The Complete SEO Guide to Ranking Local Business Websites

Watch over my shoulder as I redesign and rank a real live client local business website on the 1st page of Google
4.7 (425 ratings) Instead of using a simple lifetime average, Udemy calculates a
course's star rating by considering a number of different factors
such as the number of ratings, the age of ratings, and the
likelihood of fraudulent ratings.
3,582 students enrolled Bestselling in WordPress Business
$19
$200
90% off
Take This Course
  • Lectures 121
  • Length 7 hours
  • Skill Level All Levels
  • Languages English, captions
  • Includes Lifetime access
    30 day money back guarantee!
    Available on iOS and Android
    Certificate of Completion
Wishlisted Wishlist

How taking a course works

Discover

Find online courses made by experts from around the world.

Learn

Take your courses with you and learn anywhere, anytime.

Master

Learn and practice real-world skills and achieve your goals.

About This Course

Published 12/2015 English Closed captions available

Course Description

  • Course completed updated for 2016-2017
  • Top Local SEO course on Udemy
  • Instructor available inside for questions

____________________________________________________________________

"Christine guides you very well thru this course. She breaks it down in sections for you so you never feel lost. The over the shoulder example from beginning to end helped me tremendously as I am mostly a visual person and like to see examples." - Luis Palacios

____________________________________________________________________

If you've been wanting to rank local business websites so you can provide local SEO services to clients, you're in the right place.

In this course I take you along so you can watch me rank a real live local business website both organically on the first page of Google and in the Google local pack.

Here you will watch as I make changes to the client's website so you will know not only the exact steps you need to take but why you should take them. We'll start by covering:

  • The exact information you should be collecting from local clients
  • The exact spreadsheet I use to track my work
  • How to maintain current rankings through a redesign process
  • How to monitor your site after a re-design
  • Checking the site's SEO health to improve rankings

After getting organized and gaining a better understanding of the website's health we'll begin the SEO process by:

  • Researching the best keywords to target
  • How to find your top competitors and see what you need to do to outrank them
  • How to set-up a demo site during the re-design process
  • How to keep Google from indexing your demo site
  • Building local pages and where to put keywords for maximum benefit

____________________________________________________________________

"Christine has put this course together logically, in a way that you can understand, and makes you feel like you're doing things the right way. I cannot say enough about the course. This is my 3rd SEO course, it's the first that I will finish." - P. Compton

____________________________________________________________________

Next we'll get into even more crucial SEO steps. We'll start off with on-page optimization which includes:

  • Several step-by-step methods for using images to improve rankings
  • Why you should be using schema, what it is and exactly how to implement it
  • How to have a fast loading website
  • How to inform Google of a newly designed website or new pages

Finally we'll look at off-site optimization which will take our SEO efforts to the next level. In these sections we'll look at:

  • The step-by-step process for ranking websites in the Google local pack
  • Why, how and where to build local citations for maximum benefit
  • How to increase local business reviews
  • The exact companies you can use to outsource local pack rankings
  • Where to find the best back link opportunities for local business websites

There are several resources for you to download and use and lots of bonus tips and tricks you can use as well.

There has never been a better time to start providing local SEO services to increase your income. If you're new to ranking local business websites, you'll be fully prepared to provide local SEO services by the end of this course.

Increase your monthly recurring income by providing local SEO services. Enroll now and I'll help you through the process.

What are the requirements?

  • No previous SEO knowledge or experience is required.
  • Basic HTML knowledge is helpful but also not required.

What am I going to get from this course?

  • Rank a local business website on the first page of Google
  • Understand the entire local SEO process from start to finish
  • Identify the best, most profitable keywords for local businesses
  • Properly optimize a local website for maximum SEO benefit
  • Find and obtain high quality back links and specific local business back link opportunities
  • Build quality citations for fast ranking in the Google local pack

What is the target audience?

  • Anyone interested in providing local SEO services to clients
  • Local business owners who want to rank their website on the first page of Google

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 to Ranking a Local Business Website
02:36

If you've ever wanted to learn how to rank local business websites on the first page of Google, this is where you'll learn everything you need to know. In this course, you can watch me every step of the way as I rank a local business website on the first page of Google (both organically and in the Google local pack).

