Local SEO Services Toronto

by | Apr 7, 2020 | SEO

Local SEO services are search engine optimization services on the local geographic level your business serves. The main differentiators of local SEO are Google reviews and local citations. However, it’s essential to analyze website speed and links on a local level as well.

What is local SEO?
Local SEO is search engine optimization on a local level. Local SEO is optimizing for keywords searched in Google in the city of your business.

Why is local SEO important?
Local SEO is essential because most small businesses can only serve their local market. Local SEO is about being found on Google, the local market where your customers are.

How does local SEO work?
Local SEO works by those same tactics that work at a national level, allowing them…doing the same tactics on a very local level, such as getting local links, such as thriving on local reviews and things like that.

What does SEO stand for?
SEO stands for search engine optimization. SEO is the term for the effort to have a website appear as a search result on Google for a particular phrase.

Why is local SEO important for SEO?
Local SEO is vital because most business’ customers are local. The goal of local SEO is to focus on a city or region where your customers are.

How can local SEO benefit my business?
Local SEO can help your business because it helps to get more targeted local traffic to your website. Targeted local users who’ll ultimately end up being your customers is the best kind of traffic.

How much does local SEO cost?
Local SEO pricing can be in a wide range. Some services will charge as low as $200/month, and some top-end services could cost several thousand a month.

How do I do a local SEO search?
Typing in any search term which the users expect a local result is a local search. A local search does not need to include the city to be a local search as your browser knows your location.

local seo services toronto

Local SEO Services for Small Business

We provide SEO services for companies that are trying to get ranked on Google for local SEO services. We’re a local SEO services company, and we do this by getting people with helping them get relevant content through on-page SEO, off-page SEO, helping them get better reviews on Google. There’s a myriad of things that you have to do to help rank in Google. In this blog post, we’ll get into most of the tactics you need to consider for local SEO.

Competitor Analysis

As with all levels of SEO, you have to analyze your competitors. The competitors of local SEO may not necessarily be local. Each keyword you’re searching for has a set of competitors, which are the other websites on the search results.

If you’re looking to rank for a specific term, it might be a great term with lots of search traffic. However, if you’re going up against CNN, Wikipedia, WebMD, or other websites that are household names, you have a low chance of ranking for those keywords.

You have to find the right keywords that have a decent amount of traffic with search engine competitors that are relatively not as strong as your website. You can rank for those keywords.

Over time, as you build your brand’s credibility, you can start ranking for more and more competitive search terms. If you’re new or a small business, it’s unlikely you’re ready to rank for competitive terms.

Do a competitor analysis for each keyword, know what your ranking ability is for each phase, and strategize keywords to go after in the immediate future. In the long run, have those competitive terms to chase.

Google My Business

Setting up a Google My Business account is essential. Go to google.com/business to get started. Fill out a little bit of information about your business, and then you’ll receive a postcard by mail, and you put the pin in.

When you see the business profiles on the right-hand sidebar (the knowledge panel) of Google, that is from Google My Business profile. “Are you this business owner?” will appear in the knowledge panel for a business that has not claimed their profile. It’s wise to claim your profile, optimize it, keep it current and manage your reviews.

It’s essential to ask your customers to leave a detailed review of the services they used to be more helpful for potential customers.

The quantity of reviews matter and the target is always moving forward. If you have five reviews, and your competitor has 100 reviews, it’s more likely for Google to rank your competitor with many more reviews. It’s crucial to get reviews, keep on getting reviews, get more and more reviews over time, so Google recognizes that you’re a viable, great business.

Local Citation Building

Citations are having your business listed on directories around the internet. Examples of directories are Yellow Pages, Yelp, and Foursquare. Building citations around the internet is essential. And the way you need to build citations is to have all the information the same.

There’s a lot of great citation companies out there. Whitespark.ca is one of the top ones that come to mind. For a relatively low cost per citation, you can get up to 100 citations. Having your business listed across hundreds of directories, it shows Google that your business is legit.

Keyword Research

You need to target the right keywords. You need to find keywords that your website can rank for on Google that have traffic. Spitting out great blog posts, with great titles, the best content in the world, they’ll be suitable for social media. But no matter how good the material is, if it’s not written with SEO in mind, the content is less likely rank.

On-Page Local SEO

You need to target the right keywords. You need to find keywords that your website can rank for on Google that have traffic. Spitting out great blog posts, with great titles, the best content in the world, they’ll be suitable for social media. But no matter how good the material is, if it’s not written with SEO in mind, the content is less likely rank.

Schema Markup and Structured Data

Schema markup is a technical SEO term that’s becoming more popular. Schema markup tells specifically what specific content is about on your website. It can tell Google in a machine-readable format that your website is also the same as your Facebook page, your LinkedIn page, your Twitter page your Instagram page. It can also tell Google what your address is, your phone number, and other relevant information.

Structured data and schema markup is one more thing that you have to get right the deeper you get into SEO.

Optimizing Page Speed

Google looks at your website’s speed as one of the points for SEO. The faster your website is, the better experience a user will have. If you go to their website, and it’s loading instantly, that’s a better experience than sites that take 5, 6, 7 seconds to load.

If you’re building your website on WordPress, there are enough plugins out there to get you 90% of the way.

A site that takes a long loading time triggers a higher bounce rate. When a user clicks on a search term, and it takes too long to load, they go back to the Google search. Then the user will visit the next search result, and if it loads right away, they’ll start reading the content. The faster your website is, the higher ability it has to rank. And that’s a good thing.

