15 Local SEO Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

Local SEO is a leading driver of organic traffic for local businesses. And with nearly 5 billion searches per day, Google Search is the place to find people looking for products or services like yours.

But improving local search is not always easy.

It takes keyword research, on-page optimization, and more to turn your website into a local traffic generating machine. Even most SEO professionals make mistakes along the way.

Here, you will learn about 15 common local SEO mistakes and find simple tips to help you avoid them when improving your website or listing.

15 Common Local SEO Mistakes Business

  1. Non-keyword targets.
  2. No customer reviews.
  3. Conflicting NAPW data.
  4. No directory profiles.
  5. No Google My Business listing.
  6. Ignore negative reviews.
  7. No backlinks.
  8. Website is not suitable for mobile.
  9. Poor quality website content.
  10. Duplicate listing.
  11. No contact information on the website.
  12. Bad image correction.
  13. Keyword stuffing
  14. No blog content.
  15. Poor technical SEO.

1. Non-keyword targets

One of the most common mistakes we see when it comes to SEO is targeting broad, non-specific keywords.

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While we would all like to rate for #. [best lawyer], This keyword is not specific enough to drive the local traffic we want.

How to avoid it.

In implementing local SEO, you need to identify geo-specific and service-related keywords that could potentially attract your target audience.

So, instead of correcting. [best lawyer], Such as keywords [Seattle family lawyer] Or [divorce lawyer in Seattle] Will fit much better.

2. No customer review.

Many business owners consider online reviews to be a “good” addition to their marketing strategy – not necessarily.

But in local SEO, positive customer reviews (and many of them) can help your business rank better in local search.

How to avoid it.

Creating positive reviews for your website, social media profiles, and online profiles should be a top priority. Reviews not only help build trust with potential customers, but also signal to Google that you run a reputable business.

These signals can help you get to the top of Google Maps and organic search results.

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3. Contradictory data of NAPW.

NAPW stands for “Name, Address, Phone Number, and Website,” and covers the most important information included in your online listing.

Unfortunately, one of the most common local SEO mistakes is that your NAPW has multiple listing discrepancies.

This often happens when you move locations, change your phone number, or change the URL of your website.

But other discrepancies include not having your Office Suite number, forgetting “Ave” or “st” on your address, or using the wrong website URL.

How to avoid it.

When creating or updating a new online listing, be sure to use the same NAPW in all listings. Many directories – such as Google My Business – will allow you to update this information very easily.

Keep in mind, though, that large collectors often push your information to various lists on the web, so getting your information up for the first time and monitoring it on a regular basis is your best bet.

4. No directory profiles

Submitting your business information to directories such as Google My Business, Bing Place, Yelp, and Yellow Pages can help your business location in local search.

Many business owners are reluctant to complete their local listings, or stick to a directory.

How to avoid it.

In fact, listing your business in multiple directories can help drive more traffic to your website, as you are giving users more opportunities to find your business in search.

The goal is to identify several reputable directories and submit your business information to drive traffic. Just remember to keep your NAPW permanent on all lists.

5. No Google My Business listing.

If you want your business to rank in Google Maps, Google My Business is the place to be.

Not having a Google My Business listing can hamper your appearance in local search and make it difficult for potential customers to search online and offline.

How to avoid it.

Be sure to submit your information to Google My Business or “claim” an existing listing. You can then add your NAPW, business hours, categories, customer reviews, photos and more.

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Having a complete and improved Google My Business profile is the best opportunity for you to drive local traffic through Google.

6. Ignoring negative reviews.

Boomer – You have negative customer reviews (or many) on Google, Yelp, or any other third party review site. While many people may choose to ignore these dissatisfied customers, doing so can actually hurt your business even more.

How to avoid it.

Be sure to respond to negative customer reviews to help build trust with potential customers. Your response can put the situation in context and help reduce some of the damage.

In addition, you can often report spam or inaccurate reviews to the directory and remove them – but this varies from platform to platform.

7. No backlinks.

Backlinks are an important ranking factor in SEO – but creating backlinks is a often overlooked process for local businesses.

You can’t rely on website and directory optimization to get high rankings in local search. You will also need high quality backlinks.

How to avoid it.

Ensure a link building strategy to improve your site’s authority.

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For local businesses, this often involves posting guest posts on other local websites or creating geo-specific content that naturally attracts backlinks. Be sure to check out this complete link building guide for more ideas.

