Recently, Google has changed the algorithms that search the web and give users the results they are looking for when searching for service businesses. This service is called Local Business Listings. These new algorithms only give spots to those sites which are providing quality and fresh content, which is what Google’s search engine is always looking for. Read on and learn about what has changed, and how you can increase your chance of getting a top spot on Google’s Local Business Listings.
Google’s Local Business Listings are a marketing strategy that is different from pay-per-clicks and organic SEO marketing. These lists only show up when a web user searches for a service-oriented business in a geographically specific area. You see this when the large Google map appears next to the URLs and phone numbers of each business found in the search. Standard, ten businesses are shown, but the user can click the “More Results from [city]” and be sent to a larger map with an alphabetical listing. This listing will correspond to red pegs on the maps showing each business that is registered on Google Maps.
Now more than ever these listings are more important because they are being displayed more often. This is due to more searches finding ten or more listings even before the organic SEO listings are shown.
The Changes in the Algorithms
Businesses that have been listed on the Local Business Listings have dropped from #3 to #45, out of 3,655 businesses. This is being seen throughout various markets. Google has made the process of submitting to their services simple, much simpler than other SEO services. What this means is that these ranks are valuable, and the competition for them is rising.
Since these drops have began, we realize that Google’s Local Business Listings must have its own algorithms for searches and results. Once a few of these patterns were noticed, it was easy to make adjustments using a modeling method. These can result in improved ranks in little time.
There are seven things that have been found to help with being listed high on the Local Business Listings. These are:
- Many reviews: A good website and company will have positive reviews from real customers. Try not to have too many, and make sure they are genuine. It’s also good to have reviews that are over three stars. Shoppers love to read these and many base purchases on customer reviews.
- Company name contains keywords: Changing your name to make this work is deceptive, and bad practice. However, sometimes keywords are in your name or LLC, so make sure this is the name you register with Google if this applies to you.
- Description includes keywords: Google gives companies a place to write a description of their business, and this is a great place to add important keywords or phrases, as well as give shoppers an idea of what you offer.
- Create links: Adding links around the web that point to your site will help your rankings. You can also add a link to your homepage to your Google listing, giving shoppers an easy way to find you.
- Photos: Ever since Google has added this feature, it has become a very important one. You should add many photos to your listing, as well as your logo.
- Videos: Many companies have videos on YouTube already, and you can add those right to your Google listing.
- Include a coupon: Google offers users the ability to download and print coupons right from your listing.
Adding as many of these as possible will get you a high ranking on Google’s Local Business Listing, and likely a top ten spot. This is a great use of your time and will improve your business in little time.