Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Raise Your Local Business Listing Rank in Google LOCAL

It appears Google has recently changed its algorithm for Local Business Listings by only giving the top spots to those feeding the search engine’s ever increasing need for content. Keep reading to learn what are Google Local Business Listings, what’s changed recently, as well as how to optimize so your local business is on top of the map.

Google Local Business Listings are different than organic or pay-per-click listings. They typically only show up when the user types a service oriented business followed by the city for their search. A large map from Google Maps appears alongside up to ten URLs with a phone number by each. If you need more than ten listings you can click in “More Results from ‘Insert City’ “ and you’ll be taken to a map with alphabetically lettered red pegs for each register business on Google Maps.

It seems over the last year being listed on Google Maps and/or Google’s Local Business Listings is becoming even more important since they are being displayed more often in search with up to ten listings before organic listings even start.

Changes in Google Local Business Listings’ AlgorithmOne client of ours was listed and is still listed under a Local Business Listing for their service, but it seems the listing fell in a short period of time; they went from #2 to #44 out of 3,656. Since many local business owners are seeing the value in these listings and Google makes the submission process much easier to understand than the general ins and outs of SEO, competition is on the rise.

With this recent surprise in dropping, I have decided Google Local Business Listings has its own algorithm. After noticing what the patterns were and what the top listings did, I made some adjustments using the modeling method. Soon after I noticed a huge rise in ranking.

Based on researching and observation, the pattern that presents itself for those that are high on the listings is they have:

1. Photos - They only recently they allowed this. Add as many photos as you can and a company logo.

2. Multiple Reviews - It’s important that these be from real customers. You can not have too many. Don’t fake them either, it’s easy to see. Just as with Amazon, people trust products with lots reviews that have kept above three stars.

3. Use Keywords in Company Description - They offer an area where the business representative can describe what the company offers.

4. Use Keyword s in Company Name - Don’t be deceptive by changing your company name, but if your keywords are in the extended business name or LLC, make sure this is the name in which you register.

5. Add a Coupon – Google allows printable coupons to be added by your listing.
Add these elements to your Google Local Business Listing and you are sure to be in the top ten.

6. Create links to the listing – Add a link from your homepage to the listing and encourage current customers or website visitors to review your company.

7. Add Videos- If your company already has vides on YouTube you can place them right there on the page.

Authored by Neil on Thu, 08/07/2008 - 22:07.