Local search in 2024: Key trends

The digital marketing landscape is rapidly evolving, and for location-based businesses aiming to stay ahead, understanding and integrating cutting-edge tools like Local View into their strategy is imperative. As we advance into 2024, businesses are faced with a marketplace where local SEO transcends mere listings management; it’s about crafting genuine experiences, fostering engagement, and driving conversions. Let’s delve into how Local View is setting the stage for this transformation.

1. Discovery

To boost visibility in brand and location-based searches, focus on:

– Creating detailed Google Business Profile listings and engaging with niche authoritative platforms.

– Implementing the correct schema structure on your site.

– Sharing engaging, timely content, including local events, rates, and operational details.

Key strategies for discovery include:

– Enhancing landing pages with diverse elements such as high-quality images, detailed information, and interactive content.

– Ensure images are authentic, optimized for search standards, and reflect user intent.

– Streamline your digital assets by centralizing image usage, improving images through Google’s NLP, and making them easily discoverable with the right tagging.

These steps will improve your online presence, making it more discoverable and relevant to both search engines and potential customers.

To future-proof for visually-focused search engine results pages (SERPs) in 2024, consider:

– Analyze customer search data to understand their needs better, using AI technologies like Google’s AI in maps to interpret and respond to conversational queries with personalized recommendations.

– Produce content rich in topics and entities relevant to your audience, continually update your offerings, and ensure technical SEO is robust for optimal search engine crawling and indexing.

– Emphasize visual content optimization, as recommended by experts like Greg Sterling. Utilize AI to understand and showcase multimedia, making your content more comprehensive.

2. Relevancy and Authority

Google’s updates aim at promoting content that provides valuable expert insights. To create impactful content, analyze your and your competitors’ content gaps, understand consumer expectations, and ensure your location pages are comprehensive. Personalization and localization of content cater to specific audience segments, improving engagement. Using AI can scale your content creation, but genuine, helpful content is key to building relevance and authority. Reviews significantly contribute to your brand’s perceived authority and are critical for local rankings.

Robust Content Strategy for Enhanced Relevancy:

  • Identify content gaps and consumer expectations to tailor content effectively.
  • Ensure location pages offer comprehensive information beyond basics like contact details.
  • Personalize content based on audience segments such as demographics and preferences.
  • Utilize location-specific content like posts and events to drive engagement.
  • Employ AI tools judiciously, with human oversight to maintain authenticity.

Building Authority through Robust Reviews:

  • Quality website and reviews on platforms like Google Business Profile are crucial in 2024.
  • Customer interactions contribute to credibility and influence search rankings.
  • Solicit reviews consistently, as review recency directly impacts rankings.
  • Prioritize engagement to enhance online visibility and credibility.
  • Google rewards businesses with frequent searches and clicks, emphasizing the importance of an active online presence.

3. User Experience

Delivering a cohesive experience across all platforms with consistent brand information is crucial, especially for businesses with multiple locations. Effective site architecture ensures information is readily available and tailored to local needs, incorporating elements like FAQs, videos, and events to meet local demands. Personalizing experiences based on user data, location, and past interactions increases engagement and conversion potential. Technical SEO ensures your content is crawlable and ranks well, with strategies including improving page experience, correctly configuring multi-language sites, and utilizing content delivery networks for efficient content distribution.

– Information Consistency: Ensure uniform presentation of your brand’s details, particularly location data, across all platforms. A single, authoritative data source should be the foundation for all your brand information, from your main website to directories and beyond, to maintain accuracy and prevent discrepancies, especially with the emergence of AI in search.

– Effective Site Architecture: Design your website in a way that makes each location’s information easily accessible, ensuring it’s current, engaging, and includes local specifics. Well-planned site architecture is key to optimizing for search engine crawling and indexing.

– Localized Experience: Adapt your location pages to meet local needs with content like FAQs, videos, and events in multiple languages, showcasing local expertise and relevance. Personalize based on location, search intent, and previous interactions to make every visitor feel the content is specifically tailored for them, enhancing engagement and conversion potential.

