Which Business is Likely to Benefit Most From Local SEO Practices?

Which Business is Likely to Benefit Most From Local SEO Practices?

Local SEO practices can significantly benefit businesses aiming to connect with customers in their specific geographic area. By fine-tuning their website and online presence for local searches, they can boost foot traffic, generate more phone calls, and increase conversions from nearby customers. The question that often arises is, Which business is likely to benefit most from local SEO practices?

What is Local SEO?

Local SEO refers to strategies that help your business show up higher in local search engine results. When someone searches for a product or service near a specific location, local SEO helps you rank better for those searches.

Key elements of a local SEO strategy include:

  • Optimizing your website with relevant, geo-targeted keywords (e.g. “Chicago plumber” or “pizza near me“)
  • Ensuring your Google My Business and other directory listings are complete and consistent
  • Building citations and earning reviews on various local directories and review sites
  • Creating location-based pages/blogs targeting different neighborhoods or cities
  • Encouraging customer reviews on Google, Facebook, Yelp and other platforms

Local SEO helps businesses stand out in the critical local pack/map listings that appear at the top of search results. By optimizing properly, your business can appear prominently when customers search for the products or services you offer in your specific geographic area.

While traditional broad SEO remains important, local SEO gives businesses an extra edge in competing for local customers. Local SEO puts you in front of people who live nearby, are actively looking for your offerings, and are primed to become paying customers.

Why Local SEO Matters

Here are some key reasons why local SEO should be a priority:

  • Mobile searches are local – Over 50% of mobile searches have local intent. Local SEO helps you meet this demand.
  • Convenience drives decisions – When searching locally, convenience is a major factor. Appearing at the top of local results makes you the convenient choice.
  • Captures foot traffic – Ranking well for local keywords drives foot traffic to brick-and-mortar establishments from nearby searchers.
  • Builds awareness – Strong local presence builds brand awareness and familiarity in your community.
  • Shows authority – Ranking well for local keywords lends credibility and shows you are the go-to choice in your geography.
  • Drives calls – Appearing prominently for “near me” keywords results in more calls from prospective customers.
  • Provides competitive edge – In competitive spaces, local SEO gives your business an edge over rivals targeting the same area.
  • Allows granular targeting – You can micro-target different neighborhoods, cities and locations based on service area.

Opportunity exists for just about any type of business to benefit from local SEO. But for some industries, optimizing for local searches can provide particularly high returns. Let’s look at which business types can gain the most from targeted local SEO efforts.

Service-Based Businesses See Major Benefits

Service-based businesses with physical locations tend to benefit tremendously from local SEO. This includes businesses like:

  • Plumbers, electricians, HVAC companies
  • Home contractors, landscapers, cleaning services
  • Pest control companies
  • Appliance repair services
  • Locksmiths
  • Handymen

People routinely search for these kinds of home, commercial or emergency services combined with their specific location. Having an address-optimized website and Google My Business page helps service businesses stand out in local searches. Positive online reviews also carry a lot of weight in ranking local service-based companies.

Here are some examples of the types of searches where local service businesses can optimize to capture high-intent users:

  • “Plumber near me”
  • “Emergency AC repair Austin”
  • “Same day appliance repair Chicago”
  • “Tree trimming service Phoenix”
  • “Affordable house cleaning services”
  • “Electrical contractor Tampa”

Service requests and home repairs involve high buyer urgency and intent to purchase. By ranking well for these types of searches in a specific geographic area, service-based businesses can tap into an extremely targeted customer base primed for conversion.

Populating online directories like Google My Business, Yelp and others with complete business details also helps service companies appear for relevant searches. Positive online reviews further enhance credibility for local services to capture searchers’ trust.

For service businesses targeting local consumers, dedicated and consistent local SEO efforts can provide a major competitive advantage. Appearing prominently for localized keywords shows relevance, builds authority, and converts website visitors into paying customers.

Local SEO for Plumbers

One example of a service business that relies heavily on local SEO is plumbers. Often, users searching for “plumber near me” or “emergency plumber San Francisco” need immediate help with urgent plumbing repairs or replacements. By optimizing online profiles and website content for these types of keywords, a plumbing company can get in front of local searchers precisely when they have high intent to hire a plumber quickly.

