Local SEO Trends in 2023: What You Need to Know

local seo trends for 2023 mapped out in a diagram

As we all know by now, SEO isn’t static. In this fast-paced ever-changing environment, staying ahead of the trends can mean the difference between a highly-profitable year, instead of a transitional one. 


In short, some of the most important local SEO trends in 2023 will be:


  1. Switching to GA4
  2. User Experience (UX) is everything
  3. The impact of reviews
  4. Search features, rich results, and schema
  5. Get found outside of Google


What is Local SEO?


As we outlined in our recent blog, “Local SEO is a component of SEO strategy that focuses on optimizing your business’s ability to rank for a particular location or region in local search results for all search engines.”


For many of our clients, local SEO is the bread and butter of their new business acquisition, making it more important than ever to know what the future holds.


Switching to GA4 – The Importance For Local SEO in 2023


As you may have heard by now in July 2023 Google will be pausing all data collection from Universal Analytics (UA) properties. This means that if you don’t have the latest version of Google Analytics, GA4, already set up on your site then you’ll need to follow this guide or one of the many out there to do it yourself, or you can contact our team who can save you the time and headaches by doing it for you.


As my fellow SEO Jess put it in her blog “Upgrading Google Analytics to GA4: What You Need to Know”, GA4 offers “new features, updates to the user interface, and provides a completely new way to view and analyze data, with a stronger focus being placed on event tracking.”


As the digital world moves towards stronger privacy regulations, GA4’s cookieless advanced tracking features are built for the future of data collection. The earlier that this data collection is set up on your site, the sooner you can accurately compare year-on-year data in the future. 


For hotel and hospitality sites that integrate with third-party booking engines, such as FareHarbor, InnRoads, etc, many of these have or are in the process of implementing a GA4 integration, making it easy to make the switch.


For Local SEO User Experience (UX) is Everything in 2023


If we learned anything from the past year of local SEO then it’s this: creating helpful content and a great UX are among the top factors for a website to rank highly on Google.


You may think that this is obvious, but how many times have you seen a beautifully designed website with a video background that takes almost a minute to load on your phone? Or having to scroll on a mobile device through endless menus, ads, and irrelevant content to find the answer/product/statistic you were looking for?


Google is now indexing all new websites using mobile-first indexing, meaning a good mobile UX will have a large sway in rankings. Is the font big enough on your mobile design? Are the most important links and pieces of information easily found right away? These are going to be the important questions for websites in 2023.


Most brands will also need to consider accessibility when it comes to positive UX. While it is not a current federal legal requirement (January 2023), there are state and local regulations that have resulted in lawsuits for sites that are not compliant. Because of these cases, ADA-compliant website design is on the rise. 


The vast majority of the ADA recommendations will improve UX for all users, especially on mobile devices, meaning an investment in accessibility can be an investment in your local search rankings and bottom line.


Our team specializes in a great mobile-first UX web design and regularly builds and maintains ADA and WCAG-compliant websites. Contact our team to learn more.


The Impact of Reviews on Local SEO in 2023


We all know the importance of having customers leave reviews on Google, Yelp, Facebook, etc for a small business. But did you know a study in 2022 found that businesses with 10 or more reviews rank higher in search results?


What’s even more important than generating reviews is responding to them. Good or bad, regularly replying to all reviews, and questions, will have a positive impact on online exposure. 


If someone didn’t enjoy their meal at a restaurant after visiting for the first time and left a scathing review, this could turn thousands of potential customers away. With a carefully crafted invitation to come back and try another dish for free (if they leave reviews regularly and aren’t looking for a free meal), turning trolls into triumphs.


While this does take a time commitment, it is invaluable to have control over your online reputation. While most platforms do send review notifications, Google doesn’t email you when someone asks a question on a Google My Business Profile, so regularly checking, and updating your profile is essential to your local SEO.


Local SEO Search Features, Rich Results, and Schema


Searchers decide what to click on Google in 15 seconds or less, meaning how and how many times your business appears in search results is more important than ever. 


Did you know there are more than 10 different ways your local business can show on Google’s first page?



Organic search results – webpages that Google most closely associates as high-quality answers to the search query.

Google My Business profile – It’s free, people can call straight from Google, get verified and you can add photos, reply to reviews and questions and make your business stand out.

Paid Ads – Targeted campaigns can help your business appear at the top of search results for your specific audience and keywords.

Featured Snippets – A few sentences or short paragraph pulled from a trusted site that answers the search query’s question without actually going onto the site.

Video – Youtube videos that answer a query with appropriate clips queued ready to play.

Local Pack – “…near me”, “…nearby” and “…in {enter city/town/state}” queries show business profile results displayed on a map. In mobile searches, this dominates the results.

Shopping – Products pulled from Google Merchant Center accounts that best match the search query.

“People also ask” and “Related searches” – Google generates related questions and provides answers in the form of featured snippets. This can appear in multiple places in the search results.

Aggregate Sites – Listing sites such as clutch.co for PR can provide great exposure and additional reviews/engagement with customers.

Social Media – Branded searches can return your Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn profiles, increasing your brand exposure and leaving a route to your business if your site experiences issues. Tweets are also displayed as search results when relevant.


With 9 of these 10 result types being free, increasing your local SEO exposure on relevant searches is attainable for any business.


Adding schema to a site can also improve your chances of being shown in these rich results. Schema is a type of structured data that makes it easier for a search engine to crawl a site and understand what information is valuable. Schema.org contains categories for local business schema so they are able to code in important information depending on what services or products the business offers. Other types of schema properties that could enhance visibility for local businesses are review, aggregate rating, FAQ page, department, and products.


Get Found Outside of Google in 2023


Social media is quickly becoming a popular way to search for businesses, products, and services with younger audiences. In 2023 this will continue to grow exponentially. By maintaining profiles on popular platforms, (this is the important bit) that resonate with your target customers, you can be discovered, engaged, and shared in multiple ways.


Struggling to put out high-quality content already? Repurposing content to stay relevant has never been easier. Transcribing sites such as Rev and Temi can turn video interviews into SEO-worthy long-form articles in minutes. Free podcasting app Anchor (from Spotify) can take any audio clips or videos, add catchy a jingle, and distribute a freshly made podcast across 7+ platforms all on a very easy-to-use interface. 


2023 will be the year customers want to find you on YouTube on their TV, browse your rooms while scrolling through TikTok on their phone, make a booking on your site on a tablet 2 days later and confirm their reservation on their smartwatch 2 months after that.


Ensuring that you can #1 be found and #2 provide a seamless, enjoyable, brand-uplifting experience across all devices is essential.


Are Your Digital Marketing and Local SEO Strategies Ready For 2023?


Have questions about how to take your strategy to the next level this year? Browse our SEO case studies, check out our awards, and get in touch with our team of experts today.

About Dan Prynne

Daniel Prynne joined the Mannix Marketing team in 2022 as a Digital Marketing Strategist. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing from the University of the West of England. Since 2019 Daniel has specialized in on-page SEO and social media strategy for nonprofits. He loves learning new ways to optimize websites and demonstrating proven success with new and returning clients.  When not working, Daniel enjoys spending time with his wife and son, playing soccer, reading and traveling.