When I look around online I see one mistake in particular that many small businesses are making and especially real estate agents - the very people that would benefit from this! What am I talking about? Only The Easiest Free Online Lead Gen Tactic For Real Estate Agents! LOCAL SEO!
We talked briefly about Local SEO on a previous blog post about 3 lead generation tactics that real estate agents needed to get on. However, today will go over the basics and/or if you prefer you can listen to it, becasue I covered it recently in my podcast, 4rd marketing.
What is Local SEO
In simple terms, it's easier to give you an example. Have you ever been to a new city and wanted coffee. You most likely pulled up your phone and typed in "Coffee" or "coffee shop" or "coffee shop near me." What happened next is that you were likely shown a map with coffee shops displayed on it.
If you try this with plumbers, painters, and real estate agents (among other local businesses) you'll experience the same thing. A map comes up with a list of service providers and businesses nearby.
Local SEO then is basically "Search Enging Optimization" for map based searches. Even though the ranking algorithm is complex, getting yourself into position to rank here is not.
Note: Understand there’s a difference between a google search and a search where a map pops up
How To Get On The Map
First things first, you need to get on google, acutally it's called "Google My Business" – This is a free service from google and to rank you need to build citations, reviews, social signals, have an appropriate landing page. Setting up your Google My Business page will require an address verification.
Before we go further there are two definitions you need to know.
- NAP - Name, Address and Phone Number
- Citation - A citation is what is referred to when you enter your NAP. An example of a citation is on Yelp. ,
In order for you to really benefit and rank on local seo, you need to remember that your Name, Address, and Phone Number must be the same everywhere you put it. Across all citations (Yelp, YellowPages, etc) as well as on your Landing Page – the page that you link to from these citations.
Additionally, You will want make sure your website is relevant to your business and ideally have a call to action.
Once you've signed up for Google My business and verified your address, then you have a list of "to-dos" that will help you rank. Here's a brief overview:
- Get Reviews - your main focus should be getting reviews on google, but it also helps to get reviews on other platforms. The lowest value reviews are on Yelp.
- Get Citations. Even Social Media accounts can be good for this. So make sure your address is on Facebook. Directories - the long forgotten spam filled pages are worthless for links but actually work for citations!
- Continue to build links to your landing page/webpage and make sure they include "location based" words. Like City Real Estate Agent.
How To Measure Local SEO
Google will send you "insights" into your GMB (google my business) page, showing you views and clicks and sometimes even calls.
If you want to take it one step further you can use a keyword tracker, like the one available on 4rd Local, and add keywords that people search for such as "real estate agent + near me" or "Realtor + neaby" . Others to add are "Real Estate Agent in City" as well as your brand name (not your broker name).