Local SEO vs. organic SEO

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SEO is one of the pillars of Internet marketing. Any company that wants to attract new customers and scale its business should take an interest in search engine positioning efforts. However, they take on many different forms, so choosing the right ones can be a challenge for you. One issue to consider is whether it is better to focus on organic or local SEO. What is the difference between one and the other, and how can you make the right decision? Check out our guide!

What is organic SEO?

Most entrepreneurs and professionals, when talking about SEO, actually mean organic activities leading to gaining the highest possible positions in Google’s search engine results pages (SERPs). This is because sites within the TOP10 (and especially the TOP3) have a significantly higher click-through rate (CTR), which translates into a lot of traffic to the site. It is worth mentioning that this is high-quality traffic, as it consists of users searching for phrases directly related to the scope of these sites’ activities.

These are the phrases on which the most important organic SEO efforts are based. Their purpose is primarily to position the site for specific user queries. As a result, Internet users typing the keywords in question into Google will see the sites that best relate to them in the top positions in the search engine. However, it is worth remembering that positioning is a very complex and time-consuming process. You usually have to wait a few months to achieve results, as large companies most often occupy the highest listing positions with sizable marketing budgets.

Organic SEO – best practices

Organic SEO activities can be divided into on-site and off-site techniques. Most of the optimization work is concentrated in the former group. These include, for example:

  • Optimization of page titles and meta descriptions
  • The distribution of H1, H2, H3, etc. headings
  • Internal and external linking
  • Creating high-quality content for specific keywords
  • Technical issues (including URL configuration, optimization of page loading speed, the responsiveness of the mobile version or redirects)

To conduct on-site activities, it is necessary to know the phrases for which the site is to be positioned. To this end, a keyword analysis is performed before any work begins.

Off-site techniques, on the other hand, center around external linking. The number and quality of links leading to a page is one of the most important ranking factors for Google. This means that the more backlinks from credible and reliable sites there are, the higher the site’s position in the search results is. Sponsored publications and high-quality content that is voluntarily shared online is particularly helpful in acquiring those.

What is local SEO?

Local SEO is a more niche SEO strategy for a website, focusing on a specific geographic region. Its main purpose is to get the site into the list of three results displayed by Google with a map for local queries (e.g., a restaurant, hotel, pizza, etc.). These results are intended for users in the immediate area:

The effect of local positioning is to attract consumers who are looking for specific services in a specific location. According to statistics, 76% of them visit the chosen establishment within 24 hours. It is, therefore, an excellent tool for smaller companies targeting only the local market. In their case, organic SEO efforts are very difficult to implement (due to insufficient resources to compete with large companies) and make little sense (due to the concentration of the target audience in one location).

Local SEO efforts are particularly focused on Google business cards and visibility in the Google Maps application. This is by far the most important channel in this area. However, it is also worth remembering other local lists through which you can reach out to new customers. These include, for example:

  • Other lists that use geotargeting (such as YellowPages or Foursquare, which works with TikTok),
  • Specialized lists (e.g., TripAdvisor for tourist sites or Polish website ZnanyLekarz for medical services),
  • Social media (e.g., Facebook and LinkedIn).

Local SEO – the best practices

As we mentioned above, local SEO should focus primarily on your Google My Business profile. The most important issues include:

  • Registration and active maintenance of the Google My Business profile: Each brand location should have its own business card, which should include its current details. The profile should include names, exact addresses, contact information, and opening hours. You also need to ensure that they are consistent with the data posted on the company’s website.
  • Publishing photos and videos: Graphics and videos strongly engage users and work well as additional information about the company. Before visiting an establishment, consumers like to know as much as possible about it – including what it looks like. Photos and videos will therefore prove especially important for hotels or restaurants.
  • Optimization for mobile devices: Users looking for certain services in their area often do so using smartphones. For this reason, a business owner should make sure that his or her website and Google My Business card are displayed correctly on any type of device.
  • Focusing on attributes: Attributes are information that can differentiate a company from its competitors. They allow the user to find out, for example, whether the establishment is child- or pet-friendly, what the atmosphere is like, and whether it has parking. The availability of attributes depends on the category of the company.
  • Moderation and feedback: User-generated reviews are one of the most important elements of a Google My Business card. People planning to visit a particular establishment are more likely to read the ratings and comments of its past customers beforehand. For this reason, it is always worth responding to feedback (both positive and negative), thus presenting a serious approach to consumers.
  • Regular postings: Google My Business card also allows you to publish short, temporary posts. For example, they can be about current promotions or brand events. In the eyes of potential customers, this type of content shows that the company is active and keeps in touch with its audience.

Monitoring the Q&A section: Google users have the opportunity to ask questions about specific companies. They are usually answered by customers who have already had contact with a particular establishment. However, this can also be done by the entrepreneur himself. It is worth remembering that search engine algorithms appreciate a Q&A list that is updated on a regular basis. Below is an example of what such a section looks like:

Local SEO vs. Organic SEO – summary

When comparing local SEO with organic SEO, it is impossible to say that one of these strategies is better than the other. This is because they are used in slightly different situations. Knowing the key differences between the two, you will easily answer the question of which will prove more effective in your case and which tools to use in the SEO process.

If you have a business operating in the local market, definitely take an interest in local SEO. Firstly, you’ll see the results of your work faster, and secondly, you’ll reach valuable customers more easily. And this is where Center.ai’s role begins. 
Check out the local SEO solutions we offer and start working on your company’s visibility on Google today! A 14-day free trial period is also available to you!