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Winning the Local SEO Game: Outrank Your Competition

Learn how to outrank your competition in local search with actionable SEO strategies, Google My Business tips, and effective local citations.

GoSite Team


Winning the Local SEO Game: Outrank Your Competition

Understanding how to outrank your competition in local search is the key to keeping your business visible and thriving in a specific geographic area. When potential customers search for services nearby, being the first name they see can make all the difference.

Quick Tips to Outrank Your Competition in Local Search:

  1. Ensure your NAP (name, address, and phone number) is consistent across all platforms.
  2. Build accurate local citations.
  3. Optimize your Google My Business profile with complete and verified data.
  4. Integrate local keywords into your website content.
  5. Optimize your site for mobile use and AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages).

Imagine the last time you searched for a nearby service on your phone. Did you click the first link that popped up? That seamless visibility is crafted by an effective local SEO strategy.

Ready to dive deeper? Let's explore how you can boost your digital presence and leave your competitors behind.

Summary of Local SEO Strategies - how to outrank your competition in local search infographic infographic-line-3-steps

Understanding Local SEO

Local SEO is all about making sure people nearby can find your business online when they search for services or products you offer. This involves optimizing your online presence to appear in local search results on platforms like Google and Bing. Here's how to get started:

NAP Consistency

NAP stands for Name, Address, and Phone number. Ensuring that your business's NAP is consistent across all online platforms is crucial. Inconsistent NAP information can confuse search engines and hurt your local search rankings.

Example: If your address is listed as "1234 Blairs Ferry Rd." on one site and "1234 Blairsferry Road" on another, it can negatively impact your rankings. Make sure your NAP is the same everywhere, from your website to Yelp and Facebook.

Local Citations

A local citation is any online mention of your business's NAP. These citations can appear on local business directories, websites, apps, and social platforms. They help improve your local search engine rankings.

Key Places for Citations:

  • Yelp
  • Yellowpages
  • FourSquare
  • Better Business Bureau (BBB)
  • Angie’s List

Just like with NAP, make sure your information is accurate and consistent across all these platforms.

Google My Business

Your Google My Business (GMB) profile is one of the most important factors for local SEO. It helps your business appear in local search results and on Google Maps.

Tips for optimizing your GMB profile: - Enter complete data including your NAP, business hours, and categories. - Verify your location(s). - Keep your hours accurate. - Manage and respond to reviews. - Add photos of your business.

Screenshot 2024-07-02 at 8.52.41 AMSierra Vista Maintenance is a local window cleaning company with an optimized Google Business Profile.

Bing Places for Business

Don’t ignore Bing. Bing Places for Business is similar to GMB but for the Bing search engine. It’s essential for reaching users who prefer Bing over Google.

Steps to optimize:

  • Claim your business listing.
  • Ensure your NAP is consistent.
  • Add photos and business hours.
  • Encourage reviews.

By maintaining accurate and consistent information across these platforms, you can significantly improve your local search visibility.

Next up, let's dive into how to perform competitor research to understand what it takes to outrank them.

How to Outrank Your Competition in Local Search

Perform Competitor Research

To outrank your competition in local search, start with competitor research. Understanding your competitors' strengths and weaknesses helps you shape your strategy.

Steps to Perform Competitor Research:

  1. Identify Top Competitors: Use tools like Google Search and SEMrush to find who ranks for your target keywords.
  2. Analyze Their Keywords: Look at the keywords they use. Tools like Google Keyword Planner can help.
  3. Evaluate Their Content: See what type of content they produce—blogs, videos, or infographics.
  4. Check Their Backlinks: Use tools like Ahrefs to see where their backlinks come from.

By understanding what your competitors are doing, you can find gaps and opportunities to outperform them.

Optimize Your Google My Business Profile

Your Google Business Profile (GBP) is crucial for local SEO. An optimized profile can significantly boost your visibility.

Steps to Optimize GBP:

  • Complete Your Profile: Fill out all fields, including NAP, business hours, and categories.
  • Verify Your Location: Ensure your business location is verified.
  • Add Photos: High-quality photos of your business can attract more clicks.
  • Manage Reviews: Respond to all reviews, both positive and negative.

Regularly updating your GBP ensures you stay relevant and visible.

Build Local Citations

Local citations are mentions of your business on other websites. They help improve your search engine ranking.

Key Places for Local Citations:

  • Yelp
  • Yellowpages
  • FourSquare
  • BBB
  • Angie’s List

Ensure your NAP is consistent across all these platforms. Inconsistent information can hurt your rankings.

