Google the term “WordPress” and you’ll see that it’s now the most popular content management system (CMS) in the world. It powers over 27% of all websites on the internet today.
While WordPress is great for general-purpose website development, it’s also a fantastic platform for developing local business websites.
There are a few key things you can do to make sure your WordPress site is optimized for local search.
In this article, we’ll show you how to optimize your WordPress site for local search.
1) Install the Yoast SEO Plugin
The first thing you need to do is install the Yoast SEO plugin. It’s a free plugin that helps you optimize your website for search engines.
Once you’ve installed and activated the plugin, click on the ‘SEO’ tab in the left-hand sidebar of your WordPress dashboard. Then click on ‘General’.
Scroll down to the ‘Your info’ section and enter your company name, address, and phone number. This information will be used by Google to display your business information in the search results.
2) Add Your Business to Google My Business
The next step is to add your business to Google My Business (GMB). GMB is a free service from Google that allows businesses to manage their online presence.
When you add your business to GMB, you’ll be able to control how your business appears in Google Search and Maps.
To get started, go to the GMB website and click on ‘Add your business’. Enter your business name and address. Then click on the ‘Verify now’ button.
Google will send you a verification code by mail. Once you’ve received the code, enter it into the GMB verification page and your business will be verified.
3) Optimize your website for Local Keywords
The next step is to optimize your website for local keywords. When people search for businesses like yours, they’ll typically include a location keyword in their query.
For example, if someone is searching for a WordPress developer in Los Angeles, they might search for “WordPress developer LA” or “WordPress development Los Angeles”.
To make sure your website appears in these types of searches, you need to include local keywords in your content.
Fortunately, the Yoast SEO plugin makes it easy to do this. Simply enter your target keyword into the ‘Focus keyword’ field on the Yoast SEO settings page.
Then scroll down to the ‘Content optimization’ section and make sure the ‘Enable advanced settings?’ option is checked.
Scroll down to the ‘Advanced settings for focus keyword’ section and enter your target keyword into the ‘Location(s)’ field.
4) Add Schema Markup to Your website
Schema markup is a code that you can add to your website to help search engines understand your content.
When you add schema markup to your website, you’re essentially giving search engines a road map of your site. This helps them index your pages correctly and display your content in the search results.
There are a number of different types of schema markup, but the most common one used for local businesses is the Local Business schema.
The easiest way to add schema markup to your WordPress site is to use the Yoast SEO plugin. Simply go to the ‘SEO’ tab in your WordPress dashboard and click on ‘General’. Then scroll down to the ‘Webmaster tools’ section and click on the ‘Google Search Console’ tab.
Click on the ‘Get Google authorization code’ button and enter your Google account information. Once you’ve logged in, you’ll be given a code to copy and paste into the Yoast SEO plugin.
5) Add Your Business to Local Directories
Another great way to optimize your WordPress site for local search is to add your business to local directories.
There are a number of different directories you can add your business to, but the most important one is Google My Business.
As we mentioned earlier, GMB is a free service from Google that allows businesses to manage their online presence.
By following the steps above, you can optimize your WordPress site for local search. This will help you get more traffic from Google and improve your chances of ranking in the search results.
If you want to learn more about SEO and how to get more traffic from Google, we recommend checking out our free SEO course.