Providing specific service areas on a website, along with a Google My Business profile with service areas pinned on the map helps plumbing companies geotarget different neighborhoods and cities. Positive reviews also lend credibility when customers are assessing which plumber to call for repairs and installation assistance. This reviews social proof indicates quality, professionalism and timeliness.

With local SEO best practices in place, plumbers can expect to see big results:

  • Increased call volume from customer requests
  • Higher in-person customer conversions for repairs/installations
  • Greater awareness of their brand for local plumbing needs
  • Added trust and credibility from online reviews and prominent local search presence
  • More repeat business and referrals from satisfied local customers

Utilizing local SEO helps plumbers build a reputation in their service areas as being responsive, affordable and able to quickly solve residential and commercial plumbing issues. This can become a significant competitive advantage.

Local SEO for Other Home Services

While the plumbing example covers one home service vertical, local SEO also provides immense value to other specialized trades including:

HVAC Companies

Heating and cooling companies rely heavily on searches like “HVAC installation Raleigh” and “air conditioning repair near me” to connect with homeowners in need. Local SEO generates calls, appointments and conversions.

Electricians

From “emergency electrician” to “whole home generator installation”, optimizing for local searches builds visibility for electricians to win business in their geographic service regions.

Landscapers

Landscaping companies target homeowners seeking local help for services like “lawn installation”, “landscape design San Diego” and “sprinkler repair near me”.

Garage Door Technicians

Specialists who install, repair and replace garage doors focus local SEO on relevant city-specific keywords to capture customer searches.

Carpet Cleaners

Whether it’s routine steam cleaning or emergency flood extraction, carpet cleaning companies rely on local SEO to drive calls from nearby homeowners.

Locksmiths

For time-sensitive needs like “locked keys in car” and “emergency house lockout”, locksmiths use local SEO to be discovered urgently by nearby customers.

Appliance Repair

From refrigerator repair to fixing dishwashers and dryers, appliance service pros want to rank well when local users search for help.

Handymen

For smaller home repairs and installations, handymen optimize locally for maintenance-related tasks like drywall repair, furniture assembly, ceiling fan installation and more.

Pest Control

Exterminators target rodents, ants, bed bugs and other pests with local SEO to generate calls from homeowners seeking removal services.

House Cleaning

Residential cleaning services rely on local SEO to appear when homeowners search for eco-friendly deep cleaning, move-in/move-out cleaning or routinely scheduled house cleaning.

This is just a sample of home service verticals that can derive immense value from comprehensive local SEO strategies. The common theme is using location-based keywords to connect each company with customer needs in the neighborhoods and cities they serve.

For any home-related service, perfecting the local SEO process builds visibility, reputation and consideration when customers have urgent requirements. Appearing prominently and consistently across searches ultimately drives conversions and repeat business. This helps establish home service providers as trusted local go-to sources.

Medical Practices Rely Heavily on Local SEO

Healthcare-related searches very commonly include a location component. When searching for a doctor, dentist or other medical professionals, patients want to find providers close to where they live or work.

Local SEO is extremely important for medical practices looking to attract patients in their geographic service area. Listing the practice address/location prominently and optimizing the website for local keywords helps practices stand out. Many patients also check reviews on sites like ZocDoc or Healthgrades before choosing a provider, making reviews crucial.

Here are some examples of the types of keywords and searches that medical practices should target with local SEO:

  • “Pediatrician near me”
  • “Orthopedic surgeon Detroit”
  • “Dentist accepting new patients Chicago”
  • “Urgent care downtown Austin”
  • “OBGYN Bronx NY”
  • “Psychiatrist Jersey City NJ”

Including keywords for the city, neighborhood, state or region helps medical practices get discovered by searchers in their local service area. Some additional strategies include:

  • Google My Business Listing – Complete and optimize the listing for each practice location with keywords, services, photos, hours, and more. Pin the locations on the map accurately.
  • Reviews – Encourage patients to leave detailed positive reviews on Google, Facebook, Yelp and medical review sites like Healthgrades, RateMDs, and ZocDoc. These build trust and reputation for prospective patients.
  • Link Building – Build inbound links from local directories, chambers of commerce, local sponsorships and partnerships to boost local authority.
  • On-site optimizations – Make sure the website loads quickly, provides all necessary info, and makes it easy to book appointments online.
  • Social media – Engage followers on social networks by sharing helpful localized health content and resources.

