Gym Marketing With Local SEO

Local SEO is essential to any gym marketing strategy

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Gym marketing with local SEO is increasingly competitive. Search engines are improving every day at getting you relevant information. These improvements often mean giving you localized results. Searching for a “supermarket” shouldn’t turn up results for supermarkets all the way across the country. The same goes for gyms. The best way to signal to search engines where you are is through a local SEO strategy. This will ensure all of the digital marketing you’re doing for your gym won’t get lost in the haystack.

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1. Start with an audit of you local SEO

Before you begin, you need to know where your gym marketing is starting from. We aren’t going to get into an entire site audit (although it is recommended you do one 2-3 times per year) but we will give you a short of local SEO checks you can make to start seeing results.

Google alone uses over 200 documented ranking factors to determine where your site will display in its results. While a full site audit will uncover other potentially problematic issues with your site, there are a few you can check now that will boost your localized gym marketing efforts.

Onsite:

  • Is the gym name and state in every title tag? Ex. Fresno, CA
  • Is the gym name and address on every page?
  • For multiple locations: do breadcrumbs exist that include State -> City -> location on each page?
  • Do you have geo-targeted anchor text?
  • Is your site fast and mobile friendly?

Offsite local SEO issues are often the biggest stumbling block. Whether you created the profiles or someone created them for you, most are not helping gyms. Profiles that are incomplete or have incorrect information don’t help you and can actually impact your local organic search performance. Tracking down these profiles and either deleting them or updating them will help give your website a local boost and improve your gym marketing. It is most important to be accurate, consistent, and complete!

Offsite:

  • What sites currently list your gym?
  • Are all these listings correct?
  • Is the information on your Google My Business Listing correct and verified?
  • Business listings include categories, address, and other information.
  • Have your Bing Places for Business listing been claimed and verified?
  • Has your Foursquare listing been claimed and optimized?
  • Has your Facebook page been created and optimized?
  • Is your Apple Maps information accurate?
  • Are your images better than other comparable listings?

If you’re looking for some help organizing profiles that exist, check out Localeze or Infogroup. Both sites will scrape the web to show you profiles you may not be able to find otherwise. Make sure you have no more than 1 listing with updated and accurate information on each website.

2. Encourage Reviews from your members

Reviews are another essential element for marketing your gym online and local SEO. A site with numerous reviews (mainly positive reviews) on Google+ can send signals to Google’s search algorithm that your site would be a relevant result for a searcher.

But it doesn’t just end there. Often, third party sites may rank higher than your site. Not to worry, your review strategy should incorporate all sites that may be relevant. Related sites like; Yelp, Foursquare, Facebook, or any other listing that you’re targeting.

One option to helps your gym marketing in this way is to create a page on your site that contains easy to use links to your profile on these sites. Then, you can encourage users to rate your gym via email or social promotion by sending them to one place. Removing the hassle of trying to promote multiple sites and profiles. Lower the barrier and people will help.

A tool to help if you don’t want to make a page for reviewing your gym is Get Five Stars. It will help you generate customer feedback in the form of testimonials and online reviews. All you need is an email to start, and the rest is taken care of by the application.

3. Link Building (The Good Way)

Obviously, the more links that point back to your domain, the higher you’ll be in search results. There are good ways and bad ways to go about this. The bad way is to go to a directory listing site and submit your link. This won’t help and will often hurt your ranking. Instead, focus on quality, contextually relevant links.

  • Optimize your content for social sharing (all those shares help your link relevancy)
  • Get written about in your local papers or magazines.
  • Create comprehensive and relevant review profiles (as mentioned above).
  • Create (and regularly update) other social sites like Digg, Stumbleupon, etc.
  • Leave quality comments on other sites.

When attempting to build links to your site, patience is key. Focus on the sites that are of value to your site. Not every website out there needs your comment or link. Stick only to the relevant, quality sites when creating profiles and commenting.

4. Emphasize Secondary SEO

Sometimes, the sites sitting above you on the search result page just won’t be toppled easily. Not to fear, secondary SEO is here! Secondary SEO is when you utilize the 3rd party sites listed higher than you and optimized to be at the top of their listings.

For instance, if people are looking for “{city} gym reviews” it is likely a site like Yelp ranks at the top. We’ve already discussed that a good Yelp rating will likely help your site’s SEO, but you’ll probably never beat it out for the top spot. Instead, try to appear in the upper part of these review sites. Encourage as many reviews as possible (and hopefully they are five stars). Increasing the number of reviews will help you rise to the top of Yelp reviews, indirectly improving your search ranking. Many niche sites exist, and there are even some that are city specific. Emphasizing reviews (like the above mention) can improve your secondary SEO as well as your primary SEO when marketing your gym online.

Additionally, don’t ignore the non-search result page listings of search engines such as videos and pictures. Images can rank high and are often overlooked by the dominant players. Make sure the image file name, URL, title, and alt text all contain the same keyword, and you’ll have an image search strategy in addition to a text based one.

Gym YouTube marketing can also be an effective strategy to improve search results. Targeting keywords and creating videos can actually land your video on the first page, provided the competition isn’t too high.

Final Thoughts

Successful gym marketing is not something that will be accomplished overnight. Focusing on quality and completeness over quantity will generate more localized result success in the long run. Google knows when you’ve been bad or good, so stick to what works when it comes to localized gym marketing and SEO.





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