Until cannabis has been legalized nationwide, business owners in the marijuana industry must be mindful of where they place their focus. Until you can legally ship your products from Colorado to Texas, your marketing philosophy should never stray too far from your home base.
But even in hyper-local markets, your customer’s journey still begins online. Recent studies suggest that 80% of customers look online before they decide to decide to buy from a business, and 77% of those customers use Google to begin their search. Most business know about using SEO (search engine optimization but far too few practice local SEO.
Local SEO is extremely important, especially for small to mid-sized business that don’t yet compete in the national market. Due to the legal constraints placed on the cannabis industry, your goal is to reach potential customers within your area of service. Local SEO is the best way to do this. Get on the path to search engine dominance by following these proven local SEO strategies.
HOW TO DOMINATE LOCAL SEO IN YOUR AREA
STEP 1: OPTIMIZE YOUR WEBSITE
Optimizing your website properly will ensure that it will appear high up on Google’s SERP (search engine results page) for searches done within your area of service. The following are a few tips for optimizing your site properly:
Include both the name of your business and its location in your domain name. For example, if your company name is The Cannabis Store and you operate out of Boulder, Colorado then consider thecannabisstoreboulder.com as your domain name.
Use keywords that are relevant to both your business and to the community it serves. For instance, instead of using “cannabis products” as a keyword, use “cannabis products in Boulder.” This helps to narrow your audience down to those that are performing searches in the Boulder area, which in turn draws higher-quality leads to your site. Keywords should be used in your titles, content, anchor text, ALT image text and meta descriptions.
Add your NAP (name, address and phone number) to each page of your website, including your homepage and contact page.
2. CREATE LOCALLY FOCUSED CONTENT
Create a blog and write content that is based on local news or topics relevant to your specific community. Publishing local content is a good way to boost local SEO. For example, publish a blog post on Fourth of July events being held in or around the neighborhood your store is located in. Then, when someone searches for Fourth of July events in that area, your site is more likely to come up.
3. SUBMIT YOUR CONTACT INFORMATION TO LOCAL DIRECTORIES
Submit your contact information, including name, address, and phone number to various online directories, including Yelp and Yellowbook to Facebook and Google. Make absolutely sure that the information you submit is correct. If the information differs from listing to listing, it can actually hurt your ranking. When submitting your info to local directories, make sure that you list your business in the appropriate category and that you use relevant keywords to optimize your description. Consider making your listings more informative by adding links to your site, photos, videos and more when possible.
4. ENCOURAGE ONLINE REVIEWS
Ask your customers and followers to review your business online. The more positive reviews you have on sites like Yelp, Facebook and Google, the stronger your local SEO will be. Be sure to respond to various reviews as well. Address the problems raised in negative reviews and thank customers for positive reviews.
NEED HELP GETTING STARTED? ASK THE GURUS!
Completing a successful local SEO strategy is a complicated, time-consuming process. Don’t go it alone. At Marijuana Marketing Gurus, we provide a steady hand to guide you through your digital marketing journey. Combining our deep knowledge of your industry with cutting-edge marketing tactics, we lead growing cannabusinesses towards their full market potential. Ready to elevate your business to new heights? Consult the Gurus and begin the journey.