In the world of SEO, link building is still one of the most important ranking factors. A lot has changed in the last few years, but links are still a key part of how Google and other search engines rank websites. The same goes for local search engine optimization.
If you're running a local business, it's important to make sure you're doing everything you can to optimize your website for local searches. And local SEO link building is a key part of that.
Local link building is the process of building locally relevant links to your website. The goal is to drive users and traffic from your local area to your website so that you'll rank higher in local search results and map packs.
Why Does Link Building Matter for Local SEO?
The links acquired from other websites back to your website are known as inbound links or backlinks. They help drive traffic to your website and improve your overall authority.
On the other hand, local SEO is all about optimizing your website to attract traffic and customers from a specific geographic area. Local link building is the process of acquiring backlinks from local businesses with two goals in mind:
- To boost your visibility in organic local search results.
- To draw more traffic from local customers who are already searching for businesses like yours and most likely to buy from you.
Moreover, there are three fundamental reasons why link building for local SEO matters. First, Google’s algorithm still relies heavily on links to determine your page rank.
The more high-quality backlinks you have, the better your chances of getting a page one ranking. Second, local link building helps drive highly-targeted, specific search engine traffic to your site. By aiming for the right traffic, you are more likely to attract people ready to buy what you’re selling.
Finally, link building for local SEO is an excellent way to build your brand and online presence organically. Better brand visibility leads to more website traffic, which can lead to better local rankings and more customers and conversions.
What Does A High-quality Link Look Like?
A high-quality link is one that will help your website rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs). But what exactly does that mean? Here are a few things to look for when assessing the quality of a link:
- The link should come from a website in the local area you're targeting
- The site should have a good reputation
- The link should be from a high-traffic website
- The link should be placed on a page with a few other outbound links
- The link should use anchor text that is relevant to your website
- The link should be relevant to your business
Local Link Building Strategies
Now that we’ve answered the question, “What is local link building?” and "Why does it matter?" it’s time to get into some link building strategies for local SEO that you can use for your business.
Get PR Links
PR or press releases are a great way to build your brand awareness and local presence while at the same time sourcing high-quality local links. While many small businesses shy away from PR because they think it's too expensive or complicated, the truth is that with a little creativity and effort, ANYONE can do it.
For example, consider holding special promotions or events. It could be a grand opening, a holiday sale, or even something as simple as a "customer appreciation day." Or, you could offer seasonal discounts or product demos.
Essentially, it depends on what makes the most sense for your business. Once you have chosen a promotion or an event, advertise it. Here's how you can do it:
- Research local news outlets (Facebook community groups, radio channels, local newspapers, etc.) in your area and find the right contacts to pitch your story to
- Determine which outlets to target based on your local audience
- Write a press release and include key details and a link back to your website
- Add keywords in your press release to help improve your chances of being found online
PR links can be very valuable, and you don't want to miss out on this local link building opportunity.
Get Links from Local Review Sites
85% of consumers are looking for local businesses with a high star rating, and 98% of consumers read online reviews about local brands. What do these numbers tell us?
Positive reviews are essential for any business that wants to succeed locally. You need them, and you want to secure them from websites that can generate a lot of traffic and clicks. Those that can help you achieve your local link building goals.
Here are some of the most popular local review sites that you can target:
- Google My Business
- Bing Places for Business
- Angie's List
- Better Business Bureau (BBB)
So, if you want positive customer reviews, then you need to encourage your customers and clients to leave them. The best way to do that is by making it easy for them.
Here are additional things you can do:
- Create direct links to your review profile pages on each of the platforms listed above
- Add badges or symbols on your website that encourage visitors to click and read your reviews
- Offer incentives like discounts or coupons in exchange for a review
- Feature customer reviews prominently on your website or social media channels
Get Listed in Local Businesses Directories
According to a study, 94% of consumers learned about a new company through a business directory. That's a pretty high number, and it just goes to show how important local business directories are.
For local link building opportunities, you want to get your business listed on as many reputable and high-traffic directories as possible. Popular directories include:
Or you can search "local small business directory + local target area" on Google. This way, you'll get more local or relevant directories to your niche. For example, "best local seo companies directory Los Angeles." The results you'll get will be more tailored and specific to what you're looking for.
And when you're ready to submit your business, make sure to:
- Include all the necessary information like your business name, address, phone number (NAP), website URL, business hours, etc.
- Choose the most relevant categories.
- Include additional information like images, videos, and a description to make your listing stand out
- Include relevant keywords but don't stuff your listing with them
Every detail matters, so make sure that you don't overlook anything.
Create A Blog for Local Topics
Another link building strategy for local SEO is to create a blog. It's a great way to show your audience that you're an expert in your field while also providing valuable information.
This step may require more effort than the others, but it'll be worth it in the end. If you're not convinced, here are a couple of reasons why blogging is beneficial for local link building:
- Blog content is quick and easy to share on social media
- According to a report, 60% of buyers read blog posts before making a purchasing decision
- Blogging allows you to display your expertise and knowledge, which boosts customer trust and ultimately encourages them to do business with your brand over competitors.
And once you are ready to start your blog, here are some tips to get inbound links to your blog posts:
- It starts with great content. When your readers find your content helpful and valuable, they'll be more likely to link to it.
- There's a good chance you can get a backlink if you pitch your content to link roundups. These are blog posts that feature a collection of high-quality articles on a certain topic.
- Share your blog posts on social media. The more people who see it, the more likely someone will link to it.
- Reach out to influencers and ask them to share your blog post if they find it useful.
- Establish yourself as a local expert, and you'll be well on your way to earning quality backlinks that will help improve your local SEO.
If you need help creating content for your local blog, we can help. We are a local SEO agency, and we offer local SEO services that can help you establish your brand and get in front of your target audience.
Look for Unlinked Mentions of Your Business and Ask for Links
Unlinked mentions of your brand can present excellent opportunities to acquire backlinks from authoritative and high-quality websites. And to find these unlinked mentions, you can do a Google search of your business name or keywords related to your business. For example, if you own a local bakery, you can search "local bakery."
Once you've found some unlinked mentions of your brand, reach out to the website owner and politely ask them to link back to your website. They may not always say yes, but it's definitely worth a try.
Of course, there is no need to pursue every unlinked mention. Just focus on the websites that are relevant to your business and have a high Domain Authority.
Boosting your chances of converting these unlinked mentions into quality backlinks comes down to a few things:
- Offering value. When you reach out to the website owner and ask them to link back to your website, make sure you offer value. For example, you can offer to link back to their website from your blog.
- Being polite and professional. This factor should go without saying, but it's still worth mentioning. Make sure you're respectful and courteous when you reach out to someone.
- Asking for a specific URL. For example, if you want the website owner to link back to your home page, ask for that specifically. They're more likely to say yes if specific with your request.
The five link-building strategies we’ve outlined are a great starting point for businesses to improve their local SEO. By using these tactics, you can increase your website’s authority and relevance and build a more substantial online presence that will help you attract more customers.
If there's anything we can help you with or if you have any questions about local SEO strategy, feel free to reach out. We are a local SEO marketing company, and we're always happy to help out fellow business owners. Contact our local SEO company today to learn more about our local business SEO services, local SEO packages, or local seo pricing.