Medical practices derive immense benefit from appearing prominently when potential patients search for care locally. Local SEO helps new practices establish themselves as go-to providers of quality care. Even large hospitals and health systems should optimize location pages to stand out from competition and health system websites.

Dentist Example

For example, a local dentist can target very specific keywords for different services and locations like:

This geo-targeted optimization provides visibility in searches for routine dental care, cosmetic services, emergency dental repair, and specialty offerings throughout their service region.

Besides the website, a robust local SEO strategy for a dentist would include:

  • Google My Business profile with service area pinned on the map
  • Strong reviews on Google/Facebook/industry sites like RateMDs
  • Participating in insurance provider local directories
  • Sponsoring local events to gain links from event websites
  • Optimized location pages for satellite offices
  • Active social media pages to engage the local community

This comprehensive strategy allows dentists to build visibility and promote their expertise to prospective patients researching options online. Capturing local searchers ultimately helps drive new patient bookings and grow the dental practice.

Law Firms Need a Local Focus

Those seeking legal counsel or representation are most likely to search for law firms within a reasonable distance from them. Local SEO can help personal injury, divorce, DUI/criminal defense, and other attorneys promote their services to potential clients in their city or county.

Optimizing law firm websites for geo-targeted keywords like “personal injury lawyer San Diego” helps attract searchers. Positive Google reviews also lend credibility to firms. Since competition is often fierce, consistent local SEO efforts give firms an edge.

Here are some examples of the types of localized keywords that law firms should target:

  • “Truck accident lawyer Los Angeles”
  • “Family law attorney Austin”
  • “Employment lawyer near me”
  • “Bankruptcy attorney Newark NJ”
  • “Tax lawyer Buffalo NY”
  • Best divorce lawyer in San Antonio TX
  • “Child custody lawyers in Virginia Beach”

Including the city/region helps law firms geo-target searches to only reach prospects looking for legal representation in those locations. Key strategies include:

  • NAP Optimization – Prominently display business name, address and phone number on website, GMB and directories.
  • Reviews – Testimonials help convey trust to prospective clients. Prioritize gathering reviews on Google and Avvo.
  • Link building – Gain authoritative backlinks from location-specific legal resources and associations.
  • Attorney bios – Include bios optimized with local keywords relevant to each lawyer’s practice areas and experience.
  • Location pages – Create pages with content focused on specific regions if serving a wider geographic area.
  • Legal blog – Publish blog articles with locally-focused legal advice and insights around common legal issues in your jurisdiction.
  • Social media – Engage followers on social networks with a steady stream of geotargeted legal content.

Appearing at the top of Google for localized legal keywords generates phone calls and contact form submissions from prospective clients ready to engage representation. This visibility also establishes credibility and trust in the eyes of potential clients researching options.

Personal Injury Law Firm Example

A personal injury law firm in Miami, for example, can target keywords like:

“Personal injury attorney Miami” “Car accident lawyer Miami FL” “Best workers comp lawyer in Dade County” “Slip and fall attorney Brickell”

This focuses the law firm’s website pages, attorney bios, blog and social media on attracting prospective clients from Miami and the surrounding metro area.

Besides optimizing online assets for keywords, monitoring reviews and integrating local SEO into the broader marketing strategy are also imperative. This holistic approach helps personal injury law firms build their brand, showcase expertise, and consistently gain new local clients.

Restaurants Compete on Local SEO

In the crowded restaurant industry, local SEO is more important than ever. When people search for “Sushi restaurants nearby” or “Mexican food in Chicago”, restaurants need local SEO to appear prominently.