You're welcome to work alongside me on a website you're working on and begin applying the strategies we cover in this course. You'll also find me inside answering questions and providing feedback should you have questions or get stuck.

Article

After you complete this course you will have a vast knowledge of local SEO and how to rank local websites. It's great to continue learning more about SEO as you begin applying what you've learned and as the SEO world changes.

If you'd like to continue learning and to have another place to ask SEO related questions, come join me in the SEO Facebook Group 'SEO Tips & Tricks' where I frequently share SEO related information. You can join me here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/seotipsgroup/

Section 2: Planning & Getting Prepared
00:34

Before you get started, it's very important to take just a little bit of extra time to get yourself organized. Believe me, you'll thank yourself as you go through the process because spending the time know will save you hours later as you go through the work. Now how you choose to organize this information is up to you but I like to keep all the data within one easy, well-organized spreadsheet. In this section, I'll share the exact spreadsheet I use and I'll also share what information I collect and track as I go.

07:09

Let's take a closer look at the local SEO spreadsheet we'll be using and the information we need to collect to get started.

8 pages

Download and use this spreadsheet to track all of the local SEO work you do for a website. With this spreadsheet you can track: the business information, questions to ask the client, your keywords, citations and back links as well as an on-page optimization checklist and a competition analysis sheet.

11:10

In this course you can watch as we rank a real, local business website. Here we'll take a look at the business, it's current website and SEO status. Taking a closer look at the business in the beginning can give us a good general overview of what we're working with. Here I'll show you what I look for.

02:15

I like to ask clients what they wish their website could do for them so I can better understand their goals. In the end, this goal typically comes down to sales and making more money. They could be looking for more product sales, more clients, more visitors clicking on ads, more leads, more sign-ups and so on.

To have an effective website you need to know who the website is designed for in the first place.

This is important to figure out before redesigning a website but even if you won't be redesigning the site, you don't want to work really hard to drive new traffic to a website only to see it not convert.

This step will help make sure the website is set-up to convert and ready for you to begin the SEO process.

09:28

The top search engines actually give us the tools (for free!) that we need to see exactly what they see. They will let us know if they find any errors that can prevent us from ranking and these tools also allow us to provide the search engines with valuable information about our website.

Setting up these free accounts only takes a few minutes and can help immensly.

10:49

We all know about Google's algorithm but what factors are most important for ranking a local business website? With hundreds of ranking factors lets take a closer look at how to know which factors are the most important to start with.

We'll also take a look at how to help repair a website that is not performing well and which factors are the most likely to cause poor rankings.

Section 3: Seo Audit & Keeping Current Rankings During Redesign
00:55

If you'll be redesigning a current website or you'll be making a lot of content changes to a site, you'll want to make sure that don't unintentionally lose a website's current ranking status and traffic by making these changes.

The good news is there are certain preventative measures you can take to protect any previous SEO work and rankings and that's exactly what we're going to explore in this section.

14:19

If you'll be redesigning your website or creating a new URL structure, it's very important to do this strategically so you don't unintentionally lose any of the website's current rankings. Here we'll take a look at exactly what to take into consideration when relaunching a website.

If you're redesigning a website, using a new content management system or rewriting the site's URLs, you don't want to miss this.

04:47

Here we build off of the previous lecture and we continue looking at additional factors for maintaining current website rankings that are important to consider in a redesign process.

11:21

Now we'll look at the biggest step that is going to have the biggest impact on maintaining your rankings. You'll know when to take this step and how to implement it if necessary.

03:02

You can expect your traffic to fluctuate a bit after a redesign. It happens to everyone so don't panic, just monitor to make sure everything is happening as it's supposed to. Following the steps outlined here will help you to maintain your rankings and if your redesign is good, then you should even experience an increase in traffic.

1 page

Download this checklist and keep in handy when you are redesigning a website to make sure you keep SEO in mind and maintain the website's current rankings after the redesign process.

