Local Search Engine Optimization (SEO) in 10 Simple Steps

Learn the simple steps to take to get your local business to the first page of Google.
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  • Lectures 41
  • Contents Video: 5 hours
  • Skill Level All Levels
  • Languages English
  • Includes Lifetime access
    30 day money back guarantee!
    Available on iOS and Android
    Certificate of Completion
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About This Course

Published 2/2013 English

Course Description

This is my first course published on Udemy and it covers Local Business SEO with a 10-step approach that gives you a crash course in the most important elements of organically ranking your local business on the first page of Google, Yahoo and Bing search engines.

I’ve broken down the fundamentals by steps on a ladder and the higher you climb to closer you will become to seeing the view the top. Search engine optimization is only getting more complicated and this local business SEO course is designed to educate you so that you can intelligently speak and implement strategies that are known to work today and looking into the future.

I do plan on being involved with the students in this course (e.g. answering questions / holding live session) so please feel free to ask any questions. Thanks – Raleigh


Step 1: Business Name, Address & Phone Number (N.A.P)

-Business Names

-Local Addresses

-Local Phone Numbers

Step 2: Claim Social and Brand

-Domains

-Vanity URLs

Step 3: Website & Blog

-Platform & Foundation

-Keywords

-Email List Opt-in.

Step 4: Directory Listings

-Top 20 Listings

-Industry Specific

Step 5: Reviews & Testimonials

-On-Page & Off-Page Reviews

-Schema Mark-up Testimonials

-Review Acquiring Strategy

Step 6: Google+ For Business

-People Behind Brand

-Circles

-Reviews and Google+ Local

Step 7: Links & Citations

-Earning Backlinks

-Buying Backlinks

-Creating Backlinks

-Press Releases

Step 8: Social Media Management

-HootSuite University

-Reputation Management

Step 9: Video Marketing

-Amazon S3 CDM Self-Hosting

-YouTube Optimization

Step 10: Content Marketing

-Content Conception

-Content Production

-Content Optimization

What are the requirements?

  • This course has absolutely no requirement to get started. It is packed with value for those who are either beginners or advanced in this field. Technical aptitude will only help you take away and implement more from the course. We provide thorough instructions on many of the technical items so that anyone should be able to complete any of the tasks we discuss in the lectures. We would hope that you would have some experience with any of the topics discussed, as it is always a better learning experience when you have a frame of reference.

What am I going to get from this course?

  • Provide a solid foundation of understanding about the bigger picture of your business online from a long-term perspective.
  • Further define the individual items that contribute to your businesses success online by having control over and owning as much branded web equity as possible.
  • Give technical strategies that you can begin to implement today that will improve and grow your visibility of your local business online and in search engines.

What is the target audience?

  • College Students
  • Marketing Departments
  • Marketing Professionals
  • Business Owners
  • Web Designers & Developers
  • Marketing Agencies

What you get with this course?

Not for you? No problem.
30 day money back guarantee.

Forever yours.
Lifetime access.

Learn on the go.
Desktop, iOS and Android.

Get rewarded.
Certificate of completion.

Curriculum

Section 1: Introduction
01:18
This video briefly introduces the instructor and course. The following video gives a more detailed overview of the entire course and syllabus.
06:44
This video covers the course outline and is a basic course overview.
Section 2: Business Name, Address & Phone Number (N.A.P.)
00:43

If you want your local business to be found at the top of search engines then the first place to start is by defining your NAP which stands for name, address & phone. These are critical and fundamental elements that you will want to standardize for consistency at the very start of this process. Inconsistencies across the web could hinder you later or cost you time so you will want your NAP to be congruent.

The following lectures will give you the information you need to know about business names, local addresses, and local phone numbers. Pay attention to the details of each and you will thank yourself later when your local business has plentiful clean citations across the web in the later steps. This first step will help form the foundation for success down the road with some of the other strategies in this course.

