Google is still the king of the search engines driving 90% of all online traffic to websites. If your website is ranking well on Google, your website is probably ranking fairly well on the other search engines too. Google’s reach, combined with the increasing number of people using the internet to find products and services, make it essential for your local business to be listed on the first page of the local search results.

Today, search engines can do more for your business than any other form of advertising. Consumers are reaching for their phones, tablets and computers to find local products and services, get directions, read reviews and to make price comparisons. To be found by these potential consumers, your business needs to be listed in the first few local listings and on maps. So how is this possible? The goal of the search engines is to provide the user with the most relevant options to their search query. You must demonstrate to the search engines, especially Google, that your website is the most relevant and provides the best source of information; basically the best choice for the individual searching for your products and services.

There are several factors that search engines look for when deciding what website is the most relevant for a particular search term. To start with, they look for websites that are well-designed, easy to navigate, understand and use. Your website should be accessible by all modern browsers and load error-free on all devices, especially mobile. Your website should contain original, high quality content that informs, directs and allows the consumer to take action.

There are many local directories that consumers rely on to find local businesses. It is important that you find, verify and keep your business’ online listings accurate and optimized for potential customers and mapping systems. You need to provide easy access to your information and your business location, this helps the consumers and thus will help increase your ranking in the search engines.

Other signals or factors considered by the search engines are how engaging your website is compared to your competition. They look at how long a searcher stays on your website, how many other websites link to your information and how often you update your content. Weekly blog posts, topic specific comments on social media and positive customer reviews are some of the ways to demonstrate your website offers fresh content, is socially engaging and popular.

So how important is it that your website ranks locally? Take a look at the video below to gain insight on some local search statistics.