Section 4: Keeping An Eye On Your Competitors & Analyzing Their SEO Efforts
00:24

Before we dive into the SEO process we want to take a step back and find out who our competitors are. After all, if we don't know who our competitors are and what they are up to, how will we know what to do to outrank them? In this section watch as I find my client's top competitors and see the tools I use to know what they are doing SEO wise.

10:49

In local SEO it's very important to know exactly who your competitors. This information will tell you just how hard you'll need to work to outrank them and will even help guide your SEO plan. Watch as I find out who my top competitors are.

We'll look at how you can discover your top competitors for free and what tools you can also you if you'd like.

Article

Here is a list of some excellent competition tools (both free and premium) including the ones I use in my business plus some more you may like.

Section 5: Keyword Research & Competition
00:39

It's a pretty straightforward process for finding keywords that will drive traffic to a local website but that doesn't necessarily mean those are the best keywords for you to go after. We want the right traffic , qualified traffic that is going to convert.

There isn't an all-in-one local SEO keyword research tool so we'll look at a handful of options that can give you some good data to go off of and help you to make your final selection.
02:31

I like to break the keyword research process up into 5 main steps. While keyword research can be time consuming, it's not hard to do but it can really make or break your SEO campaign. Here we'll look at the exact steps you should take to find the best keywords for the local business you're working with.

18:44

There are several good techniques for finding great keywords to go after. Here I'll use these techniques to generate a long list of keywords plus look for signs of keywords worth going after. I'll show you the tools that I use to find these keywords as well.

03:08

Spending a few extra minutes to take a look at our competitors can give us some great ideas for new keywords, show us what keywords are most important to our competitors and what they are trying to rank for. Let's look at how to gather this valuable information.

03:35

A common mistake is when doing keyword research is to select a keyword solely based on the traffic volume even if this isn't the most targeted keyword. When you are selecting your final keywords, there are a few things you want to look for and we'll explore exactly that in this lecture.As I mentioned earlier on, we don't want to just drive any old traffic to the website. While that looks great on your analytics report, that doesn't always look as great on the revenue report.

10:09

Now that you have a great list of keywords, we need to take the keyword research process one step further and find out if these keywords will actually produce great results for us. Here we'll explore which tools we can use to find out how hard it will be to rank for specific keywords.

Section 6: Developing Website Content
00:39

The content a website has is very important to it's overall ranking. You need to use quality content to give your website's an overall boost. But it can be hard to know what content to actually start with.

In this section we'll explore what content you should be including on your website, and where to get some ideas if you get stuck. I'm also going to have you join me as I develop an internal linking structure for the site and create my first site pages while setting them up correctly using my newly selected keywords.
07:08

Content plays an important role in SEO today so in this section we'll discuss creating a content development plan that the business can stick to and what content you should include on the website.

06:07

Figuring out what content to add to the website can be hard. Here we explore some good content options for local businesses.

04:16

An internal link structure can help pass link juice throughout your website. This can be done very easily and is helpful for SEO and for site visitors.

Section 7: Website Design & Development Plan
00:26

Whether you're creating a new site or redesigning an existing one, you can create a great looking website while starting to optimize the website at the same time. In this section, we'll look at how to set-up a demo site and how to begin setting up the new site pages while integrating your newly selected keywords.

04:30

If you are about to put all this work into ranking a website, first ask yourself if the website is really worthy of a first page ranking. If the site looks like it was built in 1997, you might struggle to get there a bit. You've taken the opportunity to look at your competition so you know what is ranking in the top spots. Use this information and make a better looking and more informative site. Let's look at where else we can go for some design inspiration whether we are redesigning the website entirely or will just be making a few changes to better convert visitors once they land on the website.

03:38

When you're designing or redesigning a website you have several options. Here we'll take a look at the options you have and I'll discuss what I'll be doing for the website I am working on.

02:20

When designing (or redesigning) a client website, it's a good idea to set-up a demo site where the client can see your progress and provide feedback as you work. This is also where you can host the website until the client makes the payment for the website before you transfer it to their server.

02:09

You want to make sure that Google doesn't index your demo website while you're working on it especially as the demo site is not where the website will be housed in the future. Let's take a look at a couple of options for asking search engines not to index the site.

