Does Blogging Help Local Rankings?

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Most Local SEOs will say that blogging is an integral part of successful local search engine optimization (SEO).

However, the question remains: does it really help to blog for local search rankings?

This article takes a look at whether or not blogging helps with local search engine rankings and what kind of results you might expect if you commit yourself to blogging regularly.

Does Blogging Help Local Rankings?
It also explains how social signals play a role in local rankings, which blogs rank best in Google by industry, and offers up some advice on selecting keywords for your website that mean business.

Just Another Local Blogger?

One of the main reasons Local SEOs blog is because they believe it helps with local rankings.

If you regularly read articles from prominent Local Search Optimization practitioners, you will most likely find a recurring theme about blogging which says that regular blogs for your website are essential to achieving better local search engine results.

However, this isn’t really confirmed by Google itself or any other kind of industry body.

In fact, when asked whether they believed that regular blogging was important SerpIQ said:

“We have never seen a correlation between inbound links and ranking positions in local SERPs.”

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What we do know is how Google views backlinks and their importance in an algorithm that delivers great results to its users around the world.

Google’s Matt Cutts has said on many occasions that backlinks are among the top three ranking factors , and they continue to receive a lot of attention from Google as we saw when Penguin was released.

This is why it makes sense to blog regularly and link your posts to important pages within your website.

This will not only tell search engines like Google that you’re more authoritative than your competitors, but also increase the visibility of those linked-to pages .
It could be argued that this is why blogging has some positive affect on local rankings.

The problem with this explanation is there hasn’t been any real evidence (that i know of) as to why blogging helps improve local search engine rankings.

But if you use common sense, it begins to make sense that it should.
So, don’t write-off blogging as having no affect on local rankings.

Social Connections = Social Signals?

The importance of social signals in search engine results is not something new .

Since
2009 Google have been using social signals to determine how authoritative certain websites are.
Examples include Tweets, YouTube videos, likes and shares of Facebook posts, etc…
While this may be the case, it’s important to recognize that Google doesn’t operate in quite the same way with regards to local search results.

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According to Moz , Google has said that “Although they’re treated similarly in many algorithms (and certainly both impact pagerank), links and mentions are NOT same thing from an algorithmic perspective.
Links and mentions operate under different mechanics, with different impacts.”

This means that you cannot assume that any social signals (i.e.
likes on Facebook posts) will directly impact your local rankings in the same way as normal web-based search results.

That said, some believe there is some kind of correlation between local rankings and social activity .

According to an article by Moz , “when we first started digging into the data…one thing we noticed was a bigger than expected positive correlation between tweets and Google+1s on a page and its ranking for certain types of queries.” They also go on later to say, “…we can see slight bumps in rankings due to tweets or +1s about those pages.”

How Does Blogging Affect Local Rankings?

So, if you want to improve your local rankings it’s important that you write blog posts which contain the relevant keywords, and link back-to them via other pages on your website.

This is where Google uses these keywords in their algorithm because they are considered to be more authoritative than others.

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What About The Competition?

If you’re blogging for local rankings, don’t forget about what your competitors are doing.
According to an article by ReelSEO ,

“Your competition might not have a website at all or maybe they do but it sucks! Either way, taking advantage of this fact just might give you the competitive edge over them when it comes to ranking in the SERPs.”

This is why it’s important to understand your competition, and what they’re doing with their online presence.

If you produce quality content that looks great on the eye, links back-to other relevant pages of your own website, then there is no reason why you won’t rank higher for certain keywords in local search results.

Conclusion
blogging can help improve local rankings by more than just increasing authority through backlinks.

When done right, blogging can actually lead to increased visibility which will be picked up by Googlebot as a strong signal towards where your page should be ranked .

It’s not always easy to recommend ‘one thing’ when it comes to SEO because there are so many factors at play that impact how well you rank for any kind of keywords on search engines.

That said, I believe that blogging is one of the most cost effective ways to improve your local rankings, whilst also seeing an increase in social signals which are just as important.

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Yes…
Blogging Can Help Local Rankings!

It’s a well known fact that backlinks help Google determine where your website should rank for certain keywords and phrases within it’s results pages.

However, let me ask you this; do you think that links from other websites with no authority or trustworthiness will pass the same weighting into your own?

That’s like saying – “I don’t want to pay taxes, but if someone else does then I’ll be ok with it.”

It doesn’t make sense because Google isn’t going to value your authority and trustworthiness within it’s results pages if you don’t have any of these factors.

Not only do you need to build more authority and trust, but you also need to be consistent with how frequently you publish new content as well as what topics you write about.

This is all part of establishing yourself as an expert within your niche, which will help Google better understand that your website deserves a spot within it’s search engine results pages (SERPs).

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