In fact your link profile has always been a powerful factor in how you rank for local terms. Just to clarify the point, when Google is deciding who ranks top for a local term they are looking closely into how many links come from local sites.
For example, if you want to rank for the term “used cars Manchester” it will make a huge difference to your campaign if you have links pointing to your site from other businesses/sites based in Manchester. Even though this is nothing new in my opinion I thought it was an opportunity to go over some techniques for enhancing your localized search results. So including the above here are some more techniques you can implement, to improve local positioning;
Use Your Business Address
Having your business address in the footer of your site will always create a good local emphasis. Google will soon pick up on the keywords used in the address and start to rank your site for related terms.
Dedicate a Page
This is personal technique that works well, in my opinion. Dedicate a full page to services in the area you are targeting, advice where you are situated and local businesses you may have worked with. This gives you the opportunity to optimize a whole page for local search including the links that point back to it.
Google show more and more of their business listings, particularly for localized searches. Firstly make sure you are listed and secondly make sure your information is accurate and up to date. Often searchers will go no deeper than the actual listing so make sure it includes everything the potential customer needs to contact you.
Use Local Directories
We already know that you need local links but where are you going to get them from? Your competitors certainly aren’t going to oblige. Instead use local business directories and information directories. Look for local sites that may consider sending you a link back, if you have a business you could may be look at career services and schools.
Know Your Competition
Where is your competition getting their links from? Use this information to hunt down links from the same places, remember you have to catch your competition up before you can over take them.
Last but not least is my old favorite, the anchor text. Where possible try to get anchor text that includes the local term you are targeting. Even if it is not the exact keyword, try and get the name of the city/county in the anchor text, this combined with local links is the most powerful way to the top of local rankings.