Optimize Website Content for Local Keywords

Including local keywords in your website content is essential for local SEO.

Where to Include Local Keywords:

  • Title Tag
  • Meta Description
  • H1 Tag
  • Body Text
  • URL Structure
  • Alt Text on Images

For example, if you own a bakery in Austin, use keywords like "best bakery in Austin" throughout your site.

Encourage Online User Reviews

User reviews can make or break your local SEO efforts. Positive reviews boost your credibility and ranking.

Platforms for Reviews:

  • Google Business Profile
  • Yelp
  • Trip Advisor
  • FourSquare

Encourage satisfied customers to leave reviews and always respond to them. This shows you value customer feedback and helps build trust.

By following these steps, you can outrank your competition in local search and attract more customers to your business.

Next, we’ll explore technical SEO strategies to further improve your local search ranking.

Technical SEO for Local Search

Improve Site Speed and User Experience

Technical SEO is crucial for local search success. A key aspect is site speed. Slow-loading sites frustrate users and harm your ranking. Google has made it clear: faster sites rank better.

Here’s how to improve your site speed:

  1. Optimize images: Compress images before uploading them. Tools like TinyPNG help reduce file sizes without losing quality.
  2. Minify CSS and JavaScript: Remove unnecessary code to speed up your site. Tools like Minifier can help.
  3. Enable browser caching: This allows browsers to store some elements of your site, reducing load times for returning visitors.

Use Google’s PageSpeed Insights to test your site's speed and get specific recommendations.

Mobile optimization is equally important. More than 50% of web traffic comes from mobile devices. Ensure your site is mobile-friendly by:

  • Choosing a responsive theme: Your site should adjust to different screen sizes.
  • Checking mobile previews: Use your website builder’s mobile preview mode to see how your pages look on phones and tablets.
  • Limiting horizontal scrolling: Design your site so users don’t need to scroll left and right.

Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test can help you check if your site is optimized for mobile.

Implement Schema Markup

Schema markup is a form of structured data that helps search engines understand your content better. This can lead to enhanced visibility in search results.

Here’s how to implement schema markup:

  1. Use the Local Business Schema Generator: This free tool helps you create the necessary code. Simply input your business details, and it generates the schema markup for you.
  2. Add the code to your HTML: Insert the generated schema code into your website’s HTML. This helps search engines display accurate information about your business.
  3. Validate your schema: Use Google’s Structured Data Testing Tool to ensure there are no errors in your schema markup.

Types of schema markup to consider:

  • Local business schema: Includes your business name, address, and phone number (NAP).
  • Product schema: Provides details about your products, like price and availability.
  • Review schema: Displays customer reviews directly in search results.

By improving site speed and implementing schema markup, you enhance both user experience and search engine understanding of your site. This can significantly boost your local search ranking.

Next, we’ll dive into leveraging backlinks and local partnerships to further elevate your local SEO game.

Leveraging Backlinks and Local Partnerships

To outrank your competition in local search, you need more than just a well-optimized website. Backlinks and local partnerships play a crucial role in boosting your online visibility and authority.

High-Quality Backlinks

Backlinks are links from other websites to yours. They signal to search engines that your site is credible and valuable. But not all backlinks are created equal. You want high-quality backlinks from authoritative websites.

Why are they important?

  • Authority: Links from reputable sites boost your site's authority.
  • Referral Traffic: They can drive traffic directly to your site.
  • SEO Boost: Search engines see these links as votes of confidence.

How to get them?

  1. Guest Blogging: Write articles for authoritative sites in your industry. Include a link back to your site.
  2. Local News: Get featured in local news articles. Reach out to journalists with a compelling story.
  3. Industry Forums: Participate in industry forums and online communities, sharing your expertise and including a link to your site in your profile or signature.

Local Partnerships

Building local partnerships can also enhance your local SEO. Collaborate with other local businesses, influencers, and organizations.

Why are they valuable?

  • Increased Visibility: Partnering with local entities puts your business in front of their audience.
  • Mutual Benefits: Both parties can benefit from shared audiences and resources.
  • Community Trust: Being active in the local community builds trust and credibility.

How to form partnerships?

  1. Event Sponsorships: Sponsor local events and get your business name mentioned in event promotions.
  2. Collaborations: Partner with local businesses for joint promotions or events.
  3. Local Influencers: Collaborate with local influencers to reach a broader audience.

