A Complete Local SEO Audit Checklist
13 Oct 2023
Every business owner wishes to be discovered by their local audience on search engine results when searching for the products and services they offer.
To ensure that you are discovered by your local audience, it’s essential to execute your local SEO strategies correctly for your business.
And how do you find out if you are on the right path in your local SEO journey? Well, conducting a comprehensive local SEO audit can give you a great head start.
Performing a local SEO audit may appear intimidating for those new to it, but rest assured, it can be accomplished through a straightforward process, with the help of various tools to speed up and simplify the task.
A local SEO audit is like checking how well your website shows up when people search online.
The main aim is to make it better so you can make more money and get more people to do things like buy your products.
This checkup looks at what’s good and not so good about your website, so you can make smart changes to attract more visitors.
The local SEO audit checklist is an essential tool for businesses looking to enhance their online visibility and attract more local customers.
Importance Of Local SEO Audit
Local SEO aims to ensure that your company stands out in local web searches. A critical step in accomplishing this is carrying out a local SEO audit. It benefits in several ways:
You may improve your chances of ranking highly in local search results by focusing on the ranking factors for local SEO and optimizing your website to improve your internet presence.
This entails sharpening techniques like employing local keywords, producing content tailored to your region, and making sure your company information is consistent across internet directories.
These initiatives increase your exposure and make it easier for potential clients to find your company.
Local SEO audits also identify opportunities to improve your local rankings. Relevance, prominence, and distance are all criteria that search engines take into account.
An audit assists in identifying areas for development, such as on-page optimization, consistent local citations, a strong backlink profile, and positive customer reviews.
Addressing these aspects can help you rise in local search rankings, surpass competitors, and attract more local customers.
A local SEO audit also aids in focusing on the appropriate local audience. You may improve your techniques to draw in more targeted visitors by examining website traffic sources, keyword rankings, and user engagement.
Connecting with local customers who are actively looking for products or services is more important than simply being visible.
Last but not least, any local SEO plan must include a competitor analysis. A local SEO audit enables you to evaluate the internet presence of your rivals, pinpoint their advantages and disadvantages, and find new ways to stand out from the crowd.
Understanding their local SEO strategies can help you create a more successful plan to outperform them and dominate local search results.
Checklist for Local SEO Audit
Optimizing your online presence for local search is crucial in today’s competitive digital world.
In this comprehensive local SEO checklist, we will outline the essential steps to ensure your business stands out in local online searches and attracts the right audience within your community.
Finding the Right Keywords
Discover the words your potential customers use in search engines to locate businesses like yours.
Keep in mind that different customers use different words, so avoid focusing on very specific keywords. To expand your list of keywords, consider where your customers might be in their buying journey.
Although you might already know some keywords to target, using SEO tools like Ahrefs and Keyword Finder can help you uncover additional longer and shorter phrases that you may not have thought of.
Keep in mind that most people who use search engines rarely go beyond the first page of results. That’s why it’s essential to optimize your website for search engine results pages (SERPs) to attract new customers and boost conversions.
A website audit is like giving your website a checkup. It’s about making sure search engines like Google can easily find your pages and that your website shows up when people search for things.
To do this, you need to organize your pages well, use the right words in titles and descriptions, and fix any problems like missing titles or having the same information in multiple places.
If you want your website to stand out, you should also aim to get those special info boxes at the top of search results, called featured snippets.
You will need to optimize your website for local SEO to help people navigate your site, connect your pages together, and make sure that there’s no copy-pasting from other websites.
Doing a comprehensive website audit holds a very important position in the local SEO audit checklist as it helps to figure out what to do to enhance their local online visibility and attract more targeted customers.
Analyzing Google Business Profile
A Google Business Profile (GBP) acts like a mini-website and plays a crucial role for local businesses. It’s a highly visible online presence that appears on Google Maps and in search results.
To make the most of it, a thorough GBP audit should focus on how accurate and detailed the profile is. This includes checking:
Business Info: Ensure all your business information, like address and contact details, is correct.
Main Category: Use the right category that best describes your business.
Operating Hours: Make sure your opening and closing hours are accurate.
Map Location: Check that your location on Google Maps is spot-on.
Business Type: Indicate whether you’re a physical location or a service that travels to customers.
Products and Services: List what you offer.
Photos: Upload high-quality images.
Specials: Share any promotions or deals.
Updates: Keep your profile current with the latest news.
Events: Highlight any upcoming events.
Appointment Links: If applicable, provide links for booking.
Content: Add useful information about your business.
The more complete and precise your GBP, the more it’ll be trusted and prominent in search results, benefiting your local visibility. So make sure to optimize your GBP for better visibility among your audience.
