In the era of mobile-first, local SEO is something you can longer afford to ignore. Whether you have a physical presence or you operate entirely online, local listings have become an integral part of Search Engine Optimisation.

Every single day, potential customers are seeking businesses in their area – restaurants, shops, salons, furniture repair companies, recruitment agencies, and countless other products and services. Making use of local SEO allows you to be found more easily during these searches, without customers having to scroll through the SERPs. With that said, local listings can be a challenge if you make mistakes along the way.

Avoid These Local SEO Mistakes

Some of the biggest mistakes that can ruin your local SEO results include the following:

Mistake 1: Duplicated Google My Business profile

This is easily one of the most commonly-made mistakes. Not having a profile at all is another, closely related mistake. The biggest problem with duplicate Google My Business profiles is that Google penalises duplicate content in any form.

The next biggest problem is that duplicate profiles will confuse potential customers very quickly. If you have one profile that looks very similar to the other profile, with one or two details missing or changed, how will customers know which is the correct profile? Few will bother making the effort to find out and instead they will move on in their search.

Mistake 2: Incomplete or missing NAP listing

Another common mistake is getting your NAP listing wrong. Just as you need to be sure that all information is correct in your Google My Business profile, you also need to be extra careful to avoid errors in your NAP listing.

This could include a company name that is spelt wrong or written differently to the way it is written on your website (skipping Inc if you are incorporated, for example), an address that is incomplete or written incorrectly (or one that includes spelling errors), and a phone number that is missing a digit or an area code. Skipping your NAP listing altogether is an equally big mistake.

Mistake 3: Using the wrong keywords

Using the wrong keywords or adding keywords to your company name in your NAP listing or Google My Business profile is also a common mistake. Keywords are important in many areas of SEO. Although they can be used for local search, they should always be done carefully. Simply adding them to your business name will end up getting your site penalised instead of getting your higher in searches.

Getting More From Local SEO

Once you begin to update and refine your profile and listing, you can keep it updated by changing your post (adding sales, promotions, events, and other key information you want to highlight), adding images, answering questions, and editing your description as needed. This will help you continue to get the benefit of local SEO, year after year.

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