. Not only will this tool save your marketing team time and money improving your ROI, but it will also help improve your business’s online presence and mobile visibility while also providing brand consistency across limitless locations.
SOCi can also help your business when it comes to reviews! SOCi’s Review Solution allows users to leverage key review insights to command better business decisions. Through SOCi, users can view every action taken on reviews, and monitor every activity on social media. Now, your local, regional, and corporate teams will always know which reviews and social engagements are addressed, and which ones still require attention to ensure the prompt responses consumers expect.
It’s time to take the next step towards crushing your competition, and SOCi is here to help. Now that you know what it takes to level up your local SEO efforts and improve your ROI, what’re you waiting for? For more insight into how SOCi can help you create a winning local SEO strategy while enhancing other areas of your localized marketing efforts, request a demo today!