Populating the Google My Business listing with tempting photos and promotions helps drive foot traffic. Encouraging customers to leave positive local reviews on various sites also improves local rankings and reputation. Restaurants rely heavily on local SEO for reservations and online orders.

Here are some examples of high-value searches restaurants should target:

  • “Breakfast near me”
  • “Italian restaurants NYC”
  • “Best seafood in Dallas”
  • “Top 10 steakhouses in Houston”
  • “Mexican food near me open now”

Optimizing for these sorts of keywords helps restaurants get found by hungry searchers looking for a place to eat. Some key optimization components include:

  • Photos – Showcase mouthwatering dishes, ingredients, restaurant interior, happy guests in the Google Business profile and on the website.
  • Menus/Specials – Feature online menus and regular food/drink specials to entice local searchers.
  • Reviews – Actively collect and monitor online reviews on Google, Yelp, Facebook and delivery apps like DoorDash or GrubHub.
  • ** reservation/online ordering integration** – Make it seamless for patrons to book tables or order takeout/delivery online.
  • Local partnerships – Partner with other local businesses, venues, hotels and event spaces to promote the restaurant to locals.
  • Hyperlocal keywords – Target keywords for geographic neighborhoods in addition to citywide keywords.
  • Food blogger outreach – Pitch popular local food bloggers to review and write about dishes.

Restaurants located in dense areas with lots of competition especially benefit from optimizing for all variations of “restaurants near me” and cuisine types. Standing out in local search results brings in more foot traffic, takeout orders and reservations ultimately driving higher revenue.

Pizzeria Local SEO Example

For a pizzeria in Los Angeles targeting families, keywords could include:

  • “Pizza delivery near me”
  • “Best pizza West LA”
  • “Pizzeria Santa Monica”
  • “Kid friendly restaurants Culver City”

This local optimization focuses on attracting families looking for convenient pizza takeout or delivery in the restaurant’s neighborhood.

The pizzeria can promote seasonal specials on the website/Google Business profile to boost orders. Getting customers to opt-in for SMS offers provides another channel for sending time-sensitive promotions.

Monitoring reviews across all platforms and quickly addressing issues preserves the pizzeria’s reputation. This helps cement the restaurant as the trusted local pizzeria for families across LA neighborhoods.

Other Businesses That Benefit

While service businesses, medical, legal, and restaurants benefit greatly from local SEO, other industries can also see positive results. Gyms, salons, retail stores, golf courses, hotels, and automotive shops have also experienced higher conversions and sales from local SEO tactics.

Even large national brands optimize locally to stand out for searches like “Target store near me.” While every business should still focus on broad SEO, local optimization provides that extra edge. For small local players, it can be the difference between thriving or failing.

Here are some other business types that can improve visibility and conversions with specialized local SEO:

Fitness Gyms & Studios

When people search for gyms and fitness classes in their area, local SEO helps gyms stand out nearby prospects ready to get in shape. Targeting searches like:

“Yoga studio Austin” “Barre classes near me” “CrossFit Gym Seattle” “Bikram hot yoga Los Angeles” Drives sign-ups for gym memberships and class packages. Fitness businesses rely heavily on local SEO as the decision to choose a gym usually factors convenience and proximity.

Hair & Beauty Salons

Beauty services like hair, nails, skincare and waxing are very locally driven. When searching for “eyebrow threading near me” or “best hair salon Denver,” beauty businesses need to appear prominently to be top of mind. Targeting localized beauty keywords helps salons attract new clients in their city. Strong local SEO also builds awareness for higher-end salons offering specialties like balayage, keratin treatments, Brazilian blowouts, and eyelash extensions. For beauty businesses, standing out locally drives bookings and repeat visits.

Hotels & Hospitality

People traveling to a new city often search for “hotels near me” or “best hotels in Chicago”. Local SEO allows hotels and hospitality businesses to appear when tourists search for accommodations in their destination.

Optimizing location pages on hotel websites helps attract inbound travelers planning trips. Targeting keywords for nearby landmarks, attractions, convention centers and airports also helps.

Encouraging reviews is enormously impactful as travelers heavily factor previous guest feedback into hotel booking decisions. Strong local SEO ultimately helps hospitality businesses fill more rooms.

