Local SEO (Search Engine Optimization) refers to search optimization with a regional focus, for instance targeting a city such as Vancouver. An example of local search engine optimization would be my website, Blender Design, targeting searches originating in the Vancouver metropolitan area. For a local business this means focusing SEO efforts to compete for the searches that matter most — potential local clients.
I’m sure you’ve already noticed that search results are tailored to the searcher. If a search engine, and by search engine I really mean Google, believes local search results would better answer a query, then local results will be prioritized. For instance, if you do a Google search for “best restaurant” you will likely see a couple of websites followed by a list of local restaurants. For many obvious local searches Google takes this a step further and includes an area map of results. (more…)
When longtime Vancouver client Lori Miles of Sweet Pea Photography called Blender to ask for some updates to her website, to bring it up-to-date and give her website a little facelift, it was probably overdue. Lori takes amazing photos and gets some high profile clients and media exposure, which needed to be showcased. From a potential clients standpoint it is important to show them what you are up to and where your work is going. From an SEO standpoint you want your website to be viewed as current and deserving of good results placement.
As for the facelift Lori asked to change the website from it’s existing elegant black to a crisp white. Not as simple as it sounds, but what a difference!
Sweet Pea Photography is due from some other needed updates like transitioning away from Flash, but that doesn’t feel as urgent with it’s fresh new look.
It’s important to keep a website up to date, both the content and the construction. After adding some more photos and a few new pages it was time to bring Vancouver’s The Emerald Coast up to date with regards to web standards.
Emerald’s website was originally based on a website template that featured a Flash banner at the time. Common practice at the time to incorporate some animation and give websites a little punch, Flash now was a useability and SEO hindrance. IPads/IPhones don’t display flash items, and the content is often ignored or poorly interpreted by search engines.
Emerald liked the look so Blender extracted the good and reworked using modern HTML design. Next some jQuery animations to get back that punch and we’ll leave alone for another few years…
As Blender I have worked with clients from as far away as Australia, but by far the majority are local small businesses here in Vancouver. I like it like this. Over the years I have built solid relationships with clients that have supported and grown my business.
While meeting in person might seem inefficient, the truth is sitting across from someone you can exchange ideas much more easily. Meeting face to face is something you take for granted in a normal workplace, but as a self employed independent web designer, personal contact is gold!
It’s not unusual to be meeting with a client or just talking with someone and learning that I have worked with someone close to them. The vast majority of my clients have come from referrals so reaching this local critical mass feels really good.
So — Thanks Vancouver Clients!
New client Squeeze Vancouver had a website already, but it’s search engine traffic was very disappointing. Blender was hired to optimize the website to better compete with other local chair massage businesses. We quickly identified some structural problems with the website, worked with the client to create some new content, and developed an SEO plan.
UPDATE: Blender is happy to report that Squeeze has received it’s first clients from organic search! After a little over a month clicks through Google are up 87%. Most importantly we are seeing our targeted search phrases starting to appear on the first page in some searches.
Blender is happy to welcome new client Genssante. Blender will be doing their ongoing maintenance and updates. First task — update the website using php scripting to make maintaining it easier and cheaper.
Thanks to client Mark Rosengarten (markrosengartenmd.ca) for the referral.
Shortly after having Blender give his website facelift and back-end overhaul longtime client Gary Mitchell learned his book was being published. He decided a complete re-design was in order to focus in this new direction.
As part of the previous update Blender had converted Gary’s website to WordPress based content management system (CMS). This meant we could now change the entire appearance of his website without touching the contents. Gary would edit and update his content while Blender restyled the appearance.
Longtime client Gary Mitchell first hired Blender in 2006. He recently wanted to update and re-brand the website for his core business GEM Communications. His existing website was dated, performed poorly from a Search Engine Optimization (SEO) standpoint, and used technologies such as Flash which are no longer suitable for general website design. Gary wanted a modern website that would give him all the advantages the internet offers.
Our redesign stayed true to the appearance of the old, but completely replaced the foundation and back end. Blender recommended using the WordPress Content Management System (CMS) so that Gary could maintain the content of On Trac on his own ensuring his website was always up to date. WordPress offers well structured web pages where search engines are concerned and scales well to any size website.
Another focus was an expansion into social media including LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter. On Trac would have a presence on all three with the website acting as a hub from which content would be shared out.
The success of the re-design will be tracked using integrated Google Analytics for traffic monitoring. Visitors can give feedback through website feedback forms, a blog post comment system, and through social media integration.
Visit On Trac Coaching
Long time client Gary Mitchell of GEM Communications wanted his website re-branded and updated. On the top of his list of requirements was a content management system and an SEO friendly design. You can check out the progress at OnTracCoach.com. Watch for a more in depth launch announcement here…