In this guide, we will be showing you how to create a Local Search Audit Report (LSA for short).
1) Initial Setup
There are two ways to create a new Local Search Audit Report, depending on whether there is a Location already set up which this report is linked to.
a) Create a Local Search Audit Report with no existing Location
To create a Local Search Audit Report when there isn’t a location, click the 'Local SEO Tools' dropdown in the top Menu, then select 'Local Search Audit'.
This will show a list of all existing Local Search Audit Reports that have been created in your account. If you don’t have any reports, you will be prompted to create one — there’s a useful video that explains everything you need to know about this tool.
If you do have a report(s), then you’ll need to click the green 'Add New Report' button near the top of the page (shown below within the red box).
b) Create a Local Search Audit Report with an existing location
If the Location has already been set up in your account, you can create the Local Search Audit Report through the Location — this is faster than setting it up from scratch, as the report uses the data for that location, meaning you have fewer fields to complete.
These are the steps to follow:
Click 'Clients and Locations' in the Top Menu — this will bring up a list of all the locations set up.
Click the 'View Dashboard' button to the right of the location that the local search Audit report is for.
Once the Location is open, a Location sidebar menu will be visible on the left, which shows a list of all tools and reports for that location.
Click 'Local Search Audit' on this sidebar (highlighted below within the red box).
Then, click the green 'Run Local Search Audit' button (shown below within the red box) to start setting up the report.
A popup will then appear, featuring two options: 'Monitor all My Data' and 'Run Local Search Audit'.
Clicking ‘Monitor All My Data’ enables you to create multiple reports for that location at one time — e.g. Reputation Manager, Citation Tracker, etc., which saves you lots of time if you plan to add these reports for that location.
However, in this guide, we are concentrating on Local Search Audit Reports only, so select the green 'Run Local Search Audit' button.
2) General Settings
It doesn't matter whether you do or don’t have a Location set up — the following steps are all the same.
The next step involves completing the General Settings section (shown below) with the fields highlighted.
Which Location is this report for?: This field will be pre-populated if you are setting up a report for an existing Location. If not, you can select a Location from the dropdown list, or you can leave this field empty. You can also add a new Location at this point if you want to.
Do you want this report to be available on the external URL?: The report can be published to an external URL (on a different domain: www.local-marketing-reports.com) — this makes it easy to share with clients and others who don't have a login to BrightLocal. External reports (on www.local-marketing-reports.com) and can be white-labeled with your logo and colors by selecting a white-label profile for your report. Learn more about white-labeling reports here.
Select white-label profile: Choose the white-label profile to be used for this report (it's not compulsory to select one). You can set-up multiple white-label profiles in your account.
3) Business Details
Below is an overview of the Business Details section, highlighting what needs to be entered.
You will need to create this report with an existing location (or add a new location first), so once added, most of these fields will be auto-completed with data from the Location.
It’s important to ensure the data entered in this section is accurate, and that it reflects the registered business details — this is because we use this data to identify the business on citation sites and review sites; we want to ensure that we identify the appropriate business, and return the correct listings and reviews. We recommend double-checking that the data is accurate before moving on.
Find Your Google My Business Listing: To ensure that we accurately track rankings in Google Maps and Local Pack, you can search and select the right Google My Business (GMB) profile for the business.
Please note: This lookup uses the Google Places API, which only returns details for businesses that display their street address on the Google My Business listing. If your business hides its address, you won’t be able to find it using this lookup. In this case, just skip this section; we will use your website address and business name to locate your business on Google Maps and Local Pack.
The 'Business Info' is read-only and pulled from your location details. To edit any of this information please go to Location settings, there is a link under "Business Info' if needed.
You can edit the business website address here if needed, however, it will not update the Location data, only this report. The URL of the business website — we will use this to identify your rankings in search engines, and will also crawl this website to return data in the 'On-site SEO' section of the report.
If you need to update the Google My Business account that's connected, simply click where the red box indicates below, then follow these steps.
4) Search Settings
Below is an overview of the Search Settings section, highlighting which fields needs to be entered:
Enter your search terms: Enter the keywords you'd like to track on the report — you can enter a maximum of five. Please ensure that each keyword is entered on a separate line. If you'd like some help knowing which search terms/keywords to track, check out this course in the BrightLocal Academy: How to Master Local Keyword Research.
Set your Search Location: Enter the location from where the search is to be done from. We use this to simulate the location of a searcher, so you can see how the business ranks in their town, city or zip code. If you are setting up a report for a US business, please include the state code in the Search Location — e.g. Chicago, IL or 90244, CA.
Type of Business: We use this information when identifying top-ranked competitors in Google My Business, so you can benchmark against them. We combine this with your search location — e.g. Plumber in Chicago, IL — to identify local competitors.
5) Report Sections
Below is an overview of the Report Sections, highlighting the different sections / modules of the Local Search Audit report. You can use this to determine which sections to include (or exclude) from your report — simply uncheck the boxes for sections that you want to exclude.
Please note: If you uncheck the On-Site SEO section, the Appendix section will also be excluded. The Appendix displays the raw page-level data that the On-Site SEO section summarises, meaning that you can’t have one without the other.
7) Setting up email alerts
Next, you can set up the email notifications you’d like to receive once the Local Search Audit Report has completed.
You can add up to five email addresses to receive notifications. If you don’t want to receive these, just uncheck the box above the text area.
8) Running and saving the report
At the bottom of the report setup page, you will see the 'Run Local Search Audit' button. Clicking this button will run the report — and will save the settings to your account, as well as kicking off report-processing.
You have the option to update the Location and other reports for that location with the data you entered into the fields on this page. To do this, simply tick the 'Update Locations and Other Reports' checkbox (shown at the bottom of the red box below), and this will then update the data stored against the Location and linked reports.
Please note: You won’t see any changes in the data from the other reports until the reports are re-run.
9) After the report is set up
Once the Local Search Audit report has been completed, there are several further actions you can take to get more out of the data — you can access these by clicking on the 'Actions' dropdown (see the red box above).
Re-run Report: You can manually re-run the report here. Once you have made any updates in the settings, or you want to manually see new results without waiting on a schedule, you can manually re-run the report.
Edit Report Settings: This takes you to the report's 'Settings', where you can update details and edit the citation / review sites displayed in your report.
View External Report: This opens the interactive report in a new tab of your internet browser, with all mention of BrightLocal removed, including within the URL — this is perfect to share with your clients and colleagues when you want to showcase local marketing progress.
Download PDF: Select this to download the Local Search Audit report in PDF format, which will inherit the white-label settings that you selected when the report was created.