Media Attention

Getting media attention can provide a significant boost to your local SEO. Local news outlets and blogs can write about your business, providing valuable backlinks and increasing your visibility.

How to get media attention?

  1. Press Releases: Send out press releases for significant business updates or events.
  2. Pitch Stories: Pitch unique and newsworthy stories to local journalists and bloggers.
  3. Community Involvement: Be active in community projects. This can attract media coverage.

Event Sponsorship

Sponsoring local events is a fantastic way to gain visibility and backlinks. When you sponsor an event, your business is often mentioned in promotional materials, press releases, and event websites.

Benefits of event sponsorship:

  • Brand Awareness: Your brand gets in front of a local audience.
  • Backlinks: Event websites often link back to sponsor websites.
  • Community Engagement: Shows your business is invested in the local community.

How to choose events to sponsor?

  1. Relevance: Choose events that align with your business and target audience.
  2. Visibility: Ensure the event has good local media coverage.
  3. Engagement: Look for events that offer opportunities for direct engagement with attendees.

By leveraging high-quality backlinks and forming local partnerships, you can significantly improve your local search rankings. Next, we’ll explore how voice search and digital assistants can further enhance your local SEO strategy.

Voice Search and Digital Assistants

Voice search is changing the way people find local businesses. 65% of 25-49-year-olds speak to their voice-enabled devices at least once a day. This means optimizing for voice search is crucial if you want to outrank your competition in local search.

Understanding Voice Search

Voice search is different from text search. People use conversational phrases when they speak to devices like Siri, OK Google, and Amazon Echo. For example, instead of typing "best pizza NYC," someone might say, "Hey Siri, where's the best pizza near me?"

Optimize for Conversational Phrases

To rank well in voice search, you need to understand how people ask questions. Use these tips:

  • Include Question Words: Incorporate who, what, when, where, and how into your content.
  • Use Natural Language: Write in a conversational tone. Think about how people talk, not just how they type.
  • FAQ Sections: Add a detailed FAQ section to your website. This helps capture the exact phrases people use when asking voice assistants.

Claim Your Listings

Different voice assistants pull data from different sources:

  • Siri: Uses Apple Maps Connect and Yelp.
  • Google Assistant: Relies on Google My Business.
  • Amazon Alexa: Pulls from Yelp and Yext.

Ensure your business is listed and updated on these platforms. Uniform information across all listings helps search engines accurately identify and rank your business.

Improve User Experience

User experience is key for voice search optimization. Here’s how to enhance it:

  • Fast Load Speed: Aim for load times under 4.6 seconds. Use Google’s PageSpeed Insights to check your speed.
  • Mobile Optimization: Ensure your site is mobile-friendly. Most voice searches are done on mobile devices.
  • Secure HTTPS Site: Security is a ranking factor. Make sure your site uses HTTPS.

Local Content and Schema Markup

Voice search often focuses on local content. Make sure to:

  • Write Local Content: Blog about local events, attractions, and news.
  • Use Schema Markup: Implement speakable schema markup to help search engines understand your content. This increases the chance of being featured in voice search results.

By following these steps, you can optimize your business for voice search and digital assistants, giving you a competitive edge in local SEO. Next, we’ll dive into local PPC strategies to further boost your visibility.

Local PPC Strategies

Local PPC (Pay-Per-Click) strategies can supercharge your visibility and help you outrank your competition in local search. Here's how you can effectively use local PPC to get ahead.

Google Adwords and Geographic Targeting

Google Adwords is a powerful tool for local PPC campaigns. By targeting specific geographic areas, you can ensure your ads are seen by potential customers in your vicinity.

Steps to Get Started:

  1. Identify Clear Goals and Target Audience: Know who you want to reach and what you want to achieve.
  2. Conduct Keyword Research: Use tools like Google’s Keyword Planner to find keywords relevant to your local area.
  3. Set Up Geographic Targeting: Limit your ad visibility to specific locations where your potential customers are.

Competitive Industry Tactics

In a competitive industry, standing out is crucial. Here are some tactics to help you gain an edge:

  • Use Keyword Match Types and Negative Keywords: Control which searches trigger your ads. This ensures you reach the right audience and avoid irrelevant clicks.
  • Create Compelling Ad Copy and Landing Pages: Your ad copy should be enticing, and your landing pages should align with your ads to boost conversions.

Pay-Per-Click Ad Campaigns

Running a successful PPC campaign involves more than just setting up ads. Here are key elements to focus on:

  • Optimize Ad Extensions and Site Links: Use ad extensions to provide extra information and links to specific pages on your site.
  • Improve Your Ad Quality Score: Google rewards high-quality, relevant ads with better positions and lower costs. Ensure your ads and landing pages are highly relevant to your keywords.

