What Exactly Is Localized SEO?

Catherine Park
March 19, 2021
380 Views

Search Engine Optimization has been around for a little while now. Soon after search engine developers started using complex algorithms to rank results based on perceived levels of relevance, marketing experts began figuring out how they could help clients crawl up those rankings. Search Engine Optimization is a constantly evolving field. One of the most significant developments in recent years is the localization of SEO campaigns. Localized SEO is now a huge part of the industry. But what exactly is it, why does it need to exist, and what made it possible? 

What Do People Want From A Search?

The key to understanding localized Search Engine Optimization lies in an understanding of what search engines want to give to their users. Algorithmic development at companies like Google is catalyzed by the evolving needs or desires of the searching public. One thing that really bugged people during the early days of the internet was the inability of search engines to filter out irrelevant results. Partially, these unwanted results were simply unrelated to the search despite containing keywords. Another issue with irrelevant results was to do with localization.  

Search engine users were frustrated with getting a disproportionate amount of non-local results when they were searching for businesses, institutions, or locations. Search engine algorithms had no way of filtering relevance by locality. In response to public polling and market research, the most successful search engines redesigned their algorithms to incorporate geographic relevance. This put a spanner in the works for many SEO companies, who helped clients to game the algorithm without taking geography into consideration. As per usual, the industry adapted: localized SEO strategies were born. 

A Wide Net Or A Precision Strike?

SEO agencies began offering completely localized services. If, for instance, you wanted to promote your Floridian business’ site, you would hire a sarasota seo company to run a targeted campaign in your local area. This has two benefits. Firstly, a localized SEO campaign that focuses on building local link trails and hyper-relevant marketing materials will be more likely to have great results because of modern geographic search engine rankings. Secondly, it is far more likely to get a website to people who might actually become customers: those local to the business being promoted. The difference can be startling. Think of traditional SEO like a wide net: spreading catchment over a wide area and occasionally catching the right local people’s attention. Localized SEO is more like a fishing spear: operating over a smaller area but more concentrated on the target. 

The Evolution Of Google

Google is by far the largest search engine website. The evolution of Google’s algorithm has been highly influential on the parallel development of localized SEO strategies. Google is always working on generating more relevant search results for its users, and this includes making results more geographically relevant to them. They have pioneered the localization of search results with their year-by-year algorithm updates. The incorporation of Google Maps into Google Search has exponentially increased the importance of localization in SEO. 

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