Dominating Local SEO

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Yesterday I introduced you to John Pepe, owner of Pepe Tile and Installation. He comes up in the number two position for a Google search on “south jersey tile.” I showed you what he did right to earn that position, and talked about a few things he could be doing better. In this article, I’ll cover what he could be doing to dominate his local search space in depth, and give you plenty of suggestions that you can apply to your own website.

So what steps should Pepe take to dominate local SEO?

1) The main site, Pepe Tile and Installation, has to be cleaned up with a much better look and feel. This could easily be done with nearly zero technical know-how by simply using WordPress and a clean-looking two-column theme. As I mentioned yesterday, a better logo for his company could probably be done for as little as $50, and that should also be considered a “must.”

2) Once WordPress is being used, put links to the social networks that he’s using way up top in the sidebar. Use simple 32×32 icons for each of them, and make sure they are linked properly to the profile pages, so people can follow him.

3) Put links to his listings on Google Places, SuperPages, Yelp, and CityVoter. If he doesn’t have accounts at all of these, he should create them. Again, use simple 32X32 icons for these will allow anyone to quickly see user reviews.

At this point, I am going to move to how he can become the undisputed local authority.

I want to reiterate something before I start. These steps could literally be done by anyone in any local market to achieve success. I am using this site only as an example; the steps, however, will work for any site.

4) Offer a small discount to every single customer he does business with from now on if they’ll leave a review and a comment on his Google Places page. His focus should be there, unless his customer has an account somewhere else. In that case, he should give a slightly smaller discount for leaving a review on one of them.

5) Offer another (better) discount if the customer will do a video review on his YouTube channel (if he doesn’t have one, he should start it). Now he’s got actual video testimonials that people can see. The thing to know is that outside of a handful of markets, no one has this or does it. This alone is almost enough to turn him into a major player. All videos should be posted to his WordPress site under a “testimonials” category, so that potential customers can see actual videos of the great things people are saying about him.

5) He should start creating videos of himself talking about how to best use tile (where are the best places to put tile and where should tile not be put), what are the best kinds of tile for certain situations and applications (kitchen, entry way, hallway, outside, etc). He could be doing reviews of the various makers of tile to help his customers make more informed decisions.

Then he could create a video, one for every single customer question he’s ever gotten. Those would also be posted to his site under appropriate categories, making it easy for potential customers to get to them and even reference them later. His WordPress blog would need to include appropriate plugins to make social sharing of his content as easy as possible on as many social sites as possible (Google+, Twitter, and Facebook at a minimum). Every time he creates a video, he should talk about it on his various social media accounts, and link to the WordPress article.

6) Use the Blogger blog as a way of posting things that are relevant to home improvement in general to help expand his audience. He should be paying particularly close attention to video for this. Any time he uses someone else’s video, he should contact them and let them know. Even better would be to take that content created by someone else and expand on it. Sometimes those people will link to you or share your content through their social media networks.

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