search marketing

What is Local SEO?

Local SEO services and strategies
Written by Paul Steinbrueck

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If you lead a local church, school, ministry or business, there is an added aspect of SEO to getting your organization to rank well in map searches and the “local pack” of the search results.

In this Search Engine Optimization Frequently Asked Questions (SEO FAQs) video blog, I address the question, What is Local SEO? and share 4 key aspects of local SEO.  

(The article below is a summary of the video, but you’ll get more details and examples if you watch the video.)

What is Local SEO?

Local SEO is all about enhancing your online presence in maps and local search results. Think of those familiar platforms like Google Maps, Bing Maps, and Apple Maps. Moreover, it’s about securing a spot in the coveted “local pack” in general search results. You know, when you search for something like “church near me” or “School in Safety Harbor,” and you see a map followed by three listings – that’s the local pack.

Now that you know what local SEO is, let’s talk about the specific things to focus on to improve your local search rankings.

4 Key Aspects of Local SEO

1. General SEO

The better your website performs in general search results, the more prominently it will feature in local searches. This involves the elements of general SEO we discussed earlier in this SEO FAQs series – technical SEO, keyword research, on-page optimization, link building, and content marketing – but with the added focus of targeting keywords that include the names of the cities you serve.

2. Google Business Profile

It’s important to go through the manual process of setting up your Google Business Profile, because for the most part, Google won’t do it for you. Verification is a crucial step, typically involving a phone call or a postcard. Then it’s essential to maintain accurate information on your profile, including your address, phone number, business hours, and details about your organization. Google doesn’t always get this right automatically, and you don’t want to frustrate visitors with inaccurate information.

3. Other Local Listings

While a Google Business Profile is most impactful, there are many maps, local search engines and local directories which can help your local SEO. Platforms like Bing Maps, Apple Maps, Yelp, and shouldn’t be overlooked. The more places your organization is listed, the better the chances that people will find the right information about you, no matter where they’re searching from.

4. Online Reviews

Lastly, let’s talk about reviews, particularly Google Reviews. Generally speaking, the more reviews an organization has, the higher it generally ranks in maps and local search results. It’s not just about having perfect 5-star reviews; more reviews, even if they’re not all perfect, can boost your search rankings significantly.

In summary…

Local SEO has its own unique tactics. If you’re a local organization and not using these local SEO tactics, you’re missing people in your community.

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When we onboard a local church, school, ministry or business with an SEO service, we make sure the keyword research and on-page optimization focus on the cities they’re targeting. We also take care of the setup, verification, and optimization of their Google Business Profile and local listings.

If you’d like to discuss church SEO or Christian SEO for your business, school or ministry, with one of our SEO experts, fill out the consultation request form below.

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    About the author

    Paul Steinbrueck

    Paul Steinbrueck is co-founder and CEO of OurChurch.Com, husband, father of 3, blogger. You can follow him on Twitter at @PaulSteinbrueck.


    • Hmmm… I got the point. But My question is Which one is more effective to increase site traffic ?? Local SEO or Normal SEO ??

      • Thanks for reading the post. In the future, please post your comments with your name rather than targeted keywords, so I know your comment is genuine and not simply a link building campaign.

    • Local SEO and Normal SEO both are important to increase traffic and after seeing your video I totally agree with you. Both are useful to optimize your website.

      • Thanks for the comment. Seemed a bit spammy though so the text and link were removed.

    • Outstanding post however I was wondering if you could
      write a litte more on this topic? I’d be very thankful if you could elaborate a little bit more.
      Bless you!

    • Having read this I thought it was really informative.
      I appreciate you finding the time and effort to put this content together.
      I once again find myself spending a significant amount of time both reading and posting comments.
      But so what, it was still worth it!

    • Write more, thats all I have to say. Literally, it seems as though you relied on the video to make your point.
      You clearly know what youre talking about, why waste your
      intelligence on just posting videos to your
      blog when you could be giving us something enlightening to read?