Conducting Keyword Research for Local Search Marketing





Blog Date

May 27, 2024


UK, Manchester

Follow us on


Table of Contents

Conducting Keyword Research for Local Search Marketing

The Key to Unlocking Local Search Success

As the founder of an SEO agency in Manchester, I know firsthand how crucial local keyword research is for businesses targeting their local market. It’s the foundation upon which you build a robust local search strategy – one that can propel your company to the top of the search engine results pages (SERPs) and into the hands of eager, ready-to-convert customers.

Let me tell you a story. When I first started my agency, I made the classic mistake of relying on my own assumptions about what my clients’ customers were searching for. “People in Manchester are looking for ‘plumbers near me,’ right?” I’d confidently tell my team. Boy, was I in for a rude awakening.

After diving into proper keyword research, I realized the search landscape was far more nuanced. Sure, “plumbers near me” was a popular term, but we also uncovered a trove of hyper-local keywords like “emergency plumber Manchester city centre” and “plumber Chorlton-cum-Hardy.” These granular, location-specific phrases held the key to dominating the local pack and driving high-intent traffic to our clients’ websites.

From that moment on, I made local keyword research the cornerstone of our local SEO strategy. And the results spoke for themselves – our clients started ranking higher, getting more leads, and seeing a significant uptick in their bottom line.

So, if you’re a local business owner or marketer, let me walk you through the step-by-step process of conducting killer local keyword research. Trust me, it’ll be the best investment of your time and resources.

Step 1: Brainstorm Your Seed Keywords

The first step in your local keyword research journey is to identify your “seed” keywords – the broad, general terms that describe your products, services, and industry. These will serve as the foundation for your research.

Start by making a list of the solutions you offer. For example, if you’re a plumbing company, your seed keywords might include “plumbing services,” “emergency plumbing,” and “drain cleaning.” Then, jot down the specific products and services you provide, like “water heater installation” and “leak detection.”

Don’t forget to include your customers’ pain points and problems, too. What are they searching for when they need your help? “Leaky faucet repair,” “clogged toilet,” and “burst pipe emergency” are all great examples.

Step 2: Incorporate Location-Based Keywords

Now that you have your solution-focused seed keywords, it’s time to inject some local flavor. After all, the whole point of this exercise is to target customers in your specific geographic area.

Start by adding location modifiers like “Manchester,” “Trafford,” and “Salford” to your seed keywords. These explicit local terms will help you uncover keywords with clear local intent.

But don’t stop there. Think about other ways people might search for your business based on their location. Do they use landmarks, neighborhoods, or even zip codes? For instance, “plumbers near Media City UK” or “plumber M16” could be valuable keywords to target.

Step 3: Leverage Keyword Research Tools

Armed with your seed keywords and location modifiers, it’s time to put some powerful tools to work. Semrush’s Keyword Magic Tool is an absolute must-have, with its vast database of keywords and robust filtering capabilities.

Start by plugging in one of your seed keywords and selecting your target country (in this case, the UK). The tool will spit out a treasure trove of related keywords, including many with local intent.

To narrow down to those hyper-local terms, simply add your location modifiers to the “Include keywords” filter. This will surface explicit local keywords like “plumber in Manchester” and “emergency plumber Salford.”

But don’t stop there! Switch those location modifiers over to the “Exclude keywords” filter to uncover implicit local keywords – those that don’t necessarily contain a location but still have clear local intent, like “24-hour plumber” or “affordable plumbing services.”

Step 4: Analyze and Prioritize Your Keywords

Now that you’ve compiled an extensive list of local keywords, it’s time to analyze and prioritize them. The goal is to identify the low-hanging fruit – the keywords that you have the best chance of ranking for in your local market.

BrightLocal’s Keyword Research tool can be a huge help here. Simply enter your target keyword, and it will give you detailed insights on search volume, competition, and ranking difficulty – all tailored to your specific location.

Focus on keywords with a manageable Keyword Difficulty (KD) score, high search volume, and low competition. These are the gems that will provide the biggest bang for your buck in terms of local search visibility.

Step 5: Dig Into Your Competitors’ Strategies

No local keyword research is complete without a deep dive into your competition. After all, they’re likely vying for the same customers you are, and understanding their strategies can give you a significant edge.

Start by searching for some of your target keywords in Google and taking a close look at the top-ranking results. Who are your main competitors, and what keywords are they targeting? You can also use Semrush’s Domain Overview and Keyword Gap tools to uncover the keywords your rivals are ranking for, but you’re not.

This intel can be invaluable in helping you identify additional high-potential keywords to target and ensure your local SEO strategy is as comprehensive as possible.

Putting It All Together

Local keyword research may seem like a daunting task, but trust me, it’s worth the effort. By taking the time to deeply understand the search behavior of your target customers, you’ll be able to create a laser-focused local SEO strategy that drives real, measurable results for your business.

And as an added bonus, don’t forget to optimize your Google Business Profile with your newly discovered local keywords. This is a surefire way to boost your visibility in the local pack and get your business in front of ready-to-buy customers.

So, what are you waiting for? Start uncovering the local search gold mine and watch your Manchester-based business soar to new heights!

Copyright 2023 © MCRSEO.ORG