07:44

Having location specific pages and location specific information on the website is very important. Here we'll discuss exactly what location information should be included and you can watch as I create the specific website pages so you can see what your final pages could look like.

07:19

You have your keywords but where do you put them on the website? What pages do you need? And what URL should you use? We'll explore all of that here using the real business website as an example.

Section 8: On Page Optimization
03:03

Now let's take a closer look at the steps we need to take to rank a local business website. On page optimization is a very important step and here we'll look at exactly what we to do to optimize the website.

04:10

This quick and easy trick is a great way to boost your rankings with images. See the free tool I use and how to do this in less than a minute.

Geotagging Local Business Videos
01:40
Article

In addition to geotagging your images you can also add additional information to each image for maximum SEO benefit. Let's look at what information to add and how to do it.

04:29

Using schema markup on your website is a huge opportunity for local businesses because most local businesses don't take advantage of it. In this lecture we'll discuss exactly what schema is, why you should be using it on local business websites and how to test your website to see if any schema already exists.

09:00

Now that you have a much better understanding of what schema is, we're ready to take a closer look at how to actually implement it for maximum benefit.

Additional Schema Markup To Use For Local Business Websites
10:54
2 pages

Download this local business schema cheat sheet for examples of how to integrate schema on your website.

05:13

It's very important to set a preferred URL in order to prevent Google and other search engines from indexing two versions of your website. Here we'll look at what your options are and how to set your preferred domain in just a couple of easy steps.

04:47

How quickly your website loads is an important ranking (and conversion) factor. Even shaving just a second or two off of your site's load time can make an enormous difference. Here we talk about what impacts your page speed, how to see what Google thinks about your page speed and how to make your site load faster.

Relationship Between Page Speed and Hosting
02:42
02:51

Check to see if your site content and images are being used elsewhere. This will make sure you're getting the credit for your content and can even give you potential back link opportunities from those who have used your content.

06:29

XML sitemaps can help search engines discover new pages and better navigate your site which can help with getting all of your site pages indexed. Let's look at how to create, test and submit an XML sitemap.

05:31

in April 2015, Google rolled out the Mobile Update which gave websites with a mobile friendly version a boost in rankings over those that did not have that. Watch as I test the website to see how mobile friendly it is in the eyes of Google.

Article

Here you'll find several resources for on-page optimization including commonly asked questions and resources for even more help on the topic.

00:50

I greatly value student feedback. This feedback helps me continue to improve the course and add more content to the course to help you.

Section 9: Tracking The Impact Of A Website Redesign
03:59

After redesigning this local business website and completing the on-page optimization, I gathered feedback from the client and launched the website. Here we talk about the client's feedback and take a look at the newly designed website.

05:54

As you work to rank your website on the first page of Google it's helpful to monitor your site's progress so you can see what's working and what positions you have achieved. Here you can take a look at the tools I use to track my local SEO rankings.

Article

We take a look at a few tools I use to track rankings but there are so many out there to choose from. Here is a list of some of the best ranking tracking tools available today. Everyone is always looking for the "best" tool but I suggest that you try out a handful of tools and see which one you like the best and works best for you.

04:38

After launching a newly redesigned website, it's important to monitor the impact the redesign has made. Here we look at what metrics to monitor to see how effective the redesign is.

Section 10: Website Relaunch & What's Next
05:42

After the new site has been launched there are a few tasks that should be completed immediately that are very easy to overlook but very important.

Article

With your website relaunched (if you are going through a redesign process) and fully optimized, now it's time to turn our focus to off-page optimization. In local SEO this means we need to focus on two primary areas: citation building and link building.

02:43

A Google My Business account is an important first step for ranking a website in the Google local pack. Let's look at what the Google local pack is and why it's important for local businesses.

Section 11: Creating Your Google My Business Listing
02:11

Before you create a new account, it's very important to make sure you don't already have one. Here's how to double check.

05:10

Setting up a new Google My Business account is easy. Let's look at the step-by-step process for doing so.

