MAY 4, 2015

The Ultimate Local SEO Checklist

1. Have you set up a Google+ page for your business?
a. Input all business contact details
b. Input business description

2. Have you listed your business in the general directories?
a. Yahoo
b. Bing
c. Yelp

3. Have you listed your business in industry/sector specific directories?

4. Have you listed your business in hyperlocal directories?

5. Are your listings consistent across all citations?
a. Business name
b. Telephone number
c. Address
d. Website
e. Category

6. Have you setup social accounts?
a. Facebook
b. Twitter
c. Claim venue on foursquare
d. Link to social accounts from your site

7. On your website…
a. Are your contact details correct and prominent?
b. Does your content contain references to the locations you are targeting?
c. Have you earned links from relevant sources?
d. Have you setup a blog to generate location relevant content?
e. Have you optimised your images for locations?
f. Do you have location keywords in your title tags?
g. Have you optimised your location based landing pages?

8. Reviews…
a. Have you replied to any negative reviews?
b. Do you encourage your customers to leave reviews?
c. Have you searched comprehensively for all your reviews?

9. Have you carried out a competitor evaluation?
a. Where are their links/citations coming from?
b. What SEO tactics do they employ to rank highly in local search?
c. What is their social/content strategy?
d. How can you improve on their efforts?

10. Does your site work responsively on mobile?

Using this checklist as a guide will help you gain more visibility across searches related to your area of business, there are ways to rank highly in areas that you do not operate in, however these tend to be on the black-hat side of SEO, usually by generating misleading information about your locations, as everybody in SEO will attest, these techniques are not long-term sustainable and will ultimately be penalized by the search engines, often penalizing the credibility of your legitimate locations along with it.

We recommend following this checklist and avoiding risky black hat techniques; aim to improve the user experience at all times, whether that is by making your site easier to find in relevant directories or by improving navigation around location landing pages, the user will thank you for these improvements and so will the search engines.