Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Tips for Local Business Owners

As the owner of a local business, your best customers likely live among your community in your hometown. While your business may be local, many of your potential customers likely find you by first going out on the web and conducting a quick search online. With so many people starting their search for products and services on the web, businesses with carefully planned marketing strategies are the ones that quite literally will rise to the top, being returned at the top of online search results.

One of the most important digital strategies to address is your website’s Search Engine Optimization (SEO). The goal of your SEO is to help ensure that your business appears in front of potential customers at the time when they are searching for your product or service. A well-developed and implemented SEO strategy will help boost your visibility with potential customers and drive business to your company. As a local business, it is important to craft your SEO so that your company not only appears within your products or industry but also as a top local option for customers.

The success your users have on your site and your growing online presence will add to your website’s ranking over time. The most effective SEO techniques are a work in progress, so as you build your SEO be sure to add tools that will allow you to measure and assess results. This way you can continue to refine your techniques and boost your presence online.

There are countless numbers of digital strategies and SEO tools that can get your site noticed. To give you a sense of the techniques available, we have described a few key ones below. We can put a plan together to fit your needs and to help you reach your goals.

Some key local SEO strategies to consider-

  1. Check your listings
    • Google My Business Profile
      It is important to have a complete and relevant Google My Business Profile. Once you set up your listing, the business categories you choose give Google an indication of who you are and what your business is about. Clearly determining your business categories and integrating them into your Google profile and business listings can speed up the process of gaining a good search engine position.
    • Name, Address, Phone (NAP) listings around the web
      Check your business listing around the web to make sure that you have a complete and accurate listing on authoritative sites such as Yelp and the Yellow Pages. Make sure your NAP is consistent, matching exactly across all sites including your own. For example, a phone number should match – (704) 555-5555 should not be mixed with 704-555-5555.
  2. Build quality and compelling content
    • On your site
      Search engines used to favor key word density, leading writers to stuff their sites with words but not content. These days search engines favors writing for readers. Content should address questions your readers could have and answer them as thoroughly, accurately and definitively as possible. When readers find good information on our site and stay instead of back clicking, the search engines read your site as having authority on your topic area and this enhances your position.
    • On sites pointing back to yours
      Another way to build your website’s authority is to have other websites offering links back to your site. When other sites direct visitors to your sites, it tells the search engines that people find your information valuable. In addition to links, authentic reviews of your business and products can increase your SEO rankings.
  3. Check your specs
    • Website speed optimization, URL structure, heading tags, image optimization…
      These and other technical details can interfere with the best performance of your website. A fully optimized site will be read more easily by the search engines and will be favored over sites with technical issues that could present problems for users

Track Your Results
By installing analytics or tracking programs, you can collect information about your website’s visitors so you can learn more about their experience – how they got to you, where they went on your site, etc. The data on your visitors can provide valuable information about your customers and the products and services that in which they are most interested. Google Analytics and Facebook Pixel are two tools that can provide helpful tracking information on how your business and your website are performing on the web.

Let’s Talk
Bellaworks is a full-service digital strategy company. We can custom design a website optimization plan that can help you meet your business goals.

Posted in SEO

viaDirect Solutions

Healthcare Intelligence Delivered.

viaDirect is a healthcare market intelligence and data analytics company. Nothing is more powerful than data. And nobody provides better access to market data, referral trending activity and healthcare industry benchmarks like viaDirect. Utilizing our analytics web portals, viaDirect empowers clients with the analytical benchmarks and market intelligence needed to improve gross margins, develop smarter marketing strategies, and analyze acquisition opportunities.

Ever-Changing Industry

With the ever-changing healthcare industry, solutions offered by viaDirect are more critical than ever. It’s a challenging time for the healthcare industry and the more information you have access to, the deeper your understanding will be of the market and how you need to adapt. The deliverables from viaDirect are customizable to your needs and easy to use and understand. Their services put you one step ahead of the competition.

Help businesses succeed – that’s what we do

Just like viaDirect, Bellworks works with your business to help you succeed and grow. Working with viaDirect, we provided a range of services from logo, branding and custom web design to ongoing SEO and marketing techniques to help get their word out. We enjoyed working with viaDirect and we’re happy to announce their website launch! Go check it out.

Effortless Entertaining

Often times we build business solutions in stages. Effortless Entertaining is a vision by DeeDee Dalrymple that helps her clients in the often overwhelming and stressful process of entertaining. The first stage is to get her ideas and presence online. The next stage will focus on integrating the Effortless Entertaining guide into something she can offer through her website. In addition to the guide, you can also join the Effortless community to serve as a reference for inspiration and ideas to entertaining.

We are happy to work with DeeDee and help build a website that will grow her community of entertainers. Give Effortless Entertaining a look!

The Packhouse restaurant is coming to Charlotte

Exciting times for Treehouse Kitchen as they roll out another Charlotte-based restaurant location. The Packhouse will serve up classic Southern food in its unique rustic atmosphere. Designed to feel like the old barns used to dry tobacco leaves, the restaurant features classic barn wood and tin from top to bottom.

