One of the advantages of owning a franchise is that you don't need to have business experience to successfully run one. Brand awareness also already exists for this business model, making it easier for you to attract customers and make sales.
However, this doesn’t mean that you shouldn't put in any effort to promote your franchised business.
It's still crucial to optimize for franchise SEO and develop a strategic marketing plan to boost your visibility in your local area and drive more traffic to your store.
In this article, we are going to teach you how to reach new customers online by increasing your visibility for relevant local searches.
Franchise search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of improving your franchised business’ visibility online by listing it on online directories and following SEO best practices.
SEO can put your business in front of searchers who are looking for the products or services you offer or those who are searching for your specific brand.
What’s great about owning a franchise is that brand awareness already exists. All you have to do is to let customers know you’re an option and they’ll most likely choose you over less established brands.
Since you're targeting customers from your local area, go for a local SEO approach. It's similar to franchise SEO but with a local focus. It means you're scaling down your SEO efforts on a hyper-focused local level.
The goal is to attract people within your area because they’re the ones who are likely going to turn into customers.
To achieve this, franchise SEO focuses on doing local SEO optimizations, such as local link building, creating a Google My Business page, and publishing localized content.
Doing this increases your franchised business' organic visibility, which enables you to attract more customers and secure more sales. Every time a user searches for the products or services you offer, your website or listing is the first result they can find.
It's essential to rank high on Google search results because the average user doesn't scroll past the first page of the search engine results pages (SERPs). Ranking leads to increased brand awareness, builds trust, and generates inquiries from potential customers.
Did you know that more than 154 million people use Google Maps each month? Many of these users end up on Google Maps business listings after doing a keyword search.
By listing your franchised business on Google Maps and following other SEO best practices, you can ensure that it appears on top of the Maps results. Ranking high on Google Maps can mean ranking on the first page of Google Search too!
Having higher visibility increases your chances of being discovered by your ideal customers. It boosts the popularity of your business in your area and helps you generate more sales!
However, it’s not enough to just enlist your business. Here are the other things you need to do to rank higher on Google Maps:
Whenever you search for a product or service online, Google will automatically present you with the top three local businesses that are relevant, well-known, and close in proximity to you.
The results will show each business' profile listings, star ratings, and location on Google maps. This is what they call “Google 3-Pack.”
Now, you might be wondering why your franchise still needs to appear in the 3-pack. Ranking in the 3-pack results means receiving five times as many views and twice as many actions.
When people click on the direction to your business, it’s a clear indicator of a user’s intent to buy.
If you want to attract more customers online and drive them to your store, you'll want to optimize for franchise SEO.
To rank for Google 3-Pack, here’s what you need to do:
Another franchise SEO best practice you want to follow is localizing your content. When it comes to franchises, you're usually given marketing materials you can use to promote your branch.
To strengthen this, we suggest you localize the keywords in your captions and hashtags. This is a great way to make these “generic” marketing materials more culturally relevant and appealing to your target audience, allowing you to provide an ideal online brand experience.
When it comes to ads, we suggest you run one targeting the people in your area. You can go for Google or social media ads, depending on what works best for you. If you’re not sure which type of ad you should go for, run them simultaneously. Then, based on the results, go for the one that gets responses from your target customers.
If you have a website dedicated to your specific branch, we suggest that you optimize it for local SEO. This will help your site rank high on the SERPs.
Here’s what you need to do:
After optimizing your website for local franchise SEO, it’ll be easier for you to improve your rankings and generate more local organic traffic.
Your franchised business most likely already has a main social media account. That said, it's still necessary that you create one specifically for your branch. This is how you can keep your customers and audience updated with your business hours, special promos, and other activities specific to your branch.
Using localized keywords and localizing your captions comes in handy. For example, instead of just using #dickeysbbqpit you can make it more specific to your location like #dickeysbbpitFL.
Social media is also a great avenue to share articles where you or your specific branch got featured by local newspapers or magazines.
Let people know that a social media account is specific to your location by adding your address to the page. For example, you can use the name Dickey BBQ Pit FL instead of the generic one.
Citations are mentions of your business name, address, contact number, or website (NAP + W) on the web.
Citations are crucial because they help build credibility for your business online. Search engines consider citations as trust signals, telling them that you’re legit and reliable.
To build citations, all you have to do is list your branch across multiple local business directories. Just make sure that you keep your NAP consistent. No need to add your specific location. 41% of all ranking issues are because of a mismatched NAP.
Aside from local business directories, here are other ways you can build citations:
If the main franchise doesn't have a robust marketing approach that’s helping you get more sales in your local area, don’t be afraid to take matters into your own hands!
Use franchise SEO to boost your branch’s visibility in your location and attract customers within your area. This is one of the best ways to drive traffic to your location and generate more sales!
At Digital Resource, our digital marketing experts and SEO specialists will work with you to create a custom SEO plan that will put your franchised business ahead of your competitors.
Contact us today to start getting more sales online!