Local SEO for B2B: A Complete Guide for Local Businesses
Dec 5, 2022 | 4 MINUTES TO READ
Summary: Local SEO practices for B2B businesses differ from those of B2C businesses. Learning what you can do to maximize your leads can be beneficial for your company.
Local SEO is usually thought of in the context of B2C (or business-to-customer) markets. Small businesses like barbers, florists, restaurants, and all kinds of retail shops depend on foot traffic to survive, and they use local SEO to get it.
B2B (or business-to-business) local SEO is slightly different. While B2B businesses rarely get much revenue from leads they obtain through foot traffic, it is still worth their while to become established as an authority in their local industry sphere.
If your B2B business does not have a comprehensive local SEO strategy in place, some of your local leads may be turning to competitors who are more well-known in your area. Our guide to local SEO for B2B businesses will help you change that.
Table of Contents
Start with the Basics: Local SEO for B2B
Effective local SEO must be built on a strong foundation. Before you begin implementing more specific measures, ensure that your site has the basics in order. You should have:
- Keyword research that is informed by in-depth knowledge of your audience’s needs and search patterns
- Keyword qualifiers that specify the geographical area of the searcher, such as “near me” or the names of cities and towns in your service area
- Good technical SEO that emphasizes website performance, navigation, and page structure
- Plenty of local keywords in structurally significant places like the headings, title, and meta descriptions
- A robust set of internal and external links to establish authority and help users and Google better navigate your website
- A full and detailed competitor analysis to reveal the finer points of your competitors’ strategies and determine how best to overtake them in the search rankings
Consider hiring local SEO services for this part of the process. This ensures that you start things off on the right foot and can enjoy the full benefits of good local SEO later on.
Schema is HTML markups that tell Google what your website is about. They can only be seen by Google’s crawler bots, not regular users.
Tagging your business’ contact data and other details using small business schema will not only improve your search ranks but also standardize the presentation of your information and give you a chance to appear in mapped search results. These things make local consumers more likely to find you and to click on your link from the results page.
You can also use schema to tag other structural elements on your page. For example, you can tag your FAQ section as questions and answers. This gives this content the opportunity to be featured in prominent text snippets in the search results.
Optimize Your Google Business Profile
Your Google Business Profile is one of the key tools your business has to help you strive for better visibility online. Without one, your business will not be eligible to appear in Google’s coveted local pack search results or on Google Maps. This is because the profile system is what allows Google to validate that a particular business is real.
First, you will need to claim your Google Business Profile and verify your location by email, phone, text message, or video. In some cases, you will need to use more than one verification method to be approved. Once you have done this, your profile will begin to show up on Google results for relevant keywords.
Your profile should contain your business’ name, street address, phone number, website, and hours of operation. Your business’ address does not have to be used for actively meeting clients. Online-only businesses may be registered under the owner’s personal address.
The more information you can add to your Google Business Profile, the better. Think about what kind of details would be helpful to your customers and add them to your profile. Remember that many people’s first point of contact with your business will be through the formatted search results that Google provides. Having a complete profile builds credibility and assists your leads in doing research before deciding to visit your business.
Your Google Business Profile is also a great place to display your company’s reviews. These appear publicly under your business’ Google listing, so you stand to attract a lot more attention if you can get a good overall rating. Encourage your customers to leave reviews and respond graciously to all reviews you receive, even if they are negative.
Shine a Spotlight on Your NAP
Your business’ NAP (name, address, and phone number) is the most important piece of information for local SEO. This information lets Google know where your business so it can be properly listed on Google Maps. Your NAP is also what most users who come to your website or see your Google Business Profile will be looking for.
Your NAP should be part of every one of your business listings across the web, including on external platforms like Yelp and TripAdvisor. It is also important to keep it consistent from listing to listing. Decide on a standardized version of your nap, including any abbreviations and special formatting. Then, use that exact format on every listing you put up. This ensures that Google always knows you are referring to the same business.
Manage Your Local Listings
In addition to the general directories that everyone uses, businesses should always have listings in online directories that cater specifically to their local area. Look into getting your business listed on the website for your city’s chamber of commerce or a local trade association. This lets Google know that your website is considered important within your community.
If you cannot find good local directories on your own, there are many paid listing tools that can help you with this problem. You can also hire a local SEO company to do the job for you. Doing this sets your company up with a solid foundation of local directory listings that will only need minor additions and updates in future years.
Request (and Respond to) Reviews
Reviews are one of the most important things that customers look for when considering purchasing from a company. Positive reviews significantly impact consumer trust and make successful conversions much more likely.
Reviews are even more important in the context of B2B sales. B2B business deals are often worth many thousands of dollars. With so much on the line, it is easy to see why good reviews are so highly prized. They let your customers know that they are making a good investment.
Ask your customers to leave reviews after they purchase from you, and make sure to respond promptly to each one – especially the negative ones. Doing this gives you a chance to demonstrate your business’ commitment to excellent customer service and willingness to go the extra mile for the companies you work with.
Become the Local Expert
Publishing quality content is a key strategy in general SEO that can work just as well in the smaller world of local SEO. The goal is to establish your company as a leading authority on your industry within your geographic area.
To do this, start creating and publishing a variety of helpful multimedia content that your leads will find useful. Blog posts are a classic form of content marketing, but other forms like videos, podcasts, and infographics also work well. Use keywords that specifically reference your business’ location and link them back to the appropriate product or service pages.
Engage with the Community
Local SEO is all about building community trust, so it is important to demonstrate that your commitment to serving your city also extends offline. Join local business and trade associations, host special events for local residents, and sponsor local sports teams or charitable organizations. These actions will have no direct effect on your local SEO, but they will improve your visibility in your community. They will also give you plenty of opportunities to secure valuable local backlinks that will boost your search ranks in sufficient quantities.
Mind Your Competition
In its most basic terms, local SEO is a contest. Only a handful of websites can hold those coveted top search ranks. If you want one, you will have to surpass many of your fellow competitors. While excellent performance in general will go a long way toward accomplishing this goal, you will have the best chances of succeeding with a professional competitor analysis.
These analyses examine every facet of your competitors’ strategies from the keywords they use and the content they publish to their website’s technical SEO and backlink strategy. Once you understand how they have achieved their success, you can adopt some of their most effective techniques and build on them to make them even more impactful.
Always Put Humans First
Finally, remember that although local SEO for B2B businesses is different from SEO for B2C businesses, you are still marketing to a human audience. Google recognizes and rewards websites that put their users first. All of your marketing should be crafted to serve the needs of the people who represent the organizations they serve. Always prioritize helpfulness and ease of use. This builds trust in your audience and positions your company as a partner they can count on to help their organization succeed.
Give Your B2B Company a Boost with Industry-Leading Local SEO in Toronto
If you have not put much thought into your company’s local SEO efforts, now is the time to begin investing in this crucial component of your marketing strategy. WSI Comandix is one of Toronto’s top local SEO companies with over 25 years of experience in the field. Our targeted, multipronged approach is sure to delight your customers while also helping you climb the search ranks ladder. Contact us today to book a consultation appointment and learn more about the wide scope of our local SEO services.
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