How to create local business content that converts


With the rise of AI-generated content, Google is cracking down on low-quality, auto-generated copy in favor of high-quality, human-written content from real experts.

This creates an opportunity for local businesses to stand out by producing authentic, helpful information that resonates with their audience and builds trust.

This article covers strategies for creating localized business content that converts, such as:

  • Providing transparent pricing details.
  • Offering DIY tips and tutorials.
  • Spotlighting area events and recommendations.
  • Incorporating video marketing.
  • Leveraging forums like Reddit.
  • Managing reviews.
  • Continuously updating outdated pages.

The rise of forums in the SERPs

Forums are some of the most heavily human-moderated content on the web. Engaging on forums can be a great way to help people get to know your brand, but tread lightly.

As an active forum user and employee of a company that owns a forum, I can confidently say that forum moderators generally have zero tolerance for self-promotional content or blatantly false information. In a world of fabricated social media reactions and fake reviews, forums are among the best places to get honest, unbiased, sales-free advice. 

It looks like Google has taken note and is working to decide how to reward that in the age of over-produced, AI-heavy content.

While Reddit may be the most obvious forum example, we’re seeing increases in forum rankings and traffic across various verticals and industries. From tech to automotive, legal, home services, healthcare and everything in between, forums are gaining popularity.

Dig deeper: Google to replace perspectives filter with forums filter

Position your brand as the expert

People prefer to do business with brands they know, like and trust. The larger the purchase, the more important these factors are.

Building relationships and earning trust are key to earning lasting relationships with customers.

One of the best ways to stand out and get the attention of both customers and Google is to have content that sets you apart from the competition.

Location-specific, trustworthy, authority content can help boost visibility in the SERPs, increase user trust and bring in leads for your business.

Provide people with the information they’re looking for. Keep it visually appealing and easy to navigate.

Provide helpful information

Cost and price info 

This is something that business owners tend to push back on, but Google loves data. Including helpful information like pricing details helps boost rankings and may even earn you a featured snippet.

Our tests continue to prove that optimizing for cost keywords improves ranking, traffic and most importantly, conversions.

People want to know what they can expect before they pick up the phone. You don’t need to provide exact numbers, but giving people an idea helps them set expectations, which saves you time and money in the long run. 

Offer DIY info and tutorials

Incorporating DIY content is another great way to boost rankings, traffic and conversions.

You don’t have to give away your secrets, but give your customers helpful tips on things they can do themselves to save time and money. 

Look at location-based queries in Google Search Console for ideas on what people are already looking for.

  • Electricians can share how to test and change out smoke detectors or light switches.
  • Plumbers can show people how to unclog their bathroom sink or stop a toilet from running.
  • HVAC companies can provide tips for changing furnace filters.

This helps instill trust in your brand, position you as an authority in your industry and remind your customers that you’re there to help, even when you’re not directly profiting from it.

When it’s time for a big job, you’ll be at the top of their mind because they already know and trust you.

Share area recommendations and events

We see success with “best of” and “top” content lists for neighborhoods and communities, area guides that review restaurants or family-friendly activities and timely information like festivals and holiday events.

Showing your customers that you’re local and actively involved in the community reinforces your trustworthiness and that your brand consists of real people in the real world.

Dig deeper: How to create local content that builds trust and drives sales

Incorporate video into your strategy

In an age of AI-generated content, people want to be able to see that you’re real. Why not show them with video? 

Tutorials, helpful tips, fun things to do in your local community and fun “about us” videos are just a few ways you can utilize video to engage your audience. 

Show them who you are and what you’re about to help increase your brand’s expertise, authoritativeness and trust with your audience.

We started sharing regular video content for our brand about a year ago and have seen great results.

Incorporate video into your strategyIncorporate video into your strategy

Dig deeper: Video content guide: Why you should start creating videos now (plus examples)

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Clean up your content

Don’t be afraid to update, edit or even remove old or outdated content.

Just like no one wants to see your employees show up to a job in an old vehicle, using dated techniques or looking unkempt, your website needs to be updated and maintained to stay with the times.

Content pruning

Remove pages that aren’t working for you. Every page on your site should have a job. If a page is not performing, it should be revamped or removed. 

After discovering more than 50 repetitive pages with thin content on this site, we removed the pages and redirected the URLs to pages with more valuable (and helpful) information, and we were happy to see positive results:

Results of content pruningResults of content pruning

Dig deeper: Improving or removing content for SEO: How to do it the right way

Update old blog posts 

Instead of publishing a new post every week that will lose relevance almost immediately and end up in the blog roll graveyard, try regularly refreshing an evergreen page. 

Share local events for the month, top things to do for summer or other timely area info that people will be looking for. This appeals to everyone in the local community, further building your brand’s know, like and trust factor. 

These posts typically rank well and perform consistently, quickly becoming a local authority on “things to do in” the location.

Will it be direct conversions? No. But neither is the first visit to your home page, that one Facebook post or a real estate listing feed. Investments as large as real estate and many home service offerings rarely convert on the first click. 

Take time to nurture your audience and build a strong, authoritative reputation in your community. You’ll earn personal referrals from community members, carrying far more weight with potential buyers.

It works.

Results of updating old blog posts Results of updating old blog posts 

Update, measure, evaluate, adjust, measure, repeat

The only constant in SEO is change. Expect to make adjustments to your site structure and content as things change, just as you would update or redecorate an office. 

Remember the styles that were so hot 30 years ago? What performed awesome in 1994 is just not going to hit the same way in 2024.

Website content will never be “set it and forget it.” You need to track and measure the results of your efforts continually.

Evaluate success, make changes, track and measure. This cycle will ensure success both in the SERPs and in your conversion rates.

Warning: Things that might hurt you

Negative reviews

Be aware of review trends. Reviews are essential to the customer experience.

Higher-star reviews result in higher click-through rates in the local pack, per a BrightLocal study.

Dig deeper: How to get reviews for local SEO: The must-do list

Political landmines

It’s an election year. Be careful. People make everything political, even seemingly mundane things. 

When this particular review was brought up to Google Business Profile, they actually decided that these types of reviews would be classified as politically charged and thus against their guidelines, so it was removed. 

We don’t often see too many wins like this on the review side, so if your business was impacted by these types of reviews, definitely reach out to Google Business Profile support about it. 

GBP review - Political commentGBP review - Political comment

Leaning too heavily on AI

Let AI assist, but don’t hand it the keys. Remember, AI is only as smart as the information it is fed. 

ChatGPT and other generative AI platforms are not always accurate. Use AI as a tool,  then let your brain determine what is good and what needs a rewrite or correction. We have seen instances where AI tools have fabricated information to fill in blanks on queries. 

Always verify information before you publish it, and make sure to remove erroneous verbiage, inaccurate information or anything else that doesn’t serve your audience.

Remember, your competitors are being served the same information as you. What you do with this information is where you will stand out or fall behind.

Ignoring forums

As Google continues to move toward focusing on real, authentic content to combat AI, we will likely continue to see forums and other user-generated content (UGC) rank well. This can be great, or it can take you down.

Reddit is currently a trusted source of information for users. If it’s important to users, it’s important to Google. 

Tread carefully here because a forum as powerful as Reddit can make or break your brand. 

Dig deeper: How to build an E-E-A-T strategy for local SEO

Opinions expressed in this article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Search Engine Land. Staff authors are listed here.

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