“Name, address and phone number or NAP is the core or anchor information that makes up a basic online business listing’s identity. Creating, distributing and managing consistent NAP information is essential to increasing the number of citations and improving search platform rankings for Local Search business listings.”  -Localeze

“The acronym for Name, Address and Phone number. The whole of the local ecosystem uses these basic identifiers to keep track of the business listing and identity. Changing them, for whatever reason, risks confusing the many directories and search engines that are tracking the specific business location. It ultimately risks confusing the customer as well.” Blumenthals


03:29
Every business should have an official business name. This is usually built around a brand. Branding is something that the search engines pay attention to whether you know it or not. A business should always select its name based on branding guidelines and not try to force a local modifier or city name into the business name. The requirement for consistency is important above all. That means that a business should settle on a single business name and be consistent with it across all online and offline materials in order to not confuse the search engines.
06:03

The second element to the NAP equation is the business address. The address is slightly more complex in how it can relate to getting your business found online. There are many different types of addresses including residential, commercial, PO Boxes, and virtual addresses to name a few. This lecture will cover the most important technical information regarding standardizing your business address and how to have long-term success with an address location.

03:08
The last element to complete a NAP is the local phone number. As will addresses, phone numbers also come in many forms including landline, cell phone, virtual number and others. These lectures will go over which is right for you and how to eliminate the phone number as a potential problem in getting your business found online.
Section 3: Claim Social & Brand
00:36

The second element to the NAP equation is the business address. The address is slightly more complex in how it can relate to getting your business found online. There are many different types of addresses including residential, commercial, PO Boxes, and virtual addresses to name a few. This lecture will cover the most important technical information regarding standardizing your business address and how to have long-term success with an address location.

04:03
A shared email account is crucial in order to properly create accounts for any business or organization. We suggest gmail for a few good reasons but other web based email services would work as well. If you skip this step what you'll end up with is a bunch of accounts that only you have access to. That puts you in between a rock and a hard place when you are trying to have someone work on those accounts for you. The last thing you want to have to do is give out your personal e-mail to someone who is completing tasks for you. Instead use a shared gmail account that multiple people can have access to without invading your privacy.
10:10

There are a lot of important factors when selecting a domain name for establishing your web equity. A lot of the strategies from the past are no longer relevant as Google gets smarter and the algorithms evolve. This lecture will cover how to select a domain name that is built around brand instead of exact match keywords. Insight on TLDs (.com, .net, .org) as well as domain name length best practices will be outlined. Perhaps most importantly this lecture will cover domain name age and authority and how that plays into web equity and long term return.

04:30
This lecture will describe exactly what a vanity URL is and why it is important for your business online. This entire course is built around owning your web equity and becoming and established authority online in your industry. In order to do this you want to claim as much of brand as possible across the web. Vanity URLs make it easy to grow your following by having a convenient and friendly branded link to display to your audience.
Section 4: Website & Blog
00:51
The third step of the ladder focuses on your website and blog now that you have your NAP social and brand figured out. The way you setup your website and blog will either push you ahead of set you back so there is much to consider when creating your website. This lecture will provide recommendations on your website platform to give you a strong foundation to grow and build your web equity. The lecture will also cover keyword research and the importance of e-mail marketing.
09:28
Here we will be discussing design and development of your website and blog. We will outline the best website CMS platforms and compare them to give a clear picture out the options that are available. There will be a focus put on Wordpress and the tremendous amount of resources and capabilities that platform carries. The concept of growing a database of information and using a website as a funnel for conversion.
14:29
This lecture will cover keywords and why they are important. It will outline some tools for doing keyword research and selection. It is crucial to identify your keywords at this step on the ladder as they will help dictate the much of the steps you take next. Not only should you know what your keywords are but you should also prioritize them based on competition and value of each keyword or keyword phrase.
06:23
This lecture will outline the importance of list building and e-mail opt-in offers on your website. E-mail marketing can be a huge asset to any brand or business and so many websites miss out on this crucial strategy. It can be relatively simple to implement a e-mail marketing strategy and this lecture will illustrate how it can be easily leveraged to promote your business. Integrating e-mail list building strategies does not have to be a lot of work and this lecture will cover how it can be combined with other strategies in the steps ahead.
Section 5: Directory Listings
00:58

No matter what type of business you have, if you have an address then directory listings are critical to your success. This lecture will outline the top directory listings to claim as well as the importance of gaining industry specific directory listings. The importance of directory listings goes deeper than many realize and so the purpose of this lecture is to clearly illustrate why exactly that is the case while giving some strategies to efficiently complete this requirement.

