seo for manufacturing companies

Local SEO Vs. Organic SEO for Food Manufacturers

If you own a food company or work for one, you already know how important digital marketing is. Search engine optimization (SEO) is one of the most crucial aspects of digital marketing. It can put your products or services on the map.

Once you understand how SEO works, the next important question is figuring out the right SEO practices for your food business. You need to decide what works best for your business – local SEO services vs organic SEO services.

Let us dive right in and learn more about local SEO and its relevance for food companies.

What Is Local SEO?

SEO efforts are aimed at boosting the ranking of your website on organic results. Local SEO is a more geographically focused version of organic SEO.

It is a marketing strategy that improves the visibility of your business in local searches. It helps you reach local customers, especially those that live around your business.

It is a great idea for restaurant operators and other food businesses because it maximizes their chances of being noticed in Google searches.

Local SEO VS Organic SEO

The primary difference between local SEO and organic SEO is the geographical component.

Search engines are smart, and they do a good job of understanding the user’s requirements. When a user looks up something with a location, the engine knows that they have local intent.

In some cases, even when the users do not type out the location, search engines assume local intent based on the nature of the query.

However, when the search engine does not find the query to have a local intent, it is known as organic search. This occurs when the user searches for generic information instead of information that could be specific to a location. 

Regular SEO relies on various factors, such as outbound and inbound links, keywords, grammar, etc. Every time you perform organic searches, the search engine uses these factors to rank and index the results.

If your food business is spread across multiple locations, you should focus on ranking both organically and locally.

The best way to explain this is with an example. If you’re a food distributor, organic SEO can help get more generic traffic to your website, while local SEO can get more location-relevant traffic and hot leads to your website. 

Why Does Your Food Company Need Local SEO?

Anyone who wants to seriously grow their business wishes to attract as many customers as possible. Local SEO does just that.

Since food businesses target specific locations and local customers, it makes sense for them to focus on a local SEO campaign.

Let us look at some of the ways in which a local strategy can be helpful for your food company.

  • Increases your chances of getting found by potential customers when they search for local business options.
  • Increases brand equity for your business.
  • Lets you reach potential local customers on their terms.

Actionable Local SEO Strategies For Food Companies

Here are a few simple ways that boost your local SEO:

  • Integrate relevant keywords on your webpage
  • Focus on the website user experience
  • Create and publish valuable content regularly
  • Claim your local listing on search engines
  • Use Geotags on images
  • Create a contact page with your business name, address, phone number, and other relevant information

We’ll dive into a few of these options even further below. 

Do Local SEO and Organic SEO Practices Affect Each Other?

Yes, there are plenty of instances where promoting your food company locally may boost organic SEO and vice versa.

1. Local Listings & Citations

Businesses can list their information in relevant search engines. This requires you to provide basic details, such as your business’s name, address, phone number, and website.

When you claim your business on such listings, the search engine creates backlinks to your website. Link building is a crucial strategy in organic SEO. The number and quality of links that your website has is a common ranking factor among search engines. 

Local listings, when done right, also act as citations. A citation is a reference to your business’s name, address, and phone number (NAP).

Beyond just being handy information for a user to have, NAP references also count towards your online authority by search engines. A full or partial citation (reference to your NAP information) helps in creating a successful local SEO strategy. You might think that citations can only come from your website or local directories. Those are only some of the places that can help call out your NAP. 

You can also build a consistent NAP citation in other places online as well: 

  • Online Q&A forums
  • Social media profiles
  • Forum signature
  • Press releases
  • Guest bylines and guest blogs
  • Video and image descriptions

Don’t worry if your citations don’t link back to your website, that still counts as good SEO. Things to keep in mind for a healthy citation strategy: 

  • Keep your information as consistent and correct as possible across the web
  • Get as many citations as possible on different, high-quality websites
  • Avoid duplicate listings on the same website 

You should aim to have your business listings on high-quality websites. This is important not just for citations but also for links to your business. The more they appear online, the more credibility they provide to the search engines, both from a local and organic SEO point of view. 

2. On-Site Local SEO

On-site SEO practices, such as writing locally focused blog posts or updating your business address, could enhance your local SEO as well.

Good quality content is one of the most vital aspects of organic SEO. If you make your content locally relevant, you can help both your local and organic SEO efforts.

Another good practice of on-site local SEO is using schema markup. Schema markup essentially allows search crawlers to read, understand, and decipher your website more accurately.

Schema markup, when used through the lens of local SEO, can drive a lot of relevant traffic to your website. 

A search request that is local in nature is most often looking for a citation, i.e. your business’ name, phone number, address, or open hours 

Incorporating local schema markup into your website’s HTML can help improve your rich snippets, while also helping your business get picked up by Google’s knowledge graphs. Just make sure that you highlight your NAP, and other relevant information that a customer might find useful (i.e. phone number, hours of operation, where to place orders, etc.)

Having good schema markup also helps your website appear in Google’s local three-pack. This is a highly valuable piece of web real estate.

That’s not all! Good local schema markup is full of useful structured data, which helps your website pop up in voice searches too.

Best practices food companies should follow for local and organic SEO

1. Engage in regular content marketing

Content is king when it comes to good SEO. Good, relevant content that addresses your customers’ pain points draws in a lot of valuable traffic and keeps this traffic engaged. 

Your customers are constantly seeking answers to their questions, and creating content such as blogs, infographics, eBooks, and videos, helps them get answers.

Industry-specific content can draw in leads that are interested in your food products company, thus acting as a lead generation engine too. 

2. Encourage your customers to write reviews

A good rule of thumb – the number of reviews for your food business on Google Maps is just as important, if not more important, as the average rating of those reviews. 

More reviews on a regular basis not only build trust with new customers, but they also send the right signals to Google that people are actively engaged with your business. 

These reviews show up on Google Maps and also your business listings on the search results page, making it extremely important for SEO.

Encourage your satisfied customers to leave more reviews and aim for a 4.0+ average rating. A good SEO agency can definitely help build outreach campaigns to drive more reviews to your business listing pages. 

3. The secret sauce of link building

Getting other websites to link to your food services business helps with SEO by signaling to search engines that your content is high-quality and worthy of linking to. . 

To get more links for to your website beyond making business listings, you should also:

  • Create a social media account
  • Create content with food reviewers and influencers
  • Create backlinks from the photos that you share with food bloggers and journalists
  • Create more descriptive anchor text for the link (e.g. ‘best pizza place in Toronto’ is much better than ‘click here’)

When it comes to elevating your online presence and driving leads to your food product company – link building, reviews, and content marketing can reap dividends.

And you can also easily rely on a good food industry SEO consultant or agency to take this workload off of your in-house marketing team. 

Wrapping Up

As a food company, you should pay attention to both organic and local SEO. Effective strategies will increase your exposure to local customers while simultaneously improving how a search engine ranks and indexes your website.

Local SEO is often considered more important as it places your business right in front of local customers when they actively search for products or services in their area. It is important to remember that local and organic SEO are complementary to each other. 

If you’re a food company looking to invest in digital marketing services that can significantly boost your SEO efforts, reach out to us for actionable solutions!