Maintaining high Local SEO ranking is becoming increasingly difficult. The main reasons for this are more competition and search engine algorithms that are updated on a constant basis. Agencies, such as Local Impact, are devising new approaches to ensure clients enjoy excellent rankings on local search engines. Keeping the focus on three core areas helps direct new ideas while staying true to the basics.

Keyword Relevance
This topic is essential to make sure local businesses are matched accurately to customer queries. If a search is entered using a keyword of restaurants, the results should include fast food places, coffee shops, family restaurants and fine dining establishments. A lunch counter attached to a convenience store will not be included in the rankings if that keyword is missing from the description or content of the business. A small business ranking guide can be helpful in this endeavor.

When optimizing the first website page, precision of keywords will improve relevance. Be sure the business name, address, and contact number are accurate. Utilize as many keywords as possible in content. Include images in content to provide a space for alternative content and to attract visual learners. Select a title tag that will capture attention.

Building the Brand Name
Getting the brand name known and recognized on the internet is how to prominence which will add to local business ranking help. Credibility and authority of a specific business will drive Local SEO rankings to first page status among search engines. Center these efforts around positive reviews. Developing a strategy to increase reviews is the way to begin.

Invite customers to write a review. Most people will not think to write a review but will do so if asked. Including a pop-up box where customers can leave an email address is another way to increase reviews. Automated emails can be sent with a link to an independent review site. Responding to reviews is another strategy that will make a connection with customers and lend credibility to the business.

Establishing Links
Internal and external links are critical for both relevance and prominence. External links, also referred to as back links, direct searches to the business website from a related site.
They can also be used to direct people from the website to another one with detailed information regarding a product.

An article on a home improvement project site, for example, will include a link to a local business that sells skill saws. The convenience of having the link available right in the content eliminates the need to conduct a guide to local business search to find a skill saw. The business is accessed by more people and experiences an increase in Local SEO rankings.

Optimizing Back Links
Getting back links placed on as many other websites as possible will direct even more customers to the local business. One way to accomplish this is to present guest posts to related websites. A guest post on a Do-It-Yourself (DIY) blog, another on a product manufacturer site, and a post on a home improvement magazine website will reach several targeted audiences. This also increases the credibility and relevance of the business.

The Benefit of Internal Links
Creating internal links helps browsers navigate the website and prevent them from getting frustrated. If finding a product is too complicated, people will leave the site and go to the next one. Directing them to a specific page is likely to keep them on the website longer. A link to skill saws, continuing the example, means the browser does not have to search through chain, electric, and manual saws to get to the section regarding the product they desire.

Proximity
This is the third basic category in which to bring new ideas and creative approaches. Business that are presented as being close to searcher will rank high on most mobile searches. Non-Geo Modified searches are typically conducted on mobile devices. A group of professionals have just finished the first day of a conference in a town in West Virginia. They are not familiar with the area, so the entry will be simple, such as local restaurants.

A Geo-Modified search will be area specific with an entry that has more details. The searcher may enter restaurants in Huntersville WV because the family is in that town and hungry. They may have plans to see a movie and want dinner before it starts. A less popular proximity search is known as the “Near Me” search because those keywords are entered when people are not quite sure where they are at the time or want to find a restaurant in a five or ten-mile radius.

Including the full address of the business will increase the ranking in all three types of proximity searches for restaurants. A local coffee shop that is listed as being located in a region of West Virginia will fail to rank on a search for a specific town. Make sure addresses are specific by having the street, town, and state part of the listing.

More Tips and Information
The Advanced Guide to Ranking in Local Search by Kyle Goodchild, found on BrightLocal.com, is an excellent source for detailed information regarding steps professionals can take to best assist clients in achieving the level of rankings desired. This article also includes the category lists for major search engines, such as Google, Yahoo, and Bing. Put experience and talent to creative use to overcome the difficulties plaguing local search rankings. Researching online can help jump-start new approaches and maintain client rankings.