Automotive Shops

The auto industry is ripe for localization. When cars need maintenance or repairs, owners search for “transmission specialist near me” or “best car inspection Seattle”. Local SEO allows shops to capture these high-intent searches.

Specialty auto shops that offer services like window tinting, upholstery, auto detailing and audio installations also rely on hyper-local keywords to attract customers. Auto businesses should ensure their Google Business and other directory listings accurately promote all service offerings.

Pet Care

Pet owners love convenience when it comes to caring for their furry family members. Local SEO helps pet care businesses appear when customers search “dog boarding near me”, “pet grooming Seattle” or “mobile vet Los Angeles.”

Whether it’s general veterinary practices, mobile veterinarians, trainers, groomers or specialty pet stores, optimizing locally pays dividends for pet businesses. Strong SEO helps them stand apart in crowded service areas when pet owners need care and products nearby.

Professional & B2B Services

Even business-to-business companies and professional service firms benefit from optimizing for localized keywords that target other businesses and partners.

Accountants, marketing agencies, HR consultants, IT/telecom companies, janitorial services, landscapers, caterers and other B2B providers optimize websites and listings to rank for keywords like:

“Commercial landscaping Miami” “IT support services for small businesses” “Cloud computing consultants NYC” “Corporate event catering in Houston”

This attracts business searchers seeking partners and service providers in their regions. For consultancies and agencies especially, appearing locally instills confidence in expertise regarding the specific geographic market.

Local SEO establishes authority and creates opportunities to sell services to other organizations in their backyard. Location pages on websites, Google Business listings for all branch offices, and positive corporate reviews build trust and visibility.

For any entity selling to other companies, establishing local search visibility makes it convenient for businesses to find and engage their services.

Local SEO Generates Big Returns for SMBs

As we’ve seen, localized SEO delivers tremendous value across many verticals. But for small and medium-sized businesses especially, optimizing for local searches can provide one of the highest ROIs from any digital marketing channel.

Appearing at the top of local pack listings for keywords targeting nearby searchers provides SMBs visibility with hyper-relevant prospects ready to buy. Even if the broader SEO strategy needs improvement, focusing on local optimization gives SMBs an immediate avenue to drive calls, leads, sales and revenue.

While large enterprises also optimize locally, small businesses generally rely more heavily on local search visibility. Large brands benefit from widespread brand recognition and dominating broad keywords nationally. Smaller businesses need to over-index on winning local searches to carve out market share in specific geographies.

For small companies competing locally, failing to appear in local search results can be catastrophic. But harnessing local SEO and content marketing gives SMBs an opportunity to level the playing field, reinforce their expertise, and build a loyal customer base.

Users perceive companies ranking highly locally as the most trusted options in their area. This brings authority and preference that keeps customers coming back and fuels referrals. Local SEO success today can become a competitive moat that provides SMBs sustainable growth for the long haul.

The Bottom Line

Any business with a physical location should be tapping into local SEO for extra visibility and sales in their geographic area. But service-based businesses with hyperlocal demand and plenty of competition generally benefit the most from robust local SEO strategies.

By appearing prominently for local searches and building a strong localized online presence, businesses can connect with customers right in their neighborhood. This allows companies to build credibility and familiarity in their community, leading to repeat business and positive word-of-mouth referrals.

An effective local SEO strategy helps create local brand advocates who vouch for your business to friends, family, and other potential customers in your area. The end result is higher visibility, consideration, and conversions from the people that matter most – those nearby who are actively looking for the products and services you offer in their city or town.

Local SEO gives businesses an invaluable opportunity to match their offerings with the intent of nearby searchers. Capturing this ultra-targeted audience ensures marketing spend goes further. Every niche can develop specialized local SEO strategies tailored to their service regions, clientele and specific business goals using the guidelines provided.

Improving local search visibility leads to a virtuous cycle of elevated authority, increased sales and customer loyalty over the long-term. Local SEO success compounding creates a sustainable competitive advantage relative to rivals.

