Every month, 1 Million in the US find a hair salon via Google. Here’s what you can do to improve your salons search engine position

Many salon owners and managers ask what are the key factors in getting their salons website better rankings on Google search results through improving how their website is optimised for search engines, commonly called SEO (search engine optimization).

Today, Belliata Salon Software will share one of the most important our tips on one of the most important aspects to getting good SEO rankings for your salon, barbers or spa.

Do you want to know what one of the key criteria are for getting higher up on Google?

  1. On page Optimization

Making sure that your website has all the right ingredients and secret sauce which Google loves. We will cover this in another post.

  1. Social Proof

Google loves it when people are sharing your website content on the, likes of Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and Google Plus.

But the biggest key factor to improving the likeliness of getting your salon, barbers or spa higher up on search engine results are links from other websites BUT as your a local business they are special links…

These links and listings are called…..

  1. Citations

Guest what?

Many of them are FREE for you to add your business too!

What are citations you may ask?

Citations are information on quality websites which shows your business details, such as salon name, address, telephone number or website or a combination of all of them and it is ESSENTIAL that these match the details you show on your website.

You may have heard the term Local SEO when searching for how to improve your rankings in search engines.

Fundamentally local SEO is driven by citations and ensuring your website is linked to quality websites with good authority in the eyes of Google.

What are good examples of websites where you can put your business citations?

Well you have all heard of Google, and its product called Google My Business, this is THE most important one to do, there is also Yelp and Citysearch but we will give you 12 more to add your business to later on.

Let’s remind ourselves of what citations are…

Citations are mentions of your salon name, address, website and telephone number or all of them together (this often called NAP in search engine marketing worlds…ie Name Address Phone) – they don’t even have to have a link to your website to qualify and Yellow Pages is a good example.

Remember they have to match across all of the websites and match the details on your own website.

Salon Name

Address including Zip Code

Website, always add / (i.e. .com/ ) at the end of your URL

Telephone Number

We have put together 18 of the best websites to add your citations to from our experience and from other great sources around the Internet, such as MOZ – online visibility tools and Whitespark – specialist software for local SEO.

Don’t forget to check-out our 101 Salon Marketing Tips blog post for other great salon marketing ideas.

So here it goes….

If you are going to do any of these today; do the top 5 at least…

1. Google My Business

What more needs to be said about Google. This is the most important listing you need for your business……end of!From our own

From our own research 60% of salons had not claimed or managed their listing properly. 86% of search for hair salons, barbers and spa’s are carried out on smartphones, if you do not have your Google My Business you are failing your business

We will write a dedicated blog post for Google My Business due to its importance.

2. Yelp

Love it or hate it, Yelp is a powerhouse for driving business to salons. it is another place where you have to make sure you are listed and this help your presence on the web.

Many times, when a potential client is looking for a new hair salon, they often turn to Yelp to read the reviews and get feedback from other previous customers.

We wouldn’t recommend paying for marketing on Yelp but we do suggest you manage your listing and respond to the reviews, both good and bad!

There is a very important aspect of Yelp, which allows customers to make book online appointments with salons via your Yelp profile.

How you show up on Yelp’s listings is driven by a number of factors, such as frequency you log into your account, speed to answer customer feedback, reviews frequency and recency of reviews left for your venue.

I will post another blog about how to manage reviews in future on websites like Yelp, Google, Facebook & Angie’s List.

3. Directory Open Project

This is not often on the list for salon owners. DMOZ is the shortened name for the Directory Open Project. This directory has been around for many years, although it will not show up on Google many times when you search, ensuring that you have your website listed is essential. If you are listed here, you are likely to see you website improve it search engine ranking.

There are some important things you have to do to be included in this directory, as it is a human checked directory and if you don’t have the correct information you will not get listed.

You must have the following for inclusion to this top directory:

– A completed website
– Terms & conditions and a privacy policy (if you don’t Google free privacy policy generator)
– Contact details…which as a hair salon you should have already

4. Facebook

If you are not on Facebook, I am not sure what planet you have been on….but many salons get Facebook wrong! Far too many salon owners have chosen the wrong categories for their salon.

