Local SEO used to be easy. A few months ago, all that you needed to do to lack in the seven-pack was smack your category to your Google Places page, go out there, and get a few dozen citations.
With competition heating up, it becomes very important that you use the best tools of the trade to ensure that you’re ranking above your match in the box.
This is by far the best tool you can have in your arsenal. The Local SEO Checklist gives you a simple step-by-step checklist that you can use to track your optimization efforts better.
The most interesting thing about this tool is that it tracks your progress as you go, even if you close your browser and re-open it as long as you don’t clear your browser cache.
The Google Structured Data Testing Tool tells you exactly what content on your website is marked as well as errors that it may find in the way your schema-ed content is marked up.
This is especially useful if you’ve done some work in the past or parts of your website have a schema that you’re not sure is being read and interpreted properly.
The schema creator from RavenTools is a great tool if you’re looking to generate schema without the hassle of having to read through all the documentation over at the Schema.org website.
What really impressed me about this tool was its ease of use. Pretty much anyone can use and operate this tool to generate schema for their website.
This handy toolkit from 51Blocks does multiple Local SEO factor checks at the same time. The tool is very useful for you to automatically check on major factors that affect your performance in Google Local and other directories.
GetListed.org does a scan of your business on the top 12 directories and tells you where you’re listed, as well as information about whether you’re listed accurately in these top directories.
The site also tells you which category you’re listed under as well as whether you have media present on your listings:
Additionally, GetListed also informs you of any errors it finds on the listings it scans
The Synup software scans your business listing on over 100 local directories as well as different review sites to show you how you’re present.
The listings section of the tool shows you a snapshot of how you’re listed across the web:
Additionally, you can drill down to each listing to see exactly how you appear on each website:
The “Reviews” section of the tool shows you reviews from across the web about your business:
FreeReviewMonitoring.com is an excellent new service that monitors your reviews on all the major review sites for free on a daily basis. It also sends out an email to you every day with recent reviews as they are crawled. You can also set up the tool to monitor your competitors’ reviews.
The free version of the Grade.us tool creates a simple review page that you can use to request reviews from your clients.
Getting more reviews is an integral part of Local SEO, and this tool comes in very handy for that. Unfortunately, the free version of Grade.us doesn’t include their review funnel functionality.
Irrespective of the tools you use, you’ll still need to put in the work. Though tools can help you do a more effective job when it comes to Local SEO, they are still not a replacement for good ‘old hard work. You’ll still need to be able to put in the time to ensure that you’re profile is properly optimized and that you’re getting citations from the right places.
Half the battle is won if you can clean up your profile, merge duplicates on Google Maps, and ensure you are listed on at least the top 50 local directories.
We hope these tools were helpful and happy Local SEO-ing!