Local Link Building For Multi-Location Businesses
Link building can be a painful, time-consuming process and what’s more, you can actually be penalized for trying too hard. Even so, link building is a critical facet of your local marketing strategy. Links have long been a valuable trust signal for Google. They help to build out the online footprint and improve the rankings and visibilities of each of your locations.
How can you facilitate healthy, natural link building across your hundreds or thousands of locations? At the local level, it’s all about relationships. To clarify, the connections and endorsements you receive from within your local community tell Google and other search engines that you’re an active, valuable member of that community. This is especially important for brands, whose efforts at the national and regional level don’t trickle down in search the same way they do in brand awareness, for example.
Certainly, this isn’t new or earth-shattering. Rather, it’s important to take a step back and reevaluate your local SEO tools and strategy regularly against the basics and best practices. Use these link building ideas to inspire your local managers and franchisees, making sure they’re taking advantage of local linking opportunities wherever they exist.
1. Local Meet-Ups
Every local meet-up needs a place to meet. Local business owners, managers, and franchisees can host or sponsor these meetups and see about getting a link back to the local website from the meetup page and events listings.
2. Event Sponsorships
Sponsoring local races, festivals and other events creates brand visibility and goodwill in the community. Look for opportunities to sponsor events that are promoted online, and don’t be afraid to ask organizers in your sponsorship negotiations to ensure that there is a link back to your location’s website.
3. Local Charities
Volunteering alongside staff for a local charity can be a great team building exercise, as well as a link building opportunity. You might also consider supporting a local charity in other ways, such as matching employee donations, or hosting a food drive in your location.
4. Local Blogs
Are there influential bloggers or social media personalities in your local markets? Have your locations appeal to them with complimentary product or services. While they cannot ask for a link, it’s just good marketing to give influencers access and opportunities to enjoy what you have to offer. The prospect of valuable links being generated in the content those influencers create is a welcome offshoot.
5. Local Clubs and Organizations
Encourage your local managers, owners or franchisees, and service area managers to get involved in local clubs and organizations. For example, consider the Lion’s Club, Knights of Columbus, United Way and others. Moreover, you might opt to make specific recommendations of organizations whose values align with those of your brand.
6. Local Business Associations
Have your locations join their Local Marketing Association, the American Marketing Association, Chamber of Commerce and other business associations. This is so they’ll make valuable contacts within the community and earn backlinks from the location’s profile on each site.
7. Neighborhood Watch Sites
Look for opportunities to sponsor Nextdoor groups and neighborhood watch websites. And while you participate in local forums, ensure that a link back to the location’s website is included in your profile.
8. Niche Business Sites
Niche groups and organizations can be local link building opportunities and also offer great networking. Look for highly focused groups that align with your company’s values, or those that have similar audiences, such as women in technology, pet owners, or classic car owners, for example.
Above All Else, Be Authentic.
Finally, be authentic in your dealings. You probably want your local representatives to be involved in their local communities anyway. You can also help them reap the greatest value from these interactions and investments by encouraging them to examine each opportunity through the local link building lens and local search optimization, as well.
Empower your local managers, owners and franchisees to take control of their location data and improve local visibility from search to sale. Local Manager gives your locations the tools they need to support the national brand from the local level.
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