Local SEO vs. Organic SEO: What You Need To Know

Local SEO vs. Organic SEO: What You Need To KnowOptimizing your website for search engines allows you to drive more traffic to it. If the traffic you generate is targeted, it should naturally lead to more email subscribers and sales.

But SEO isn’t exactly a straightforward strategy. Marketers can become frustrated with how hard it is to execute, and how long it can take to work.

Further complicating matters, there’s a difference between local SEO and organic SEO. With local SEO, the goal is to drive traffic to your website from a specific geographic location. Restaurants, hotels, and retail storefronts are great examples of local businesses. Entities utilizing organic SEO may not have a physical location and aren’t dependent on locally oriented searches.

Local SEO vs. SEO

Let’s say, for instance, your brick-and-mortar business is in Chicago, Illinois. Though your accounting firm sometimes serves out-of-state clients, you’re primarily looking to attract a local client base.

With local SEO, you want to create signals showing your practice is a relevant result for the Chicago area. You can do this by adding your address to your website, claiming your Google My Business listing, registering your business with consumer review sites and directories, and so on.

Keywords are still an important factor in local SEO, but you’ll want to focus on local keywords, such as “entertainment lawyer Seattle”, and the like.

When a business focuses on organic SEO, it likely means their business is built primarily around their online presence and their website. They probably don’t have a physical store but are still looking to rank for specific keywords to do with their niche, industry, or products.

What types of companies, entrepreneurs, or individuals employ organic SEO? Bloggers, podcasters, affiliate marketers, internet marketers, online publications, and many others.

These types of businesses typically do not focus on specific locations and instead work to rank for general keywords like “challenging guitar scale exercises” or “advanced digital marketing tips”, depending on their target market and product offering.

The end goal of organic SEO is to become a trusted and relevant source of information to consumers globally.

Determine Which is Right for Your Business

Whether your business has a physical location is a major consideration when it comes to choosing local or organic SEO. You also need to think about how your customers will be purchasing and using your products.

If you’re running an eCommerce business, for example, you may have physical goods that you ship out to customers. But unless customers are walking in your front door to purchase your products, local SEO isn’t entirely necessary.

Similarly, if you’re a blogger with digital products, payment and delivery can essentially be set on autopilot using the right tools. Local SEO could be of some value, but wouldn’t necessarily be your focus.

Businesses that serve customers in-person or in a physical location will likely benefit the most from local SEO. When you make it easy for people to find you online, you should see an increase in business.

One thing all types of businesses have in common is competition. Since your competitors are likely trying to rank for the same keywords you are, you must be strategic in how you choose your terms. Targeted long-tail keywords will be an important consideration for you.


The difference between local SEO and organic SEO isn’t major. You just need to be thinking about what terms your target audience is searching for, and then how to present your product or service. Getting people to your website is just the first step. Then you need to convert them into a subscriber or customer.

Which SEO strategy are you working on? Are you ranking for your terms? Are you achieving your desired results?

Let us know in the comments below.

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