We all know now that search engine optimization — affectionately known as SEO in the internet marketing world — is one of the most important parts of any advertising campaign. All SEO is, is a series of practices that help websites rank more highly in the search engine results, and it’s cited as one of the most effective forms of lead generation. Part of good SEO is local SEO, which is important for most small businesses. There is, however, one thing that could be really messing with your SEO.

What is local SEO, again?
If you need a refresher, that’s okay. Local SEO is a little different from national SEO. We know that SEO is going to help a website rank higher, but local SEO focuses on local listings. Local is essential. When people (read: your potential customers) use a search engine to look up a product or service in their area, you want them to come across your website. This is where local comes in. At least 50% of local searches take place on mobile devices, and over 75% of people don’t scroll past the first page of results. Making sure your business is on that page is the goal, but there’s one thing that all the SEO experts say could be tripping you up: inconsistency.

What is NAP, and why does it need to be consistent?
There’s one thing that can completely derail the effectiveness of local SEO, and it’s your business’s NAP. What’s a NAP? It’s essentially just the basic information that people are looking for when they search for a business: the name, address, and phone number. Since search engines want to show users the most reliable information, businesses that have inconsistent listings are not going to qualify as good results. If you outsource, ask your local SEO services company to check and make sure your listings are consistent, whether that info is on Google, Yelp, or any other service-listing website.

Do you have any questions about local SEO, or on how to make sure your NAP is consistent? Feel free to ask us in the comments section below.