For the greatest returns on investment, partnering with a qualified local SEO agency provides websites the expertise needed to build effective local optimization. Specialists take care of technical optimizations, content development, review generation, citations and link building so companies focus on higher priorities.

Does your business need visibility with local searchers? Contact our industry-leading team today to start capturing local customers searching for exactly what you offer in your backyard.

Conclusion

For any business looking to increase visibility and sales in their geographic region, developing a robust local SEO strategy should be a top priority. As we’ve discussed, certain business types like service companies, medical practices, law firms and restaurants derive immense value from targeted localization. But the principles apply broadly across industries.

Optimizing your digital presence for local keyword searches builds visibility with high-intent customers actively looking for your products and services in your area. Appearing prominently in local SERP features like the Local Pack maps and listings leads to more calls, walk-ins, and conversions over time.

With increasingly fragmented media consumption, local SEO represents one of the best ways to reach nearby prospects. Mobile has accelerated this trend, with over half of all searches now having local intent. Success requires identifying where your ideal customers are searching and optimizing to meet their needs.

The strategies outlined in this guide provide an overview of how to build an effective local SEO campaign leveraging:

  • Keyword research to uncover geo-targeted search demand
  • Optimized Google My Business listings with complete info
  • Positive local reviews across directories and platforms
  • Local link building from relevant sites in your industry
  • Location-specific website optimization and content
  • Monitoring analytics for indicators of local SEO progress

Consistency and dedication to improving local search visibility leads to compounding returns as your brand awareness, authority and customer loyalty grows in your geographic region.

Local SEO success not only leads to an immediate uptick in customers and revenue, but also lasting competitive differentiation. By commanding the local SERPs, you build defensible market dominance and long-term growth potential.

If you need help developing your localized SEO strategy or executing link building, content creation, technical site optimizations or review generation, our local search experts are ready to help take your local presence to the next level.

Contact us today to start capturing the innumerable customers searching for your business in your backyard. Our team will help you convert online visibility into real-world sales and traffic at your physical locations.

FAQs

Which business benefits most from local SEO?

Service-based businesses with a physical location tend to benefit the most from local SEO. Examples include plumbers, contractors, electricians, HVAC companies, appliance repair shops, dentists, and restaurants. These businesses rely heavily on localized search traffic to connect with customers in their area. Local SEO helps drive calls, walk-ins, and conversions.

Who can benefit from local SEO?

Almost any business with a physical location can benefit from local SEO to some degree. Medical practices, law firms, salons, gyms, hotels, automotive shops, pet care providers, professional services, and retail stores can all improve visibility and conversions locally through SEO. Optimizing for local searches builds visibility with nearby customers looking for specific products and services in their city or neighborhood.

Who benefits most from SEO?

Overall, small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) with limited brand recognition tend to benefit the most from SEO. By optimizing for relevant keywords in their niche, SMBs can level the playing field against bigger rivals and get discovered locally. Large enterprises have the benefits of widespread name recognition, resources, and existing authority to dominate broad keywords. SMBs rely more on niche and long-tail keywords through strong SEO.

What type of businesses need SEO?

Virtually every type of business needs SEO to some extent to improve their visibility and attract ideal customers online. But SEO is especially crucial for businesses that rely heavily on online search traffic, such as service companies, ecommerce retailers, professional services, medical practices, and local consumer-facing businesses. Any business selling products or services that people search for online requires SEO to capture interest and drive conversions.

Who benefits from local SEO and why?

Local brick-and-mortar businesses benefit greatly from local SEO because it helps attract customers near their physical location while also building local authority and reputation. Service businesses like plumbers, contractors, dentists, and restaurants gain a competitive edge by appearing prominently in local search results and map listings. Local SEO generates calls, walk-ins, repeat visits, referrals, and conversions from nearby searchers.

What types of businesses benefit from local marketing?

Service-based businesses, retail stores, medical practices, legal services, restaurants, salons, pet care, fitness, automotive, and professional services gain significant value from comprehensive local marketing. Combining SEO with locally-targeted paid ads, social media, reviews, partnerships, and outreach helps businesses build visibility, authority, and conversions within their geographic service area.

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