TLWR: By optimizing your online presence, you can increase visibility, attract targeted traffic, enhance user experience, nurture local customer relationships, and compete effectively against larger competitors within Calgary.
In the vast and apparently ever-evolving digital landscape, small businesses in Calgary face a lot of competition, making it challenging to gain visibility online and attract potential customers. However, with the right strategies in place, local small businesses can rise above all of the noise and connect with their target audience effectively. One such powerful strategy is Search Engine Optimization (SEO). In this blog post, we will delve into the importance of SEO for local small business growth in Calgary, exploring its many benefits and shedding light on why every small business owner should make SEO a top priority.
70% of local mobile searches convert into store visits within 5 miles. If you're not ranking organically for local searches, you're missing out on valuable customers.
- Neil Patel, Digital Marketing Expert and Entrepreneur.
The Power of SEO: Boosting Local Small Business Visibility
Let's face it, small businesses can struggle to be able to reach as many people as larger businesses. Anything that can boost local views of your company is something worth looking into - especially when you can influence who the viewers are. In this section we'll touch on two of the ways local SEO helps you accomplish that.
1) You Will Naturally Get More Website Visitors
When potential customers search for products or services in Calgary, they turn to search engines like Google (or less often, Bing). By implementing effective SEO techniques, businesses can improve their website's ranking/position in search engine results pages (SERPs), ensuring their listing gets displayed more often and potentially clicked upon. Obviously, a high-ranking website on Google or Bing is more likely to be seen and clicked on, ultimately driving more potential customers to their doorstep - therefore the goal should minimally be to reach somewhere on the first page of a search engine result.
2) You Get To Choose Who Finds Your Website
With SEO, small businesses can target specific keywords and phrases that align with their products or services thus driving the kind of website traffic they want most. Choosing the keywords carefully essentially means you're choosing the types of people who will find your website. By optimizing website content for these keywords, businesses increase the chances of appearing in relevant search results. This targeted traffic is more likely to convert into customers, leading to tangible business growth. If a business has products like clothing for the Calgary Stampede they should create individual pages of content for each different style of clothing (i.e. A page about girls' denim short shorts and a separate page about guys' Wrangler jeans) which would help Google or Bing understand what type of traffic it should drive to the site. With SEO, it's up to you to choose your most desired audience.
Local SEO: Making It Easy For Your Customers
It's not the 1990's anymore and everyone has seen their fair share of websites at this point - they're everywhere! But just because there are a lot of them doesn't mean they are quality websites from quality people... or that they are easy to navigate. Leaning into a solid local SEO strategy helps to put you on the right side of these issues. Let's discuss those next two points here.
3) You'll Enhance Your Customer Experience
SEO is not solely about appeasing search engine algorithms; it also focuses on improving the user experience (UX) while they're on your website. By optimizing page load times to be fast (especially for mobile), improving site navigation so people can find what they want easily, and creating relevant and engaging content, businesses can provide a seamless and enjoyable experience for their website visitors. A positive user experience translates into increased customer satisfaction, a higher chance of purchase, repeat business, and even referrals.
4) You Can Build Local Trust and Credibility
Nowadays, consumers rely heavily on online research before making purchasing decisions. These are two common ways local SEO can help in that area:
RANKING: When a small business website ranks high in local Calgary search results, it instills a sense of credibility in potential customers' minds. Naturally, someone would respect a small local company on the first page of Google more than if they scrolled back to page 15 and found a listing for a different company. The attention and time commitment required to organically reach the first page of search results can take years and as a local business that implies the owners care about and believe in what they have to offer.
REVIEWS: Claiming your Google My Business listing is a part of local SEO and helps local businesses build trust and a strong online reputation by showcasing positive reviews, ratings, and testimonials, ultimately influencing customer perceptions and driving them towards choosing your business over competitors.
Small Business SEO: Use it to Your Advantage
When many people think of SEO they imagine it on a very large scale. They think about being in the top position when people search for something like "Fitness Equipment" and become overwhelmed. They think "how could I ever get to the top of that search result across the country and sell nationally?". Luckily, when it comes to small local business SEO in Calgary (or any city) that isn't an issue. This leads us into our final two points.
5) You Can Choose Less Competitive Geo-targeted Local Keywords
For small businesses in Calgary, it's crucial to reach the local audience effectively. SEO allows businesses to target specific geographical locations and optimize their online presence accordingly. By including location-specific keywords and content, businesses can establish themselves as prominent players in the local market, attracting customers in their exact location who are actively seeking their products or services. Instead of having to chase after difficult national (or even Global) keyword rankings like "Blue Jeans"... a local small business in the city could have the advantage of optimizing around "Blue Jeans in Calgary" or even "Blue Jeans for sale in Kensington" as these types of searches wouldn't be competing with the entire world for high rankings or clicks from the SERPs.
6) You Can Level the Playing Field in Calgary
Finally, SEO serves as a powerful equalizer for small businesses, allowing them to compete with larger corporations in Calgary. By focusing on local SEO strategies, small businesses can gain a competitive edge in their specific niche. This means that even with limited marketing budgets, they can still dominate the local search results and outperform their larger counterparts, levelling the playing field and opening up new growth opportunities. Focus on long tail keywords within your local market because they're faster to rank for and the largest companies within Calgary likely don't bother with them. Collect enough high rankings with long tail keywords and search engines will start to rank you higher for shorter tailed keywords since you've "proven" yourself to some degree. Methods like that and others will help you level the playing field in Calgary SEO results.
You Now Understand Why SEO for Small Business in Calgary is Crucial for Growth
Basically, SEO is extremely important for small businesses in Calgary to grow. By using SEO techniques, businesses can become more visible online, attract the right customers, provide a better experience on their website, and compete with bigger companies. It's like a battle in the online world, and SEO is the weapon that small businesses need to level the playing field and succeed. As stated earlier, Neil Patel, notable SEO expert and successful entrepreneur, said, "If you're not ranking organically for local searches, you're missing out on valuable customers". So, if you want your small business to succeed in Calgary, focus on local SEO and watch it level the playing field for you.