Article

When working to rank in Google it's always a good idea to take a look at the information Google provides you so you can make sure to do what they ask and to avoid anything they would not like.

Section 12: Optimizing Your Google My Business Page
00:26

In this section we're going to look at exactly how to optimize your Google My Business profile for maximum benefit.

02:18

Let's start by getting familiar with the Google My Dashboard so you can see where things are and how to use it.

05:59

Now that you've created a Google My Business account, let's make sure it's fully optimized so you can get as much value from it as possible.

03:18

Let's continue the discussion on optimizing your Google My Business profile and look at a few additional steps.

04:21

Some local businesses have multiple locations or stores. Here's how to set-up a Google My Business account for businesses with multiple locations.

Section 13: Ranking Your Google My Business Listing
00:31

With your Google My Business account fully set-up and optimized, now it's time to turn our attention to ranking our listing in the Google Local Pack and that's exactly what we're going to cover in this section.

01:30

Where will the local business rank in the top 20 listings? Let's have a look.

01:27

Citations are a key component for ranking in the Google local pack. Let's talk about the role they play.

01:20

Both citations and links are very important for ranking organically and in the Google local pack but what's the difference between citations and back links? Here we'll break down the difference.

03:05

Although citations are important for Google local pack rankings, how many citations do you need? In this lecture, we discuss how to determine how many the local business you are working with will need.

05:25

Before you start building citations, it's important to take a few minutes to see where the business is already listed and the quality of those citations. Here is how you can find out what citations already exist.

Where to Find Citations
03:06
07:14

Using premium tools will typically provide you with more information and save you a lot of time regardless of what you're working on. In this lecture, I share two of my favorite local citation building tools that I use on a regular basis. These tools help you find citations with a click of a button and also see which of the existing citations needs improvement.

00:44

It's very important to track the citations you are working on so you can update them in the future and also see which ones have been submitted and which ones are live.

4 pages

If the local business is located in the United States, here is a downloadable list of 94 possible citation sources to start with.

3 pages

If the local business is located in the UK, here is a downloadable list of 60 possible citation sources to start with.

3 pages

If the local business is located in Australia, here is a downloadable list of 53 possible citation sources to start with.

2 pages

If the local business is located in Canada, here is a downloadable list of 42 possible citation sources to start with.

2 pages

If the local business is located in the Netherlands, here is a downloadable list of 25 possible citation sources to start with.

Article

Mixing up your citation sources a bit is a good idea. Industry relevant citations can help you do this. In this lecture I share some resources for where to find some possible industry specific citation sources.

01:53

With all the citation sources to choose from it can be overwhelming to figure out where to start. But you can easily figure out which citations to go after first. In this lecture we look at how to find out so you can create your citation building plan.

03:12

Your website will play an important role in ranking in the Google local pack. In this lecture we explore what to do on your website to help with your rankings.

05:17

Analyzing your competition in the organic search results is very important so you can figure out what you will need to do to outrank those competitions. Likewise, it's important to take a closer look at your competition to see what they are doing and not doing to rank in the local pack so you can determine just how hard you'll need to work to outrank them.

Section 14: The Importance of Google Reviews
00:30

Another important factor for both ranking and conversion in the Google local pack is the number of reviews a business has. In this section we take a look at why we need reviews, how many we need and how to get more.

01:30

Before we look at how many reviews you need and how to get them, let's take just a minute to talk about how important reviews are and the difference they can make for rankings and conversion.

Students Who Viewed This Course Also Viewed

  • Loading
  • Loading
  • Loading

Instructor Biography

Christine Maisel, Helping Web Design & SEO Startups

Christine is the founder of the Portable Entrepreneur where she directly helps web design and SEO startups through education, coaching and services. 

Christine has been a web designer for nearly 15 years - 10 of which she has been self-employed. Her work has taken her from working for some start-up dot com companies in the early 2000's to working as a contractor for the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense to her own home office.

In her time, she has built 100's of websites and blogs primarily on WordPress and Joomla. Christine has also provided training to individuals and businesses to help them manage their websites on their own with no knowledge of web coding.

Ready to start learning?
Take This Course