5 Local SEO Trends for Small Businesses in 2019

Creating a digital marketing strategy that works today is more than just getting the word out. When you’re a local business, you actually want foot traffic through the door. Whether you’re running a healthcare office or a local boutique, your digital marketing campaign needs to convert to real customers. 

The foundation of this type of conversion rate is SEO or Search Engine Optimization. If you don’t have the right SEO strategy, your small business is simply going to fly under the radar. Your customers are online already. They’re searching for local spots that feel their needs. In fact, 78% of local mobile searches result in a purchase either in-store or online. 

If you’re not visible in those online search engines, does your local small business even exist at all? Small business SEO doesn’t have to be complicated as long as you’ve mastered the right strategy. In this guide, we’ll look at 5 local SEO trends that are perfect for small businesses in 2019. 

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1. Go Hyperlocal

When we talk about going local with your SEO, we mean you should go hyperlocal. What does hyperlocal mean? It means pushing past your general location. Don’t just hone in on your city. 

When you go hyperlocal, you’re focusing on your specific neighborhood, part of town, nearby shopping centers, and so on. You’re a part of that local community in a highly specific way, and this will set you apart.

2. Use Voice Search

Voice search is a huge trend in 2019, and it’s only getting bigger. Your users are searching using their devices. They’re asking Siri, Alexa, and Google to find them the best coffee shops, dental office, and more. You can utilize this voice search in your own optimization. 

How do you do that? Start by changing the way you think about keywords. For voice search, you’ll need to use long-form keywords phrased as these commonly asked questions. For instance, if you’re a burger restaurant, you’ll want to focus on the keyword “What’s the best burger in Orlando?” This is how you get to the top of the results page. 

3. Don’t Ignore Reviews

Reviews matter more than ever in 2019. It can be hard to keep up with your reviews with so many different platforms to think about, but you simply can’t afford to let this fall behind. Phase 5 Analytics, a leading healthcare marketing agency, argues that consistent, positive reviews across social media and search engines boost your credibility and accessibility. 

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4. Host Local Events

While this might not sound like it will directly translate to SEO, it will. Hosting local events promotes your location, generates links from local bloggers and news sites, and it gives users an excuse to visit your business. If possible, leverage local influencers and press by inviting them to your event and throwing something in it for them, whether it’s a free trial or free product. 

5. Think Beyond Google

Finally, realize that Google isn’t the only search engine out there. This is seen clearly with the rise of voice search, but it doesn’t stop there. YouTube, for example, is a search engine in itself, and you can leverage video on this platform to skyrocket your local SEO. 

While Google accounts for over 79% of global desktop search traffic, social media can often appear higher in search results. Other platforms become search engines in themselves, like Pinterest and Reddit. Don’t limit yourself to Google when it comes to digital marketing. 

Make Your Mark Online

As a local small business, you need to position yourself where your users are. Even if you think most people will stumble upon your business in their daily lives, having an online presence will only help you push your business further. 

Small business SEO doesn’t have to be complicated. Don’t worry about competing with big-name businesses, just focus on grounding yourself in your community. From there, the traffic will come both online and offline. 

Adam Torkildson