12:29
There are thousands of attainable directory listings for any business out there across the web. So many that you could never get them all. This lecture will show you how to identify the top listings that you should spend the time to go after. The lecture will also cover how to best acquire these listings and what they should contain.
08:35

Depending on what industry your business is you have specific directory listing you need to acquire. Some industries these listings are more obvious and important that others but are very important to not leave out. There are also other opportunities for growing your web equity through these industry specific directories that will be outlined in this lecture as well.

Section 6: Reviews & Testimonials
01:10

On this step we will talk about how a reviews and testimonial strategy is more than just social proof. Today gaining reviews is more critical than ever as consumers make their buying decisions and due diligence online. This step illustrates the necessity of having a reviews strategy in place and how to optimize those efforts to go as far as possible.

04:42
Reviews can be placed on your website or on external satellite web properties. Both are important to have but there are specific methods for going about placing testimonials on your site as well as acquiring them on other websites. This step will describe how reviews and testimonials are a ranking factor especially when it comes to local search and maps.
10:16
This technical step will give you some insight on how you can leverage Schema Mark-up to have search engines better recognize your on-page testimonials and attribute them to your business. There is new HTML code that puts content like testimonials into a format search engine crawlers can digest giving your business ownership of the content on your site, which specifically applies to testimonials.
14:22
Every local business needs a review acquisition strategy. Not only that but also this step will describe how that strategy should be shaped for maximum benefit with the search engines. Looking at where to try to acquire reviews from and how to motivate satisfied consumers to leave you their feedback by making it easy for them to do so.
Section 7: Google+ for Business
01:13
This step outlines how you can embrace Circles to target various audiences. Circles are very powerful for controlling syndication of your content to only those who you want to share it with. Much like your friend circles with your personal relationships, Google+ makes it possible to share online what you want to share with who you want to share it with and nobody else. 
08:28
Since the roll out of Google+ it has become more important for Google to see the people behind the brand. This is tied in with Google Authorship, which will only become more relevant and important in the year ahead and beyond. On this step we will provide guidance on the best practices for taking advantage of this new perspective on social platforms.
20:09

This step outlines how you can embrace Circles to target various audiences. Circles are very powerful for controlling syndication of your content to only those who you want to share it with. Much like your friend circles with your personal relationships, Google+ makes it possible to share online what you want to share with who you want to share it with and nobody else. 

19:27
Although many businesses are slow to adopt Google+ the integration it has with Google Maps it forcing a lot of businesses to pay attention to it. This step will give you insight on how to avoid common frustrations and manage expectations for having success with Google+ local. On this step we will also cover the best practices for how to manage Google+ Local for your brand or business.
Section 8: Links & Citations
01:08

This step goes over the types of backlinks and provides guidance on how to go about each type. There are many different type of links that can point back to your site. It is very important to know how Google looks at each type of link and to know where to focus your link building efforts. Now that you’ve reached this step you are ready to start evaluating your link building strategy.

08:41
This step describes perhaps the best way to do link-building: earning backlinks. These links are acquired by providing authoritative and resourceful content on your website that would motivate someone to link back to you. This method is considered the ‘natural’ and organic way to do link-building putting the focus on the content you create.
13:36

Alternatively this step describes the other end of the link-building spectrum of buying links. This is often considered the risky way of building links as Google mentions in their webmaster guidelines that they will penalize websites that pay for links. That being said there are strategies for buying links that are not as risky as others, which this step will outline.

