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03 February 2018

Step-By-Step Guide To Master Local SEO In The Cayman Islands

Search Engine Optimization is now what TV and Radio were in ancient times - a modern effective marketing tool to reach your potential audience. However, the false perception of SEO being powerful only businesses dealing online, might act like a blinders to prevent you from seeing its opportunities for your brick-and-mortar business.

With the help of Local Search Optimization strategies, you help people in the Cayman Islands to reach you, ultimately leading to increase foot traffic. But what is Local SEO?

Local Search Engine Optimization

Local SEO is a process that helps local businesses (that serve customers face-to-face) enhance their visibility on the SERPs, and enables the nearby audience to find them easily. It generates the traffic from location-based searching.

According to Search Engine Watch, Google ‘near me’ searches have increased twofold, denoting the fact that people are searching online for services near their location. This makes it cardinal for businesses to optimize their business website for local search.

How to Get Listed on Google Maps in the Cayman Islands
'Local Business SEO - Cayman Islands

If the above fact is not enough, the following statistics based on the research conducted by Google itself, will compel you to adopt local SEO services without any delay:

  • 4 in 5 consumers use search engines to find local information.
  • 50% of consumers who conducted a local search on their smartphone visited a store within a day.
  • 18% of local searches on smartphones lead to a purchase within a day vs. 7% of non-local searches.

So what’s the significance of these facts to your business? Well, unlike searches that don’t convert, people are searching locally, and moreover, the majority of searches convert within a day, accentuating the magnitude of local SEO for small businesses in the Cayman Islands.

Just like how every fair play is the result of ground rules, Google Local SEO also has had many updates in order to set an unbiased platform for every local business, and immunize them from duplicity and other hazards. So what steps, in particular, did Google take?

Some of the Important Google Updates for Local Search Engine Marketing

  • An algorithm was launched on 24th July 2014 to provide a completely new level of accuracy in local search results. This update integrated the results of Google map and web search, effectively following the conventional web ranking signals, and offered results that are more relevant. This was the biggest Local update by Google.
  • On 1st September 2016, a new Google algorithm was introduced to overcome the shortcomings of the local search result. There was a major shift from 7-pack to 3-pack model, and the relevant physical results therefrom saw a major spike in their local ranking. More weight was given to the physical location of the business, and the local filter ran independently from that of the organic filter, thereby enhancing the chances for businesses to rank.
  • The most recent update of Google was launched on August 22, 2017. This update is more focused on the filter results. Previously the listing was filtered based on distance. If a certain location had many ice cream parlors’, the local results would swipe out few of them, and display only some results depending on their organic ranking and keywords relevance, and thereby created a negative impact on many local businesses. However, this update tightened the distance filter.

Now that you are fully aware of the steps taken by search engines to ensure fair listing of local businesses, and the significance of Local SEO for your business, start building the strategies.

But how to start and what to do?

Glad you asked! Below are some important tactics that will get you started, and help you optimize your local business listing.

Important Tips for Building Robust SEO Strategies:

1. Optimize Bing and Google My Business Listing

Listing on Google My Business and Bing place has become unavoidable for local businesses. They play a bigger role than just a directory, as they are tagged. Google my business information is integrated with the Google search, map and Google+. Thus, reflecting the information on each of these.

Claim your accounts on Bing and Google place and add each information accurately, matching your website. The next thing in line is to provide a brief and engaging description, additional attributes, business hours, and so on. Make sure you fill every detail. The process is similar and simple for both Bing and Google.

Optimize Bing and Google My Business Listing
Optimize Bing and Google My Business Listing

2. Solid Local Link Building

Touted as the most difficult and important factor in SEO, link building is the best way to increase the credibility of your business, and is considered by Google as one of the top ranking factors. This helps you in building a reputation and sending referral traffic.

Link your business with local clubs or city magazines. Being visited majorly by the local public, they will provide you maximum audience. Backlink only with whom you want to be associated, hence, it is best to do thorough research. Remember - Local SEO is all about building relationships.

3. Online Directories, Maps & Citations

People use search engines to find local information, and according to sources, 86% of them look up the location of a business on Google Maps.

This makes the listing on popular directories like Yelp, Merchant Circle, Better Business Bureau, Google, and Bing, along with local directories, essentially important for businesses. Make sure that you provided details with correct abbreviations, punctuations, number, name, etc., because discrepancies are not taken well by Google, and it might not show your business in search results at all.

4. Consistent Content Marketing

Content marketing forms an important strategy for any business. According to Hubspot, 72% of online marketers describe content creation as their most effective SEO tactic.

Usually, local SEO gives high value to the citation, maps, and local directories. They are important, but constructing locally focused content will make you distinctive from others. To quote Robert Rose - Marketing is telling the world that you’re a rock star. Content marketing is showing the world that you are.

So, begin with creating a blog, and write content about your town environs and niche-explain the superiority of your products and services.

5. Optimize for Voice Search Queries

Google proclaimed that 20% of mobile search queries are voice search. This is further predicted to increase by almost 50% by 2020. It is best to start optimizing your website accordingly because this trend does not seem to be going away.

Focus on long tail keywords that sound more like a conversation, rather than targeting the smaller keywords, and include them in your content. Remember the way you communicate with virtual assistants like Google, Siri, Echo, and prepare a list of questions to create a Section for frequently asked questions (FAQs) relevant to your business.

Wrap Up: Conclusion

It is clear why local businesses located in the Cayman Islands must get their business online. Even though frequent updates tailor the way local SEO works, by following the above tips, you can easily construct a sturdy presence online and expand your business. The process can be a bit tricky and tedious, but you can always assign the task to Netclues, your local SEO experts. So what are you waiting for? Get ready to flourish your business online, today!

Why You Should Not Press Pause on Your SEO Efforts
Written by Jay Mehta

Jay Mehta is the Internet Marketing & Sales Executive at Netclues for over a decade. Jay has been a marketer, content writer, blogger, advertiser, project manager and a knowledge base for several business in the Cayman Islands and he has had many publications in the industry.

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