For many businesses, it can be essential to focus on the market that’s closest to your doorstep even more than the wider world around you. When it comes to life as a brick-and-mortar brand, local leads are your bread and butter, but how do you access them?
Firstly, let’s look at the key differences between local lead generation and more general lead generation. Both concepts carry the same core principles, but with local lead generation, it’s important to apply your techniques within designated parameters.
The great thing about local lead generation is that your audience is generally easier to convert. This is because there is less competition in the local area than in more congested online industries.
In addition to this, customers love visiting stores. According to a recent Retail Dive Consumer Survey, 62% of customers would rather have an in-store experience because of how it can enable them to get to grips with products before deciding to make a purchase.
From a customer perspective, the perks of the brick-and-mortar experience include:
- The ability to access their products instantly
- Accessing an immersive in-store shopping experience
- Asking questions and getting a response in real-time
Given that many customers prefer shopping in-store and the relative lack of competition locally, it’s essential that your business works to leverage local leads through its marketing channels.
But how can you earn more local leads and receive more in-store visitors through optimisation tactics? Let’s explore four creative approaches to help bolster your local lead generation to win more customers:
Go Local With Your SEO
Local SEO helps to make your business more visible to your target audience based in a specific geographic location, making it much easier for them to discover you, access key information about your business, and act on their interest.
So, how does local SEO differ from more conventional search engine optimisation approaches? Firstly, search engines are constantly on the lookout for indications about whether a business is relevant to a certain region or area.
If Google can understand that you’re based in a specific location, it will alter how your business is displayed to search users who are based nearby and are running queries that are relevant to your firm and its industry.
Local SEO can also alter how your website would look on SERPs. To help search engines categorise you as a local business, you can add citations, directories, relevant landing pages, keywording, and localised social media profiles.
There are a number of excellent tools online that can help you to optimise your local SEO, like Semrush, but Google My Business is a free directory that can help your business to become verified by Google to arrange how your business shows up on search results and in Maps.
When providing your business with a local SEO makeover, Google My Business is an essential consideration. By adding your presence to the platform, your company will be visible for local searches and can even offer an embedded social proof with a visible customer rating.
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Make the Most of Local Keywords
Online business and digital marketing expert Jussi Hyvärinen notes that keywording is a vital component in leveraging local leads.
“Incorporate local-specific keywords in your content, meta descriptions, and ads. Tools like Google Keyword Planner can provide insights into popular local search queries, helping you tailor your content and SEO efforts,” explains Hyvärinen in his comprehensive guide to local lead generation.
But how can this localised keywording be achieved? The best way to approach local keywords is formulaic:
Modifier + Core Term + Location = Local Keyword
By identifying your core terms, you can make them more focused and valuable for search engines with the help of modifiers. Then, by adding your location, you can find yourself with the perfect term to drive local leads back to your website.
While Google Keyword Planner is a great tool for accessing local keywords, another excellent option is Ahrefs, which offers a colour-coded keyword difficulty gauge to help you know how and where to add your modifiers.
Let’s imagine you’re a pet grooming business based in Wisconsin. Crucially, Ahrefs also features a ‘keyword ideas’ section in its Keyword Explorer, which helps to showcase which modifiers you can use.
The use of a traffic light system to denote keyword difficulty is a great help for businesses seeking strong insights into which modifiers they can use. With the term ‘pet grooming near me’ receiving the highest volume of searches, this can be easily amended to ‘pet grooming in Wisconsin’ for a great chance at lead generation, while other modifiers like ‘mobile pet grooming in Wisconsin’ can see plenty of low competition traffic also.
Leverage Local Social Media
Social media is another great place to go local to generate more leads for your business. Many platforms serve as an excellent means of connecting with your customers to generate leads through online interactions.
With this in mind, it’s important to use social media to post content that your target audience will find relevant and engaging. Similarly, it’s worth using social media ads to reach a more focused network of potential leads.
In addition to this, many social media networks like Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram allow more local optimisation techniques like pinning your location to your profile, which can help those engaging with your content discover your physical locations far more quickly.
Utilise Focused Ads
The beauty of local lead generation ads online is that you can get a far greater ROI because you’re targeting people in specific areas. Both Google Ads and Microsoft Ads offer ways for businesses to target their ads at individuals located in certain geographic areas, and this means that you can spend your budget only on the customers who have the best opportunity to buy your goods or services based on their location.
Building Sustainable Local SEO
If you’re looking to sell both online and in-store, local SEO can be a great technique when used sparingly alongside more conventional SEO practices.
By allocating time to identify more local keyword opportunities and by regularly updating your business details on Google My Business, local SEO can help to ensure that you receive a steady stream of customers back to your store, which can continue to generate new leads even at a time when you may have paused your marketing campaigns.
In addition to this, keeping your local SEO in check can help to present your business as a more resourceful and trustworthy organisation for those looking to buy from you online, making this a key consideration that can continue to pay dividends long into the future.