Fixing Broken Elements

Broken elements can include images, pages and, other files you might have deleted. If there are still links on your website that are pointing to broken files, that signals to Google that your site has an issue.

As the user, if you’re visiting a blog post, and you click download PDF, and it doesn’t work, and there are a broke few images, that’s awful user experience. Google recognizes the issue, which will negatively affect your ability to rank.

SEO is about thinking about everything holistically. Having zero problems on your site shows Google that you’re thinking about everything to make your website the best experience for your users.

URLs and Site Structure Optimization

URLs on your website are critical. Have your exact keyword in your URL.

It’s best to have URLs short and concise. Having your keywords in your URL is significant. Be mindful of your URLs.

Compressing Images and Code

Compressing images and code improve your website speed. There are things you can do to make your images load a lot faster. If you upload a high-resolution image on your site, of course, it’s going to look amazing. But if image causes your site to load for 10 seconds, nobody’s going to see that image because they’re going to bounce from your website before they even see it.

One of the things you have to get right is creating your images with the correct dimensions. Don’t make your images bigger than they need to be. And the second you need to do is to reduce the quality of the image. The difference between a JPEG at 80% and 100%, it’s not noticeable at web browsers. It’s good to make the resolution a bit lower, so your page loads faster.

Consider the types of files that your images are. Sometimes a PNG will load a bit faster than a JPEG. Many times, JPEGs will load a lot faster than PNGs. And then there are GIFs. There are SVGs for small icons. You can compress all off these image types losslessly.

And there are new image formats such as WebP.

You have to think about which image type is always the fastest to load, the most appropriate for a situation and image type.

Robots.txt

A robots.txt file is something that, if you don’t have right, it’s a terrible thing because the robots.txt file tells the search engines if they should crawl your site or not, and what pages to crawl on your website.

The robots.txt should also link to your sitemap, which has all your pages and blog.

Implementing Correct Sitemaps

The sitemap lists all of the content on your website so Google can easily find everything. Sitemaps also tell Google how regularly each page and post is updated so it can prioritize crawling your site. There’s a great WordPress plugin called Yoast that creates your sitemap for you.

User Experience Analysis

SEO an ongoing process to keep improving. As you dive into SEO, and you sort of master all of the elements, you’re going to have every page 100% optimized for on-page SEO. You’re going to have your website as fast as theoretically possible for the given current state of technology.

Then you need to get inside the mind of your user and ask yourself, “How do I make my website better for my users?”

When you start improving your user experience (UX) you’ll start getting out more leads on your website, and you’ll get more contact fills, you’ll get people seeing the site for longer. UX is essential because Google’s algorithm is well beyond focusing on keywords and website speed. The Google bot can look at your website like a human and be to decide if your website’s better than your competitors from a user experience point of view.

Visit your other search engine competitors’ websites and ask yourself, “Is my website the best?”

Clean Code

Clean coding makes your website go faster because clean code means fewer lines of code to load and fewer errors executing. Google reads your code and can understand code at a DOM level.

Domain Name Age

How old your domain name is a trust signal because it’s an indicator of how long you’ve been in business. If you bought your domain name yesterday, and your competitors have been in business for 15 years, it shows that your competitions are more trustworthy because they’ve been in business longer, all else equal.

Buying your domain name for ten years signals that you plan to be in business for ten years at least, and ten years is the maximum you can buy your business out. It’s little signals like that that show that you plan to be in business for a long time. Google recognizes these small, tiny factors that make a difference.

SSL

SSL is a security certificate on your website that protects the data between the server and the user. Websites with SSL certificates will start with HTTPS in the browser. Having your site secured with an SSL certificate will help you rank better because it shows that you’re more mindful of security.

Length of Content

The length of your content matters. I would now say the minimum as 1500 to 2000 words because anybody Googling a topic, they want to find out everything about the subject. And you’re probably noticing now that the ones that are ranking are trying to give the user everything they’re looking for and so they don’t go back to the search engine for additional information.

Duplicate Content or Thin Content

Thin content that means you have a page or post with too few words (in relative to the code on the page). Duplicate content means content that appears elsewhere on the internet, which can include your website.

Google penalizes duplicate content and thin content. It’s crucial to prune your website to make sure there’s not a lot of content overlap to make sure each piece of content is excellent. It’s better to have pages that give your user everything enough to learn everything about the topic you’re writing about on your post.

Off-Page SEO

One of the significant components of off-page SEO is link building. Link building is having other websites linking back to your site. And that’s very important because its websites trust sending their users to your website. Great content will attract links to your content as a source of authority. The quality of the site linking back to your website matters. Not all links are created equal.

Local SEO Service Pricing

The better local services cost a lot more. The premium Toronto SEO companies will provide more creative problem solving and critical analysis.

A reasonable rate for a freelancer who is quite experienced shouldn’t cost less than $80/hour. To get ranking well on SEO and local SEO, like everything, it takes hard work, and hard work takes time. If you want affordable and have a small budget, I recommend learning SEO yourself if you’re not willing to pay out for those minimum $80/hour rates to get the job done.

Evan White

Evan White

Founder & CEO

Evan is a tech geek that has helped public companies, Fortune 500 enterprises, and SMB clients implement technical solutions to their marketing challenges.

He has a wide range of knowledge of website design and development, search engine optimization, and digital marketing. You'll often find him obsessing about the SEO of a page or the speed of a website. Read more of his blog posts here.

His bookmarks include links to tech blogs, The Economist and Formula 1 news. When not geeking out, you'll find Evan travelling or playing beach volleyball.