Local SEO Tips for Franchises.
Running a franchise comes with its own unique challenges around managing and growing your local SEO presence. With the right plan, your franchise SEO strategy can enable both franchisees and franchisors to work together to collaboratively grow their business.
Why SEO Matters for Franchises.
How we shop has changed. The browsing that used to occur in the aisles now happens online. Frequently, customers will do all the research they need on the web and simply visit a store to pick up their purchase. Local SEO is critical for bringing in organic traffic and boosting revenue on both a local and franchise-wide scale.
The Importance of Local SEO.
“Near me” searches have exploded in frequency over the last few years, providing a potential influx of customers to franchisees who are able to leverage their local proximity to pull in this new traffic.
Don’t believe it? Here are some stats that might change your mind:
of people who use online search, look for local businesses
of all searches
include a location
of local searches
result in a purchase
The Challenges of SEO for Franchises.
→ Franchises are inherently more complicated. Everything from multiple locations and web pages, simultaneous ad campaigns, and conflicting operating hours can be critical factors to keep track of and manage.
→ Ultimately franchises are collaborative entities, and this can result in some blurred lines and stepped-on toes. But this collaborative nature has its advantages, with the right planning and delineation, both franchisees and franchisors can play to their strengths and get the best of both nationwide and local efforts. For example; you’ll need to decide upfront if you are going to have a single corporate website with control over multiple landing pages for each location, or allow franchisees to manage and change their own landing page. What works best will change from business to business, but having a clear plan in place will be helpful regardless of the situation.
How to Improve Your Franchise Local SEO.
Manage Your Listings and Google Business Profiles.
✓ With possibly conflicting information like different operating hours and multiple locations, franchisees have to pay more attention to their listing. A Google Business Profile will allow you to keep tabs on relevant information like name, address, and phone number (NAP) all in one place.
✓ Conflicting information will count against you with things like Google’s ranking algorithm, as well as confuse potential customers. This becomes more important for franchises as there can be some potential confusion with the existence of more than one location, often in close proximity.
✓ While Google might get the most attention, it’s not the only place you should list your franchise. You should register your business on Bing Places for Business and other local directory sites like Yellow Pages.
Improve your Google Business Profile.
✓ Populate your GBP with high-quality video and images. Not only does this make your profile more interesting to anyone who comes across it, but it also signals to Google that you’re actively engaged on the platform. Make sure to include tags and descriptions for any content you post!
✓ Check your links and redirects regularly. Make sure that all of your Call-to-Actions (CTAs) like making a reservation or checking a menu take visitors to the correct URL.
Location-specific landing pages.
✓ Once a potential customer has clicked on one of the CTAs on your Google Business Profile, they should be redirected to a webpage specific to that franchise location. As mentioned, these pages can either be set up in mass by the franchisor or managed individually, but there are some things that every location-specific page should have.
✓ These sites should have everything a visitor needs to learn more about your business and navigate to the nearest location. Include up-to-date operating hours, contact information, and directions. You can even include Google Maps integrations on your website to make it easier for your customers to navigate to your location.
✓ Take advantage of these pages to post pictures of your product and staff. Include compelling local testimonials that show off that you’re a trusted local business. If you post any longer copy, make sure to use location-specific terms like “the best ice cream in Santa Monica” in whatever you post.
Improve your Google Business Profile.
✓ Schema markup will also allow you to include location-specific keywords within your website and boost local engagement. You will have the opportunity to build in key information like location, price range, and rating right into your website. This will make the information easier for Google to understand and present to your customers.
Ready to see how we can help you?
Running a franchise is complicated enough without having to worry about conflicting listing and redirecting websites.
By breaking down Local SEO into its component pieces, it can be easily delegated and accomplished. If you need someone to take the stress off your shoulders, a dedicated Listings Management or Locator & Local Pages service can make your life that much easier.
Get in touch here or explore our case study: