Freelancers often try to be the big fish. We don’t want to restrict our abilities to get work, so we tend to lean in on service areas, trying to sound bigger than we are, and more. This includes having an almost obsessive fear of admitting to our local area. We tend to think that somehow, we’re limiting our opportunities to get employed as freelancers by our clients.
But as Kate Toon points out in the seminar, owning your own patch can have some great advantages for all kinds of freelancers.
Some key summary points that came from Kate’s talk on local SEO for freelancers include:
- Google wants you to use your address. The privacy hang ups we have as freelancers (e.g. using our address on our websites or Google My Business) are generally an overreaction. People can and do find out where we are based on a variety of different sources. Adding one more doesn’t change that fact.
- Saying local names ad nauseum won’t help you. Google released an update called Pigeon (as in homing Pigeon I assume?) that makes evidence of that local SEO being used well and effectively – and truthfully- is paramount. That means the good old days of saying Sydney all the time if you are not in Sydney won’t get you far.
- Google My Business is your friend in local SEO. It’s this registration that helps set up your business as a truly local one. Think about how you can use the many features on Google My Business to support your local SEO endeavours. Experiment with sales, promotions, content and more
- Treat the lack of local freelancers as a positive. Google looks for the people to give the searcher within a radius that expands to include more and more area if it cannot find what it needs. By adding yourself as the Windang copywriter, you may also find yourself top of the pops in Port Kembla, Shellharbour, and beyond.
- A correct local range is a positive experience. You’re meant to grow your range. Not game the system to trick Google searches. Besides, if someone expects the Hornsby vet when their pet is experiencing an emergency and finds they are actually located in Gosford, it adds distrust for Google and the business in question.
- Want to know what’s in your local area? Use incognito search and look for the kind of freelance service you offer in your local area.
- Your contact page is a great local anchor. Think about what you can do to optimise your contact page to support those moments where people may be searching for “content writer near me” or whatever your field may be
- Use local SEO as an opportunity to build relationships with local businesses. Kate made some fantastic suggestions related to giving directions based on local landmarks. Suggest and name the local coffee shop for your meetings. Give local love to the businesses you walk past and visit each and every week. It’s not only great local SEO, it’s also great relationship building!
The Freelance Jungle is now experimenting with Kate’s advice with a focus on our headquarters in Windang via the contact page. I will let you know what comes of it!
Want to know more about Kate? Catch her at https://www.katetoon.com/