If you want to allow customers to leave ratings, show your address (remember Name, Address, Phone!!) then you need to make your profile as a Local Business….nothing else will do. If you have a chain of salons, we suggest have a brand page and each salon should have a local page.

We will quickly show you how your salon should look on Facebook…

 

5. Bing Places

Some people thing that Bing is dead, which is definitely not and is in fact growing, so making sure you business is listed on here is very important. Bing not only drives the search within Microsoft products it also powers the search on Yahoo websites as well.

6. Yellow Pages

The granddaddy of the bunch. The big yellow book is online and is not going anywhere, so make sure you have your citation details correct.

7. Citysearch

A directory growing in popularity and has a good range of options for you to add citations and pictures of your venue as well.

8. Mapquest

Ensure you are the map! Mapquest is a leading provider of mapping technology to some leading websites. If you are not on here, you could be missing out on those people looking for a ‘salon near me’ searches on Google.

9. Hotfrog

Leaping forward (get the joke, leap like a frog..don’t worry) into local search is the world expanding Hotfrog.

10. Dexknows

Who knows? Dexknows of course! Make sure your salon is listed on this growing website with a very high authority in the eyes of Google

11. Manta

Manta is not just a place to ensure you have your business listed, it is also a place where you to take part in business discussions through their small business community forum and join discussions on marketing and finance etc.

12. Whitepages

Get listed on the site along with 300 million other businesses. As well as their own listings, they carry ads from Yellow Pages. They have outsourced their listings to Yext which means you have to pay and we do not feel that this is necessary as there are plenty of free quality citations available these days.

13. Angie’s List

This important US trades website has recently dropped its membership plans to become a free site, so make sure you get listed on here and don’t forget to answer your reviews both good and bad

14. Foursquare

Although not as powerful in terms of user numbers as it used to be and the project to split its product in two with the Swarm app, we still feel that this is an important place to ensure your listing is up to date or even added.

15. Linkedin

This isn’t just for the big companies to be listed, you are a business so therefore you can have a company listing there as well! Don’t forget to ensure you own personal profile is well populated as well and take part in the great group discussions in Linkedin Groups.

Don’t forget to ensure you own personal profile is well populated as well and take part in the great group discussions in Linkedin Groups.

16. MyWedding

Don’t miss out on this important aspect of the hairdressing industry.Make sure you put the right information here, such as if you do home or hotel visits for your services, many brides prefer their hair to be done at home or in a hotel.

Make sure you put the right information here, such as if you do home or hotel visits for your services, many brides prefer their hair to be done at home or in a hotel.

17. Weddingwire

This is a well-designed wedding directory covering everything a bride would nice for her wedding. Ensure you upload great quality photos on your profile together with all the matching citations for your business.

18 Local.com

A great website to ensure your citations are correct and added. This website not only covers local business listings, there are also event and activity listings to drive usage of the website.

It is not over yet…

When you are adding your citations to many of these websites, you will be asked to add a description…

Make sure you use all the available words, so if it says write 200 words, write 200 words.

But…

Make sure you included your city, district and services in the description, but don’t stuff you description with loads of keywords, as this is spamming, both the website you applied to add your listing and Google will not like this.

Let us recap our list of places to list your hair salon

  1. Google My Business
  2. Yelp
  3. Directory Open Project
  4. Facebook
  5. Bing Places
  6. Yellow Pages
  7. Citysearch
  8. Mapquest
  9. Hotfrog
  10. Dexknows
  11. Manta
  12. Whitepages
  13. Angie’s List
  14. Foursquare
  15. Linkedin
  16. MyWedding.com
  17. Weddingwire.com
  18. Local.com

Conclusion

Adding or updating the first five of these citations should take you two hours maximum and will help the likelihood of your website gaining higher positions in Google. I can imagine this would be the best two hours you ever spent in driving more business to your salon, barbers or spa.

Results won’t be immediate but it is likely you will see improvements over the coming months.

Write below and tell us below when you have added your business to some of these citations or if you have any questions about hair salon SEO I am happy to help.

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