In the past few years, local-specific SEO has become one of the most important and talked-about parts of online marketing. With its own set of unique ranking factors, local SEO has helped a lot of businesses flourish at the top of coveted Google’s local map results, while others attempt to pick up the scraps in the regular organic results.
Most of the factors that make up local SEO come down to old fashion optimization, with a heavy weight on authority, location, and consistency of business-related information (such as name, address, and phone number). For car dealers specifically, the rankings on local map results can cause one to wonder what it takes to claim a top spot.
If you’re one of the dealers who have been left behind, here are a few optimization tips that could make the difference between ranking and not ranking in local map results:
Check and Optimize Your ‘Google My Business’ Account
It takes less than five minutes to login, update, and save information on your Google My Business account. The most important fields you need to check are your business’s name, address, phone number, categories, introduction, and website URL (should be your highest-converting site).
Ensure the business name, address, and phone number are the same as what’s associated with your site and existing citations, such as DealerRater and Yelp. Consistency of this information allows Google to judge the legitimacy of your business. Without that, you may not appear in local map results.
You also want to make sure you have proper category associations. If you’re a Chevy dealer primarily, don’t have your primary category set as “Auto Repair Shop.” It’s the small things that, once optimized properly, can put you in the results for some very high-trafficked keywords.
Build the Best, Most Consistent Citations
In 2014, a lot of businesses take citations, such as YellowPages.com, for granted. With the focus on “links, links, and more links,” it’s easy to think that directory listings don’t matter. But for local results, Google wants to check up on your business so it knows it’s providing its users with the most accurate information possible.
Low-authority, spam-filled directories won’t make a difference. Focus on the big names.
Use a service like GetListed.org or Yext to quickly build and update citations by the bulk. And do research on your competitors to see if you’re missing any industry-specific citation opportunities!
Build and Maintain a Clean, Quality Link Profile
Okay, so links are still really, really important to growing ranks in both local and organic search results. They’re the currency of the web, and without them it’s unlikely your dealership could even compete.
Just keep one thing in mind when it comes to links: Some may look like a million dollars, but they’re really pennies in disguise. And just like everyone else in 2014, Google hates pennies. If you try to cash a bunch of pennies in for domain authority, Google may penalize you.
By having a fearful respect for linkbuilding, you or your SEO company will be able to help create a clean, quality link profile for your dealership.
Request a free local SEO audit by visiting www.wikimotive.com/contact-us