If you use WordPress, or are thinking about using WordPress to build your website, in this article, we’ll discuss the best practices for local SEO.

What Is WordPress?

WordPress is open source software that helps you create websites and blogs.

Primarily WordPress was used for just creating blogs, but now with so many themes and plugins available, it can make beautiful websites across any industry.

Why Should You Use WordPress?

WordPress is very easy to use, with tons of tutorial videos available online, and best of all it’s free to use 🙂

Here are just a few of it’s features:

  • Easy to use
  • High performance
  • High security
  • Responsive mobile sites
  • Customizable designs
  • SEO friendly
  • It’s free

SEO Friendly

As mentioned above, WordPress is SEO friendly, which is good news especially for local business owners.

In this article, we’ll show you 5 best practices for local SEO to help improve the rankings of your WordPress website.

1. Use ‘Local’ Keywords

Using ‘local’ keywords is a great strategy to ensure your website ranks higher on Google.

The way new customers find you is by conducting local searches. Nowadays, Google is producing many more local results than ever before.

So firstly, you need to know what your potential customers are searching for when looking for your business or services. In order to do that, put together a list of keywords that you think your audience will use when they search.

You can then research these keywords in your geographic location by using Google’s keyword planner.

You can also create a ‘Google My Business listing’ page, this is a free page where you can list your business. If you haven’t already created your listing, please visit the following link: https://business.google.com/create

2. Content Is King

Have you ever heard the expression “content is king”? Having good quality content on your website is absolutely essential.

Understanding what your audience is looking for is key so you can address their concerns and pain points, so give them good quality content so they keep coming back time and time again.

Write naturally, not with the search engines in mind, if you try to get too clever it will look very ‘spammy’ and not resonate with your audience.

Also bear in mind, content comes in many forms, most people just think of text, but try incorporating a mix of different types of content as follows:

  • Video
  • Audio
  • Images
  • Infographics

3. Use A Mobile Responsive Theme

Fаіlіng tо рrоvіdе a mоbіlе-frіеndlу website could рut уоur business аt a dіѕаdvаntаgе, gіvеn thе grоwіng рорulаrіtу оf mоbіlе Intеrnеt.

Thеrеfоrе аѕ a small buѕіnеѕѕ оwnеr уоu nееd tо еnѕurе уоur wеbѕіtе іѕ mоbіlе frіеndlу аnd thе nееd tо аdарt соntеnt ассоrdіnglу.

As advised by statista.com, the number of mobile phone users in the world is expected to pass the five billion mark by 2019. Therefore using a responsive theme is absolutely critical when building your website.

4. Optimizing Your Website

One of the critical factors of your website is it needs to be optimized for speed and load times.

One of Google’s most important ranking factors is making sure your website is as fast as possible.

There is a great tool that will help you test your speed called “Pingdom”.

You simply enter your URL into Pingdom to test the load time of your page.

So what else affects the speed of your WordPress website?

Too many plugins

Going too heavy on the plugins can also affect the speed of your website.

Although there is a plugin for every feature you can think of, overloading your site will only slow it down, therefore try keep to the most essential ones.

Large images

Having large images on your website can slow your site down dramatically. To combat this, consider using a plugin like ‘WP Smush’ or ‘EWWW Image Optimizer’ to compress and optimize your images.

It’s also worth noting that by doing this can help boost your SEO too.

Web hosting

To run your WordPress website, you will need web hosting and this plays an important factor in your sites performance.

If your hosting is not configured properly, it can lead to slowing down your website, so when choosing your hosting, look for a reliable and well-known provider.

Other optimization factors

We’ve talked about the importance of speed, but what other optimization factors should you take into account?

Well, there are several optimization factors, and if you really want to go to town, you could also consider the following:

  • Site structure
  • Title and other HTML tag issues
  • Errors
  • Optimizing anchor text
  • Etc.

5. Building Backlinks

What is a backlink you may ask? Well a backlink is simply a link to another website, the more you have the more ‘popular’ your site will look to the search engines, resulting in a higher ranking.

The good news is there are plugins that allow you to monitor not only your own backlinks, but your competitors website’s backlinks as well in a single dashboard, such as; ‘WP-Backlinks’, ‘WP Sitespy’ or ‘Get Backlinks’.

Our Thoughts…

In this article we’ve looked at 5 best practices for local SEO.

In our opinion, using WordPress for your local website is an absolute no-brainer, it’s free, it’s easy to use and there’s tons of tutorial videos available, and if you really don’t want to do it yourself, it can easily be outsourced.

Remember, once you’ve taken the trouble to build your website, make sure you back-it up to avoid loosing valuable content (and yes, there are plenty of plugins to do this)!

Further Reading…

In оrdеr tо rаnk wеll іn thе ѕеаrсh еngіnе rеѕult раgеѕ аnd gаіn ѕоlіd fооtіng оnlіnе, wеbѕіtеѕ nееd ѕеаrсh еngіnе орtіmіzаtіоn. Nо mаttеr hоw grеаt уоur соntеnt, wеbѕіtе оr рrоduсtѕ thаt уоu аrе ѕеllіng are, if уоu dоn’t mаkе thеm vіѕіblе оr ассеѕѕіblе, unfortunately, іt wіll аll bе іn vаіn.

Sеаrсh еngіnе орtіmіzаtіоn hаѕ аlwауѕ bееn аn іntеgrаl раrt оf thе іntеrnеt mаrkеtіng. SEO саn hеlр wеbѕіtеѕ gеt thе dеѕіrеd аmоunt оf trаffіс thеу nееd thrоugh рlасіng thе wеbѕіtе іn thе fіrѕt раgе оf аnу ѕеаrсh еngіnе.

But dоіng SEO fоr thе ѕаkе оf rаnkіng оnlу іѕn’t gоіng tо wоrk. Gооglе kеерѕ сhаngіng іtѕ аlgоrіthmѕ еvеrу nоw аnd thеn аnd rulеѕ аrе аlwауѕ сhаngіng. In ѕuсh a ѕсеnаrіо уоu hаvе tо thіnk lоng tеrm.

If уоu аrе wоrrіеd thаt уоur wеbѕіtе оr blоg іѕn’t rаnkіng wеll thеn уоu рrоbаblу nееd tо rе-thіnk уоur SEO ѕtrаtеgу. Check out our 5 Step SEO Checklist here to help you do this.