– Online Performance Factors: Include the physical location, backlinks, and a well-maintained Google Business Profile as essential elements for boosting local search performance. Incorporate genuine reviews and regular content updates, like posts and videos, to enrich your profile.

– Technical SEO: Ensure your content is fully crawlable and indexed by addressing technical SEO essentials. This includes passing Core Web Vitals, configuring sites for multiple locations and languages correctly, using content delivery networks for efficient delivery, and applying advanced schema markup. Aim to consolidate information under the main domain when possible to maintain consistency across all brand touchpoints.

By focusing on these core aspects, businesses can create a truly personalized and connected customer experience, capable of meeting users’ specific needs and preferences while optimizing for the best possible search engine visibility.

4. Engagement

Engaging your audience effectively influences how search engines view your site’s relevance to users’ needs. Diversifying engagement channels, like leveraging platforms popular with younger demographics, enhancing content with videos, and fostering a strong online community via influencers and social media, boosts engagement metrics.

5. Conversion

The ultimate marketing goal is to convert engagement into measurable actions. Strategies include integrating paid marketing efforts with organic strategies for a unified approach to target audience segmentation and personalization, optimizing both paid and organic efforts for better reach and ROI, and relying on business intelligence and analytics to unify data sources for comprehensive performance insights, ensuring marketing strategies are data-driven and effective.

Paid Advertising: Enhance your local marketing conversions by integrating your organic efforts with targeted paid advertising. Leveraging AI for both organic and paid search emphasizes the necessity of optimizing your website’s content and structure to boost quality scores.

Audience Targeting and Customization: Implement audience segmentation and use targeted advertising to connect with specific customer profiles. Offering personalized experiences on your website can attract high-quality traffic that is more likely to engage and convert.

Integrated Marketing Strategies: Avoid isolating your marketing teams; instead, foster collaboration between your paid and organic strategies. This integrated approach, known as co-optimization, enables you to target high-value audiences accessible through organic means while efficiently allocating your paid advertising budget for better return on investment (ROI).

Data Analysis and Integration: Overcoming the challenge of fragmented data across various platforms and systems is crucial for comprehensive marketing performance analysis. Establishing a unified data repository ensures consistency in performance tracking and analysis, laying the groundwork for informed decision-making across all marketing channels.

6. Rethinking KPIs and Metrics for a New Era

As we venture deeper into the era of AI and technological advancements, traditional metrics to gauge local SEO success are giving way to more nuanced and comprehensive KPIs. Local View’s analytics capabilities offer businesses insights beyond the surface level, enabling a clearer understanding of their digital ecosystem’s health and trajectory.

Traditional SEO metrics are becoming less relevant due to evolving search experiences.

Organic listings will be pushed down by more engaging content like images, posts, and reviews.

Google properties like SGE, People Also Ask, and local listings will dominate SERP real estate.

Saturating these platforms is crucial for brand visibility. Click-through rates may decrease as more content is delivered directly in search results.

Adopting New Metrics:

  • Top of the funnel metrics include rich results and impressions.
  • Middle of the funnel metrics encompass phone calls, driving directions, appointments, messaging, reviews, and clicks.
  • Bottom of the funnel metrics focus on time on site, conversions, bookings, and transactions.

Shifting Focus to Integrated Strategies:

  • Local strategies should cover all audience touchpoints and optimize for discovery, relevancy, experience, engagement, and conversions.
  • Centralizing information and data is crucial for multi-location brands to ensure consistency, deliver personalized experiences, and track performance effectively.

7. Leveraging Local View: A Strategic Imperative for 2024

As search behaviors and technologies continue to evolve, Local View presents itself as an indispensable partner for businesses aiming to excel in the local SEO arena. Its suite of features and tools are not just about keeping pace with changes but about setting the pace, driving meaningful engagements, and delivering unparalleled experiences.

With a vision firmly set on the future, Local View equips businesses with the capability, data, and insights to thrive in the increasingly competitive digital marketplace. In 2024, leveraging Local View isn’t just a strategy; it’s a strategic imperative for success in local SEO.