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Local Search Optimization Guide

Local Search Optimization Guide

What is Local Optimization? 

Our local search optimization guide was created to help you find the information you need to optimize your online business profile for increase rankings in local search results. Before we get into some of the basics of Local SEO, here is a quick menu for anyone that wants to jump to specific sections right away:

A Free Guide to Improving Local Search Rankings in Canada – a downloadable guide to help our fellow Canadians improve their local search engine rankings.

A Free Guide to Improving Local Search Rankings in the USA – a downloadable guide for improving local search rankings in the United States.
– Coming Soon, follow our web marketing blog to be alerted as soon as it is released.

What are Local Search Rankings and What is Local SEO?

Local SEO is an exciting new avenue for additional online presence and increasing your bottom line.

Where people search and how they search have altered the way in which the search engines now provide results. The search engines (Google, Bing, etc.) are placing businesses in the search listings according to geographic location and the businesses don’t even need a website to get a ranking!These local search results are often placed above (or at least somewhere within) the organic listings that we are most familiar with when a highly localized search is conducted (i.e. “location + search term”). For example, you can get an idea of what a local search listing looks like by typing in the search bar ‘Victoria BC pet friendly hotel’.


Greater local business exposure can increase you online presence and ultimately your revenue. In order to build a local search ranking you need to consider a few core components:

  • You need to authenticate your ownership of your business with Google and Bing and other local directories to make your website’s listings official.
    Important Note: This is a critical step whether or not you intend to do local search because without claiming your business profile you leave it to the mercy of potential identity thieves.
  • Verify or add your business address information on internet yellow page providers (IYPs)
  • Encode your address information into your website (if you have a website) with the hCard microformat; this is just a behind-the-scenes code that is added to your address information to make it easier to understand for search engines when they visit your site.
  • Build your business’s local search presence by establishing listings in local search sites and directories and try to get press from bloggers and news providers in your area.
  • Create and implement a geo-sitemap on your website
  • Build an assortment of reviews for your business through customer outreach.
  • And more.

If you need help StepForth can help you get started and can manage the entire process if you wish; it isn’t rocket science but it does take time. Through a more thorough audit of your website we can consult and/or perform hands-on implementation on getting listed, and where to get listed. To this end, if you would like some help with local rankings please visit our local SEO services page.

Do It Yourselfer’s Rejoice!

If you wish to perform your own local search ranking optimization here are some resources you will find invaluable:

Additionally, here are various articles about Local Search and SEO from StepForth’s Web Marketing Blog.