Today’s global economy has created a world where people work remotely from all over the globe. However, there are also positions like interior design where local business is always going to be a part of the job. In that case, it’s important to optimize your website and other online listings for local SEO. This will ensure that you get the rankings you deserve and that you’re able to outpace the competition with your local marketing.
The trick to local SEO is that while keywords do play an integral role, Google is far more interested in substance these days. It wants to connect people with reputable, authoritative companies that know what they’re talking about, and by properly optimizing your interior design firm’s website, you’ll be sure to catch the eye of the search engines as one of those companies.
A lot of people want to just tack locations onto existing keywords and call it local SEO. While that might work in some instances, it’s not the preferred option. Instead, you should perform research on keywords just like you did with your general SEO strategy. This will allow you to find the best ranking local keywords related to interior design and ensure that you’re optimizing your content appropriately.
Take the time to do a little looking around. Think like a consumer here, too. Consider optimizing for the increasingly popular “near me” search term. It takes some work, but you can come up with a perfect list of keywords to get you started on your local optimization if you put in a little time and energy.
Social networks are not a space where you simply create a profile and walk away. Just having a profile is not enough. If you are never posting anything or only sharing limited content, it’s time to make some changes. You need to get involved here, engage with your audience, and create personalized relationships that will help people decide that you’re their first pick when they need a designer in the future.
Speaking of social networks, interior designers mustn’t forget about sites like Pinterest and Instagram—these are great places to share your own designs, inspirations from other designers, and anything else that your heart desires. Your clients and other audience members will get a chance to know you better on a more social level and see what you’re capable of. And, when you do it right, Instagram and Pinterest can become their own self-marketing resources just by showing off your work.
Formerly Google My Business, or GMB to some, this profile is the foundation of your entire local optimization strategy. Without it, Google won’t even look twice at your design firm, let alone assume that you’re worthy of being ranked among the best local options. Fill out the profile completely, make sure that your name and address are consistent with other listings, and utilize tags and categories so that you can get the best possible ranking with this profile and provide people (and Google) with the information they need.
Whether you ask for them or they’re given freely, reviews and testimonials are two things that you need to take advantage of when it comes to optimizing your reputation. Good reviews can get you good recognition. In the same light, though, negative reviews could cost you valuable reputation points. Address any negative reviews as soon as you see them and try to come to a resolution. If you cannot resolve the issue in the review, consider reaching out or inviting the reviewer to reach out another way.
The very fact that you took the time to even address the concern shows that you’re a more upstanding business than those who choose to simply ignore negative reviews. What’s worse are the companies that try to pile on good reviews to make up for the bad—just manage your reviews properly and use them accordingly. People (and Google) will notice if you’re trying to “stack the deck,” if you will.
Whether it’s on your own blog or other websites as a guest, you need to make sure that you’re constantly curating and creating new content to share with audiences in the interior design world. You should take the time to craft a blog that reflects your knowledge and expertise and to build relationships with other designers, construction industry professionals, and other creatives that might share clients or audiences with you. This level of engagement will set you apart from the rest and show the search engines, and the people, that your design firm is worth their time.
Try to get your interior design firm listed in appropriate local business directories or industry directories. In doing this, you’ll want to check your name, address, and phone number to ensure that they’re displayed consistently in every single listing. Your business listing on Google should be identical to your firm’s address on the website, and so forth. Every variation costs you valuable reputation points from Google, knocking you down in the rankings.
Remember, choose reputable directories and get good listings, not just any available listings. Google knows how to check for quality and that counts far more than anything else these days.
Building your interior design firm’s local SEO strategy is a big effort. To make sure that you capitalize on all the leads it brings in, you’ll need to invest in a 24/7 answering service, as well as other systems, that can help you streamline and manage all of these leads and more. Partner with the dedicated virtual receptionists at Smith.ai and you’ll get all of that, including assistance with lead intake, appointment scheduling, and even the outreach campaigns to drive business in the first place.