11:47

Creating backlinks is a way to proactively get links placed that will benefit your web presence. There are many sites out there that allow you to create links that point back at your site at no cost. These are considered ‘low hanging fruit’ that should always be acquired when possible.

12:10
Press releases are a way of getting high quality backlinks on high quality authority websites. There are many different types of press releases including different ways of writing them and syndicating them. This step outlines some strategy for getting press releases done in a way that benefits your web presence.
Section 9: Social Media Management
01:12
Social media has become the new frontier when it comes to growing and maintaining your web presence online. In this step we will outline the importance of embracing social media and give you some tools and resources for effectively and efficiently managing your local business social media platforms.
11:23

Earn a certification that will give you the ability to leverage your time on social media management. This step will show you how to efficiently manage your social media channels with a collaborative approach. We will go over why HootSuite is our recommendation and how you can benefit from using it.

11:17
Reputation management is an emerging industry that is closely related to tradition public relations. This step will go over what it means when you type in your business name in Google. Often times you will want to control what comes up on that first page or search results for your business name and this step will provide insight on how to approach that.
Section 10: Video Marketing
01:11
Video marketing is a area of online marketing that cannot be ignored. Many businesses struggle to produce audio/visual content and in doing so they end up having no video content at all. This step will show you how it doesn’t have to be difficult to produce video content and how to leverage that video content on your own site and YouTube.
12:57
Since Google owns YouTube it might be a good idea to use YouTube to build your online presence. This step identifies how to properly optimize a YouTube video to send it to the top of the search results. We will also talk about how YouTube can contribute to rankings through proper linking.
08:56
This step outlines an advanced video strategy that utilizes new technology like Amazon S3 hosting to drive traffic to your own website instead of YouTube. Many business default to YouTube of vimeo when it comes to hosting their videos but there is a better way that in combination with YouTube can be extremely powerful.
Section 11: Content Marketing
01:13
Content is driving search engine rankings these days and content marketing is an emerging industry that cannot go ignored. Content is at the center building an online presence and creating engaging content efficiently is absolutely necessary to out rank your competitors at the top of Google. This step outlines some methods for creating, producing and optimizing content to drive your website to the top of the search engines.
11:47
This step will provide methods for creating ideas about what kind of content to produce. There are a handful of good strategies for coming up with ideas for new content that will be given. If you struggled at all in the past with coming up with ideas for content for your business this step will make that less of a challenge for you.
13:19

The old fashioned way or writing your own content doesn’t really work when you have to also worry about running your business. There are plenty of great services out there to take advantage of that will allow you to have your content produced for you at high standards. This step will give you a way to significantly cut down the time you spend on content production while still generating quality new content to grow your web equity with.

16:22

Coming up with ideas and producing content is only half the equation; the content must also be optimized for search. There are many small and large ways to optimize content for search engines and this step outlines how to always keep that in mind when publishing content. We will show how it is never too late to optimize content and tweak it to perfection.

Section 12: Conclusion
01:16
Thank you for completing all the lectures in this course. Go out and implement right away if you haven't started already! Also feedback is appreciated as well as any questions you may have. It would also be much appreciated if you could leave a review of the course to help others decide if the course will benefit them. Thanks for listening.

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Instructor Biography

Raleigh Leslie, Web Developer, Graphic Designer, Inbound Marketer

Raleigh has over ten years experience designing & building websites. He co-founded and operated the San Diego based marketing agency PageLadder for three year before returning to independent consulting and freelancing. Raleigh is now one of the hand-selected WordPress expert contractors for Codeable, the #1 WordPress outsourcing service.  Raleigh has been putting focus on growing online equity for various types of local and worldwide businesses and the response has been great.

Raleigh has achieved enduring recognition for his technical knowledge, analysis, and execution skills as a web developer, designer and marketer. He has at the same time earned a reputation as an intense student of what drives ROI through hundreds of real-world applications turning online marketing challenges into opportunities for growth with his ability to be creative and deliver. He has a very effective personal style with his depth of knowledge, his passion, attention to detail, and his enthusiasm for any online marketing project.

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