As a franchisee, you want to do everything you can to make your business stand out. To that end, you’re probably wondering how to boost your online presence and attract more customers. In many cases, the answer is SEO.
SEO, or search engine optimization, can help you improve your website’s ranking and visibility in search engines like Google and Bing. It’s just one important strategy business owners use to market their brands. As a franchisee, you’ll have to consider your specific goals, challenges, and opportunities when implementing your marketing strategy. Here are some tips for using SEO packages as a franchisee.
Create a Consistent Brand
Being part of a franchise means you can leverage the reputation and recognition of an established brand. Your online presence should reflect the brand’s identity and values. Creating a consistent brand image across all your digital channels, including your website, social media, and online directories is essential for doing so.
As you work on your marketing strategy, you can keep things consistent by following the brand guidelines provided by the franchisor. Guidelines can be very strict depending on the brand. These guidelines often include the fonts, logos, colors, and taglines you can use, as well as the kind of language and brand voice you should utilize. Always stay in compliance with these guidelines to ensure you don’t mislead customers or breach your franchisee agreement.
Focus on Locals
A good way to get started with local marketing is to claim and verify your Google My Business listing. If you’ve never heard of Google My Business, you should become familiar with it. This free platform allows you to manage exactly how your business appears in a Google search and on Google Maps. You may have used it yourself when searching for a business nearby based on certain criteria. You use this platform to make sure the information about your business is correct. You can add photos, videos, hours, and addresses. If you’re a restaurant franchisee, you may also want to include a downloadable menu.
Explore the review sites and directories that would be most helpful to your business. These are websites that customers can go to for information and ratings about local businesses. Some well-known examples include TripAdvisor, Yelp, and Angi’s List, but there are others for specific industries, too. Check how you’re listed across these platforms to ensure your information is accurate and consistent. When you see or send emails to customers, encourage them to go to those review websites to leave feedback for your business.
Include Location-Based Keywords
, Location-based keywords are search terms that include the name of your city, state, region, or neighborhood. Even if you work with a national or global brand, you still should target people in your local area. Your local customer base will differ from another franchise in a separate state. In other words, a franchise in Seattle may have a different marketing strategy from one in Miami.
It’s a good idea to include these location-based keywords on your website content itself, in addition to other backend attributes on your website itself, as well as part of your off-site SEO efforts like link-building. A good example would be a coffee shop in Seattle using the keywords “coffee in Seattle” or “best lattes in Seattle.” LinkedIn has reported that “the first result on the first page of Google search results receives 25% of all clicks,” proving how valuable that ranking is. Google wants to deliver the most relevant results to users and Google Search will often assume that you want to find results in your area; so, including geographical info in your keywords can help Google understand context and allow you to rank more readily in local search results. Your digital marketing team will focus on relevant keywords and keyword phrases that emphasize your location.
Make a Unified Content Strategy
Regardless of how much you’ve mastered your local SEO, you need good content for it to work. Focus on adding an engaging editorial calendar for your franchise. To entice people to visit your local business, you need to entertain them and educate them about the services and products you provide. This content can include podcasts, webinars, ebooks, blogs, and articles. It can also include images and videos on your website as well as social media pages.
Communicate with your team about tone. Maybe you’re interested in a snarky persona, or maybe you need a more sensitive voice. You’ll want to craft content that can encourage your potential customers to share and leave comments.
To optimize your results, you need a unified content strategy that aligns with your SEO packages and the goals of your franchise. This strategy should clearly outline whatever content you plan to create and other pertinent details. Know who your local target audience is and understand what they want and what they care about. For example, Starbucks made a huge name for itself when it introduced the Frappuccino, and it’s something the younger demographic tends to enjoy the most; Starbucks knows this and uses this data in its marketing strategy.
Keep NAP Consistent
It’ll be hard for people to find your business if your name keeps changing or your address is different across multiple platforms, so make sure your NAP is consistent. “NAP” stands for name, address, and phone number – the basic information that identifies your business online. Without that consistency, it’ll be hard for customers to find you easily. Search engines won’t be able to verify and rank your business either, so you may end up producing valuable content that’s not ranking well because of a confusing NAP.
Get the Marketing Support Your Franchise Needs
These marketing tips are a great start, but you’ll likely need more robust support through SEO packages for continued growth. With the right SEO strategy and the professionals who know how to manage it, you’ll start to see better local rankings that will translate to more business. With our help, you can boost your online presence and attract more customers through SEO. Contact Digital Current for a consultation today.