8. Website is not suitable for mobile.

More consumers are searching for business through their mobile devices than ever before. Although most websites are suitable for desktops, ignoring optimizing for mobile search can significantly limit your traffic potential.

How to avoid it.

Work with an SEO professional or developer to make sure your website is mobile friendly.

Google’s Page Speed ​​Insights report will give you some insight into how your website performs across all types of devices. Your website should be fast, easy to navigate and user friendly regardless of which device the user is searching for.

9. Poor quality website content.

Just adding your keywords to your website doesn’t cut it. Having thin, irrelevant, or immovable content is one of the biggest mistakes businesses make when it comes to their local SEO.

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How to avoid it.

Your website should include valuable, accurate, relevant and keyword-based content to rank higher in search and generate more traffic. This includes the content of your main web pages and blog articles.

Be sure to follow on-page SEO best practices to fully optimize your content.

10. Duplicate listing.

There are several reasons why a business may have multiple directory listings. Maybe the business has moved and a new listing has been created with the new address. Or the business owner forgot that the listing exists and accidentally created a new one.

In any case, duplicate listings can confuse Google and consumers about where your business is and which is the right listing.

This may prevent you from updating your listing when you make future changes, which may further erode Google’s confidence in the information you see about your brand.

How to avoid it.

Cleaning is an important part of your local SEO strategy. Your goal is to remove duplicate listings, update your NAPW, and make sure you have only one, accurate listing for your business on any platform.

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Some directories make it difficult, so it’s always best to avoid this mistake from the start. Make sure you are monitoring new duplicates as they may occur at any time for a variety of reasons.

11. No contact information on the website.

Missing contact information makes it difficult for potential customers to contact you. This is a small opportunity to provide additional context to search engines about where your business is and how users should reach you.

How to avoid it.

Make sure your business website has a clear contact page with the correct information.

Even better, include your location information – with an embedded Google Map – and make sure it matches the items included in your other directory listings. Make sure the map is in the right place.

12 Bad image correction.

Missing alt text in your images? Are file sizes slowing down your site?

Poor image optimization can lead to poor user experience and you may lose more traffic than image search and rich search results.

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How to avoid it.

Run your website’s crawl to audit your image files and find current optimization issues (you can use tools like Screaming Frog).

The most common problems include missing alt text, large file size, or poor URL structure. To increase the load speed of the website, it is better to add relevant, descriptive alt text for all images and compress your images.

Check out these 11 image correction tips to learn more.

13. Fill in the keywords

We’ve covered that you should find geographic keywords to use on your website – don’t overdo it now!

Keyword stuffing is the practice of linking your keywords to different areas of your website or listing, so that your site is basically “better” rather than user-friendly. The result is a poor experience for visitors and a spammy appearance for search engines.

How to avoid it.

Use your target keywords naturally on your website. This includes your page titles, meta descriptions, physical content, and even image alt text – but in a user-friendly way.

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This is not an opportunity to use all of your keywords in the footer of your website or to use the maximum number of keywords.

Also, remember that Google is smarter than you think. It understands plural vs. singular, synonyms, and other nuances so you don’t have to use every different form of a word to correct it. Instead, think of these as actions that you must take on a regular basis.

14. No blog content.

If you have a habit of posting on your blog, your goal may be to drive more traffic. But blog content is unlikely to rank without a key focus or on-page SEO search.

How to avoid it.

Research local keywords to target geographic keywords in your blog articles. You may be wondering what content ideas you can find.

Then, follow the best on-page SEO practices so you can improve your article search, paying close attention to elements such as title tags, physical content, internal links, and images.

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15. Poor technical SEO.

Technical SEO is important for any SEO strategy. This includes the architecture of your website, the ability of Google to index your site, and more.

How to avoid it.

A technical audit of your site will help expose any existing technical issues that may need to be fixed – such as a lack of HTTPS, poor site security, or duplicate content.

A technical SEO professional or website developer should be able to address all of these issues for you, making sure your site is technically accurate and ready for ranking in local search.

Download Advanced Technical SEO: A Complete Guide to Learn More.

Avoid common local SEO accidents.

While there can be a lot of “mistakes” in improving your website, these mistakes are easy to avoid if you go about your strategy with the right information.

This guide helps you avoid many common mistakes, while following the best practices to improve your business for local traffic.

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This is a great way to get high rankings in Google search and attract more local users.

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Featured Image: Visual Generation / Shutter Stock.

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