The Packhouse is a new addition to Treehouse Kitchen’s restaurants that include, The Mayobird and the Summit Room. All sites designed by Bellaworks.

We have launched another site – Bistany Design

Based in Charlotte, NC, Bistany Design is an award-winning design center that focuses mainly on kitchen and bath remodeling but also works on other living areas within the home. They cater to a wide range of expertise such as cabinetry design, architecture design and millwork. Caren Bistany, the founder and principal at Bistany Design, has over 25 years of experience in the field and together with her design associate, Tracy Gales. They have been remodeling the South East for many years.

Caren first came to us wanting a redesign of her whole website. She wanted to showcase her work and the people she works with in Charlotte, mainly the cabinetry. We worked closely on the “Our Work”, “Cabinetry & Showroom” and “Before & After” sections of the website to reflect Bistany’s style and attention to detail. We showcased the other companies and products that Bistany works with and made sure that everything was easily accessible for visitors to her website.

Working with Caren and Bistany Design was great! We love supporting small local businesses and help them to succeed by creating a website that not only reflects their company but is also easy for customers to navigate.

Stewart Cooper Newell Architects

Gastonia’s own Stewart Cooper Newell Architects came to us to help revamp their website which included fire stations, law enforcement, and corporate. With such unique clientele, Stewart Cooper Newell Architects wanted their websites to not only emulate their work but also showcase their sleek design skills and attention to detail.

Accomplishments

SCN Architects have had many accomplishments since 1971 and thus a lot of portfolio items and pages scattered throughout. With so much information, it’s easy to get lost in the confusion and pass over information intended to be front and center. Fire stations and law enforcement units are their main projects and they wanted to figure out a way to highlight their great work.

Our Approach

We thought that with so much content the solution should be simple! We divided up their work into three separate websites – Fire Stations, Law Enforcement, and Corporate. Their sites are now easy to navigate and locate whatever it is you’re looking for. We highlighted their achievements, their sustainability commitment and much much more.

We used Flexbox to create the static left sidebar on all pages throughout the websites. Flexbox allowed us to style the left sidebar the same way throughout the websites, whether in tablet mode, on a mobile device or on a desktop, the design will stay the same. Take a look and let us know what you think.

First Presbyterian Church Charlotte

First Presbyterian Church of Charlotte is located in the heart of modern Uptown and now has a website to match. First Presbyterian came to us with the intention to upgrade their website and the goal of broadening their outreach. Their original website had a ton of valuable information for their parishioners but often got lost in the clutter of their many web pages.

The solution:

We worked with First Presbyterian Church of Charlotte to get an understanding of exactly what they wanted and came up with a clean, crisp, and modern look. We eliminated a lot of their existing web pages and combined them into two main areas : I’m New and Now @ FPC. We also kept their four main categories (Worship, Learn, Serve, and Care) and focused on creating a pleasant experience for their new and returning parishioners.

Take a look

Secure your site with an SSL or Security Certificate

When Google offers recommendations for your website, website owners should take notice. Recently, Google announced that they will start marking sites without https sites as, non-secure. If your site doesn’t currently utilize an SSL, you should. Secure your site with an SSL Security Certificate today.

What do you look for?

Look up at the address bar in your browser. What do you see? Do you see this?
site with ssl

 

Or this?
Not secure

Moving towards a more secure web

In an effort to make browsing and sharing data on the web more secure, Google is changing the way it marks non-secure sites. In the past, it has had a “neutral” indicator when sites are not using https. Now it will explicitly label these sites as, “non-secure”. For now, it’s a subtle warning as Google hopes to convince people to secure their site. But they make it very clear that they will start to change the way a site is marked non-secure. If you don’t secure your site, your visitors may soon see a warning like this:

Not secure

 

 

 

 

Secure your site

It’s pretty easy to secure your site and we can help. It starts with issuing a certificate for your domain on your site’s server. Then, we make sure everything in the code uses https for any resources. That’s it in a nutshell; your connection from the server to a visitor’s computer will be encrypted.

In an age of internet spam and hackers wanting to cause harm to your site, you don’t want your visitors wondering if it’s safe to visit your site. Secure your site today!

Treehouse Kitchen

Treehouse Kitchen, who owns two restaurants in Charlotte, approached us to design websites for two new restaurants that will open this spring. While discussing how to creatively build the new locations, Treehouse decided it wanted to go ahead and update the websites for it’s two existing locations, The Mayobird and The Summit Room.

We often get requests to re-do websites that the client has trouble updating. Often times they are in WordPress using a commercial theme that tries to cater to thousands of different customers with different needs. We call this unneeded bloat. We build all our sites with only what you the client need and nothing more.

We’ll save the new locations for another time but they sound amazing! And if you’ve ever tried the Mayobird or the Summit Room, we know they will be.