Local SEO tips to market your SME to the Singapore audience

Targeting the local Singapore market and keen to drive traffic to your website through organic search engine traffic? Follow some simple steps so that your Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) and online marketing efforts generate the best results for you. These are quite basic common sense marketing methods- albeit, often ignored- that can help your business benefit from digital marketing.

1. Create a Google Places / Bing Places’ listing for your business:
If you have paid attention to search engine results pages closely in recent times, the local bias is hard to miss. A significant portion of the SERP real estate is now occupied by Places’ results, especially for search queries that have a location qualifier in them. Not only do queries such as ‘dermatologist Singapore’ or ‘Singapore copywriting’ generate results from Places, you will find generic queries such as ‘dermatologists’ or ‘bone specialists’ on Google.com.sg return local results.  The interesting thing is that visibility in these Places’ results does not require a business to even have a website! Of course, there are a couple of verification processes that one has to go through before the local listing on Places’ goes live, but having a presence right at the top of search results will certainly give a huge boost to your lead generation efforts.

2. Submit your website/ business listing to local business directories & online yellow pages:
Online yellow pages and business directories are very powerful channels that can drive business leads, often for free. Getting your business listed on sites like StreetDirectory.com, inSing.com or even SingaporeBizServices.com will help give you visibility.  This is because many of these sites are extremely good at local SEO and have built their own captive audience and traffic over a period of time. Creating a business profile listing on these sites should certainly be high on your marketing agenda. Don’t be surprised to see that over 25% of traffic to your website and a significant proportion of business inquiries comes via these business profile listings!

3. Build links to your website from other local websites:
The foundation of your link bulding strategy should be ‘local’ and as you look for link prospects, focus on local websites. So, if you are trying to rank your website on Google Singapore so as to attract business leads from Singapore, your  highest priority link prospects should be other Singapore-based businesses/ websites.

4. Get articles published on local websites and publications:
It is commonly accepted that various off-page SEO activities move into the realm of press and public relations. This tip is one such– identify websites and local print publications that carry guest contributions, contact the editor(s) with article proposals and contribute good, original content. Certainly, it is time consuming and takes a bit of leg work, but the results from this are well worth the effort!

5. Ensure your website leaves enough local signals:
While many of the tips above can work for businesses that don’t even have a website, this one is particularly for those with a website. Apart from local geographical signals that you can provide right upfront (for example, ensuring you have a .sg or .com.sg domain name; setting the geographic targeting in Google Webmaster Tools as Singapore), you should leave appropriate ‘signals’ within the website to indicate that you rank high for local search queries. Some of these steps will include mentioning your location on the Title tag of some of your pages; prominently featuring your complete mailing address; or mentioning your location along with the copyright information on your footer, etc.

This article is an edited version of an article originally published on  Netmarketer.in and is reproduced with due permission. 

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