Review and Ratings Analysis
It’s crucial to consider how clients rate and comment on your company. These testimonials could serve as a sort of service report card.
If you’re performing an audit, you should first determine whether or not your reviews are favorable.
Positive online reviews can improve your reputation and draw in additional clients. Bad ratings can be detrimental to your company.
Check your review count as well. More reviews might increase the credibility of your company.
Then, look into the sources of these reviews. Do they come from trustworthy websites like Google or Yelp?
Last but not least responding to reviews demonstrates to Google that your business is active and responsive, which affects your ranking.
All these can help you improve your local SEO strategy and make your business stand out in local searches.
Local Content Evaluation
To connect with potential customers effectively, it’s vital to understand how they search during their buying journey.
To boost your local online presence, customize your content for each step of this journey to increase visibility and awareness.
Make sure your business is easy to find at every stage of a customer’s search journey. Use a content audit to ensure you have the right content for each phase:
Informational Content: At the beginning of their journey, customers want answers to questions like “why,” “how,” and “what.” Share this type of content on social media or your website to educate them about your products or services.
Transactional Content: For those who know what they want but need to decide where to buy, offer content like reviews, testimonials, and comparisons.
Navigational Content: When people search for your brand, guide them to a page that reinforces your authority and includes a clear call to action.
Commercial Content: To engage those ready to buy, provide deals, coupons, and easy ways to make a purchase.
Consider using engaging video content on platforms like YouTube, Instagram, and TikTok to enhance your visibility in search results.
And don’t forget to use relevant keywords and hashtags for better discoverability on social networks.
Track Your Rankings
Monitoring your rankings is essential for a local SEO audit. This entails monitoring how prominently your company appears in search results.
Make sure you are among the top results when consumers search for goods or services in your region.
You may accomplish this by looking at your position on search engines like Google. It’s possible that if you’re not ranking well, potential clients aren’t finding you.
Therefore, monitoring your rankings will help you determine how visible your company is online and show up higher in search results, bringing in more local clients.
Local Business Listings and Information Review
Local citations are like online mentions of your business, containing information like your business name, where it’s located, and how to get in touch.
It’s really important to make sure this info is correct in local directories, like the Chamber of Commerce website or Yellow Pages. Keeping these details accurate and up-to-date is a must.
If your business has moved, or changed its name, or phone number, you’ve got to update all these mentions. Not doing that can hurt your reputation and might cause search engines to rank your business lower.
Google Search Console
Google Search Console is a valuable and free tool that provides data on keywords, content performance, indexing, schema/rich results validation, and mobile/desktop experiences.
It’s essential for a comprehensive local SEO audit. Analyzing this data helps identify strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats.
Website owners should focus on issues like uncrawled/unindexed pages and manual actions due to questionable practices, as these can harm search visibility.
While Google Search Console sends notifications for such issues, an audit ensures nothing is missed, ensuring a robust online presence.
Checking Your Analytics
Utilize tools like Google Analytics to assess your web page performance. Focus on your top-performing pages and ensure they are prominently featured on your site.
Analyze organic search results, evaluate page performance, and understand the customer journey toward making purchases.
Additionally, check for external domains referring to your website for potential backlink opportunities.
Quality backlinks from trustworthy sites can enhance your search visibility, but be cautious of links from unreliable sources as they can negatively impact your online presence.
Start by entering the keywords you intend to improve your website’s visibility for into Google’s search bar.
Create a list of competitors in your industry based on the search results; five competitors should suffice.
Then, investigate their Google Business Profiles, customer reviews, social media engagement, local directory listings, and how well they appear in search results for those keywords.
You may also research extra keywords that are optimized for their websites using SEO tools like Ahrefs or Ubersuggest, which you could then utilize in your own SEO approach.
Our complete local SEO guide can give you a further understanding of how local SEO works and what things you need to consider while doing local SEO.
In the world of digital marketing, this local SEO audit checklist can act as an indispensable tool for businesses aiming to strengthen their online presence and draw in local customers effectively.
This comprehensive checklist encompasses various vital steps to ensure that your business shines in local online searches within your community.
This process, though initially daunting, is simplified with the aid of various tools. From optimizing website content and analyzing Google Business Profiles to monitoring rankings and scrutinizing local citations, each step plays a pivotal role in maximizing local visibility.
Dive into our blogs for a deep look at making your business visible with local SEO. We’ve got all the key info you need!
- Guide to Local SEO
- Website Local SEO Guide
- Guide to Google Business Profile
- Complete Guide to Google Map SEO
- The Basic Fundamentals of Local SEO
- Local SEO Ranking Factors
- Strategies for Improved Local SEO Rankings
- Local SEO Keyword Research Tools and Techniques
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