Mastering the #1 SEO Rule takes a change of perspective and thinking more about your customer than your own services.


Cleaning Business Today kicks off a series of articles covering all aspects of local SEO. In this first article, you’ll get the inside track on how search engines treat search queries so you can improve your visibility in the search results.

Results Matter to You and Search Engines

In a way, search engines and cleaning companies share the same goal: results. Both use the latest tools and techniques to achieve the best results and satisfy customers. And just like you can lose customers to the competition if you don’t deliver the bests results, so can search engines that don’t quickly and precisely match the user’s query.

Local SEO is a major player in the long-term success of search engines and businesses. For search engines, the goal is to quickly provide information that best matches the search query for the locale in which the search is being conducted.

For businesses, the goal is to really understand what a searcher is looking for and provide it better to outrank the competition.

The #1 SEO Rule

The most important rule for local SEO is: Build for searchers first. Build for search engines second.

The way to do that is keyword intent. Also known as searcher intent, it refers to the specific reason(s) why someone is actually searching for a particular phrase.

Take the search query “basketball” as an example. Does the person conducting the search want to watch basketball, read about basketball history, buy a basketball, play basketball, etc.?

For your site to rank high on local search engine results, it must include content that addresses all the reasons why a searcher would type your particular target search terms into Google.

When in doubt, ask yourself: “What would my prospective customers want to see here and how can I provide a better experience than my competition?”

How Search Engines Decipher Keyword Intent

The major search engines develop algorithms to gain knowledge about how people search. Recently, Google was granted a patent for a new way to measure keyword intent based on how well a website addresses the searcher’s problem or issue.

For your website to be noticed by search engine algorithms, it needs to incorporate local SEO geared toward searcher intent. Upcoming articles in the series will show you how. Here’s a sneak preview:


  • Backlinks – Learn how to build links on other websites to bring traffic to your site and get the best resource for checking your competitors’ links.
  • Reviews and Citations – Read everything you need to know about reviews and citations, from why search engines need them to where to get them.
  • Content – Get tips on developing useful, searchable information for your website that passes the “Who Cares?” test.
  • Design and User Experience (UX) – Learn the most important components of website design to enhance the user experience of your prospective customers.
  • Brand Awareness – Discover how brand awareness affects search and what you can do to boost your brand.
  • SEO Expertise – Know how to shop for an SEO expert by following our guidelines.Bullet point here


The key to local SEO for your cleaning company is to work on all strategies at once, not just one or two at a time. Our local SEO article series will help you figure it all out. Stay tuned!

John Crenshaw is Director of Search, Content & Media at John is a featured speaker at the upcoming ARCSI Convention, October 19-23 in Las Vegas.