Optimizing Citations and NAP Information
Local SEO helps companies compete on a local level; whether you own hundreds or thousands of local locations, the process of SEO is the same. Keyword research and competitive analysis are critical to establishing a strong local SEO strategy. However, with so many local SEO companies vying for business these days, it is difficult to know which ones really offer value. In addition, on-page SEO differs greatly from SEO that emphasizes off page optimization. As your company’s reputation becomes intertwined with that of your area, it is important to choose a company that understands both sides of the local SEO fence.
On-page SEO is all about enhancing the visibility of your company’s brand, products, or services. A successful strategy begins with well-established on-page elements such as compelling copy and a site map. These basic components become the building blocks for any SEO campaign and should be given the same importance as traditional SEO. A well-optimized website will generate high organic traffic, which is free money for your business. On-page SEO requires an investment of time and effort to improve each of these three components.
On-page SEO consists of researching, testing, and implementing methods to boost user experience through different techniques, like meta tags, title tags, and backlinks. Search engine optimization is the art of making pages of your website to rank highly in Google, Yahoo, and MSN search engines for specific keywords or phrases. This involves collecting and analyzing data, and applying tactics based on the information that you find. Many companies use external specialists to handle their SEO campaigns or even work with freelance SEO experts. With the right SEO expertise, you can benefit by improving your business’s standing in search engines and driving more targeted traffic to your web pages.
The second component of on-page SEO involves creating content that effectively pulls target keywords and phrases. A prime example of a key on-page SEO technique is creating local listings for keywords and phrases relevant to the customer’s location. For example, if a bride-to-be in downtown Toronto is looking for a local photographer, she might type in “photograph” in Google, search for local locations, and search the pages of local search results. If she finds one or two listings that match her search criteria, she might click on the listing. If she sees at least five listings, she picks the first five and adds the photographer to her online wedding photo list.
A third important on-page SEO tactic is creating links from websites that are relevant to the customer’s business. Most SEO firms recognize the need for effective linking strategies and incorporate them into their client’s website design and content. Some companies utilize link building techniques that are not considered ethical, such as linking to non-company sites to gain link popularity. Other SEO services may engage in practices such as deceptive link building, where the SEO service intentionally provides links to non-related sites to boost its own ranking.
On-page SEO techniques for SEO purposes tend to focus on the text content of the page rather than the underlying structure or coding. There are a number of excellent tools available to research, develop, and analyze on-page SEO. One such tool is the Open Web Content Management System (OWCMS) developed by Adobe. The Open Web Content Management System is a Content management system (CMS) that is used to manage web sites based upon keywords, categories, and themes. To use the SOPs, an SEO firm must integrate the code with the HTML coding, which can be done by the SEO firm’s in-house or outsourced team.
An SEO firm may also want to consider the benefits of optimizing existing citations. Google’s Certified SEO specialist, Clay Moore, explains that prior to implementing new SEO strategies, clients should look to their existing citations to make sure that they are still optimizing for keywords. Google will examine your existing citations to make sure that you’re targeting the right key terms. By following the guidelines and modifying the URLs according to your clients’ websites, you can see a marked improvement in your website’s ranking performance over time.
As part of the SEO process, SEO firms must take advantage of the linking system in place through the use of naps. Google’s latest Panda update required all companies using nap information to provide additional details about how the links were used. Google recommends that firms create an “About” and” Citation” section within each site and provides a link to the appropriate page within the site for visitors to review these details. Furthermore, Google suggests that SEO firms include naps within their written materials as well as providing them to clients when due for retrieval. Google has warned against using “self-provided” citations, because of the need for the original citations to be linked to the relevant page.