Guest Post By Rick The Pick

Importance Of SEO | A Locksmiths Guide

With and Thomson Local virtually at deaths door it has never been so important to get your locksmith business advertised online.

It was announced earlier in the week that Hibu (The new name behind Yellow Pages) has fallen into administration. That’s both Thomson Local and Yell in trouble within the last six months! Having already ditched both of these companies this year I have some peace of mind knowing my money wasn’t wasted yet again on these desperate pair.

Having learned to build websites early on and learning about SEO and how Google ranks websites I have always invested time in keeping on top of my internet presence for the day the physical directories go under. If you haven’t already taught yourself the basics of HTML and how to manage a simple webpage for your locksmith business it’s now the time to pull your finger out and learn! SEO or Search Engine Optimisation however can be a little harder to learn and still remains a dark art to the majority of people.

How does SEO help me get customers for my locksmith business?

The algorithm that Google uses to determine the relevance of any website to the term used by the searcher depends on a massive number of variables. Google ‘crawls’ the internet, ranking different sites based on the text displayed on the sites, the referals from other sites and their relevance to yours, the outbound links from your site and the relevance to the reader. All in all a good website will be useful to the end user and display the information required both honestly and efficiently.Therefore a locksmiths website that contains minimal content and little or no network of referral websites will generally rank much lower than a well optimised one.

Generally the way in which a successful locksmith advertises online is to have a good web presence in all of the geographical areas in which they cover. You may have noticed that all the usual national locksmith franchises have jumped on this pretty hard and are aggressively hitting every area they can cover to grab as much work for their investors as possible. The competition to rank well for main city areas has become intense and you really need a well rounded and established webpage to get anywhere near the top 3 positions. This is now filtering down to the sub areas and smaller districts as companies are pushed off page one for the main areas.

For example; A locksmith in Sheffield would have a main landing page for Sheffield. Then sub pages for each district of the area: Penistone, Stocksbridge, Barnsley… etc etc all with their own separate dedicated page optimised for those particular keywords. Simply trying to produce a single page which ranks well for all of your areas can be extremely tricky and would take a lot of time and experimentation to work well. You can in fact go one step further with this concept and register unique domain names for each area several times over, however it is important to keep your content fresh and unique! Duplicate and similar pages will be penalised for being so.

There are other ways to get your locksmith business seen on the internet. Registering your business on Google places is a must as this also calculates your relevance by the distance from the customer searching, although this is becoming less reliable as directory companies such as Yell and Thomson local abuse their power and create false locations for their clients.

Google Adwords is another method which can vary in success depending on the competition in your area. Click fraud is a big turn off for most small business owners though and locksmiths are often priced out of the top listings by larger national companies. Experiment with caution and be very sure of your return on investment before ploughing considerable money into Adwords.

Still struggling with all this SEO business or don’t have the time to invest in this?

Although I do encourage locksmiths to learn this for themselves it is understandable that busier companies or those with very poor computer skills seek to employ a web designer or SEO expert to do it for them. When searching for a company that offers SEO for locksmiths it is important to find one with experience in this competitive field. Price is also important as SEO for locksmiths is a constant battle.

The cost of SEO can vary from £50-£200 a month with very little difference in the results achieved so I would recommend running a permanent campaign at a lower rate than a short, expensive campaign.

I hope this rough insight is of use to you and encourages you to have a go yourselves. You can potentially save thousands of pounds a year!

Rick – Walsall locksmith & Door Repairs.



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