Local PPC Best Practices

To maximize your local PPC efforts, follow these best practices:

  1. Use Ad Retargeting: Target users who have previously visited your site but didn't convert. This keeps your business top-of-mind.
  2. Monitor Your Ad Performance: Regularly check metrics like Click-Through Rate (CTR), Cost-Per-Click (CPC), and Return on Investment (ROI) to ensure your campaigns are effective.
  3. Adjust Bids Based on Performance: Increase bids for high-performing keywords and reduce them for underperforming ones.

By implementing these local PPC strategies, you can effectively outrank your competition in local search and drive more traffic to your business. Next, we’ll answer some frequently asked questions about local SEO.

Frequently Asked Questions about Local SEO

How to outrank your competition in local search exam answers?

To outrank your competition in local search, you need a multi-faceted strategy. Here are some key elements:

  1. Keyword Research and Local Keyword Analysis:
  2. Identify the terms your target audience is searching for.
  3. Use tools like Ahrefs or Semrush to find local keywords relevant to your business.

  4. Competitor Research:

  5. Analyze the top-ranking competitors in your area.
  6. Understand their strengths and weaknesses to find opportunities for improvement.

  7. Local SEO Strategies:

  8. Optimize your Google Business Profile (GBP) by ensuring your NAP (Name, Address, Phone number) is consistent across all platforms.
  9. Build local citations on directories like Yelp and Yellowpages.
  10. Encourage customer reviews on platforms like Google and Yelp.

How do you outrank your competition in Google?

To outrank your competition in Google, focus on these core areas:

  1. Content Optimization:
  2. Create high-quality, relevant content that answers your audience's questions.
  3. Use targeted keywords naturally in your titles, meta descriptions, and body text.

  4. Technical SEO:

  5. Ensure your website is mobile-friendly and loads quickly.
  6. Use schema markup to help search engines understand your content better.

  7. Site Speed and User Experience:

  8. Improve your page load speed using tools like Google’s PageSpeed Insights.
  9. Make your website easy to navigate to enhance user experience.

How to dominate local search?

To dominate local search, you need a comprehensive approach:

  1. Google Business Profile:
  2. Keep your profile updated with accurate information.
  3. Add high-quality images of your business and products.
  4. Respond to reviews promptly to show you value customer feedback.

  5. Accurate Information:

  6. Ensure your NAP is consistent across all online platforms.
  7. Regularly update your business hours and services.

  8. High-Quality Images and Reviews:

  9. Upload clear, appealing photos that represent your business well.
  10. Encourage satisfied customers to leave positive reviews.

By implementing these strategies, you'll be well on your way to outranking your competition in local search and establishing a strong online presence.


In today's competitive landscape, mastering local SEO is crucial for any service area business. At GoSite, we understand the importance of a robust local SEO strategy to help you outrank your competition in local search.

GoSite's Local Search Tools

We offer a suite of tools designed to enhance your online presence and drive customer engagement. Our services ensure your business details are consistent across various platforms, boosting your visibility and credibility.

Online Presence Tools

With GoSite, maintaining accurate and up-to-date business information across multiple online directories becomes effortless. Consistency in your NAP (name, address, phone number) is vital for search engines and helps customers find you easily.

Google-Optimized Website

We will create a professional, mobile-friendly website optimized for Google search. A well-designed website is your digital storefront, essential for attracting and converting online visitors.

Online Directory Listings

GoSite ensures your business is accurately listed in over 70 directories, including major platforms like Google My Business and Yelp. Accurate listings improve your SEO, helping you rank higher in local searches.

Convert Online Visitors

Our tools are designed to turn website visitors into loyal customers. Features like instant messaging, appointment booking, and payment processing make it easy for customers to engage with your business.

Customer Reviews

Positive reviews are crucial for building trust and improving your local search rankings. GoSite helps you manage and encourage customer reviews, enhancing your online reputation.

Business Growth

By leveraging GoSite's comprehensive online presence tools, you can expect significant business growth. Our mission is to provide you with the tools and support needed to succeed in today's digital market.

Ready to dominate local search and grow your business? Learn more about GoSite's local search tools for service businesses.

With GoSite, the path to a stronger online presence and increased customer engagement is clear. Let's work together to ensure your business stands out in local search results and continues to thrive.

GoSite Team
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