It is estimate that over 20% of all searches on Google are local, and due the new integrated organic and google places search results appearing at the top of the page – it is clear than ranking well in Google Places is becoming more and more important.
I’ve put together a number of tips that can help your website rank highly for local search – stuff that we do as part of our ongoing website management for our Classic + and Premier clients!
First of all you have to set up your business page, which can be done by completing your profile on Google Places. All you need is a Google Account which is free and easy to set up, just fill in your details, then click on the security email to confirm your account then you are done!
Google Places citations site at the bottom of your Google Places page under the heading ‘More about this place,’ they display other websites which have mentioned your business these can include directory listings, news stories and articles. Citations are not something you can add to your Places page yourself, Google adds them to your listing as it crawls the web. When Google finds a citation or reference to your site you receive a point, you get this point even if that site fails to link directly to you. The more points you have the higher you will rank. Google recognises a combination of factors such as your business name, address, phone number and many others as a citation. We offer a citation building service as part of our Classic + or Premier web management packages.
This is important to get the best citations. They can come from pages such as Yahoo, Yelp, Insiderpages, Hotfrog and many more, but these are the ones that are regarded as giving you the most juice. This will allow you to give Google all the relevant information about your business. You will want to make sure that your details are comprehensive because filling out as many fields as possible can really help with your rankings for all different kinds of search phrases.
You will need to go back and check that all your existing citations are correct, as well as the ones you are getting listed – there is no point in getting listed with the wrong information. Make sure your citations have accurate names, addresses and the correct phone numbers. It has even been thought that providing a physical address can help your placing. It is important to ensure that your website details are correct but more importantly that the data on your website is correct and the same as these citations.
Not simply the general SEO link building back to your site, but more local links that mention your business name, address, phone number and URL. As with normal SEO you can include them in forms of social media and posts, but it would be beneficial to get these links from other sites such as bloggers, business sites and directories because they act as a sort of review.
Now onto reviews and as hinted above, reviews are strong links that show trust. Reviews are important to both getting the citation indexed and ranked highly in Google as well as propelling the Google Places listing. You will want to get as many reviews as you possibly can on as many different sites as you can, this will help a lot in improving your ranking. You can get people to review by encouraging customers and suppliers to do it, or by securing mutual agreement reviews from businesses in the same industry to help get the review ball rolling. Reviews can be acquired directly through Google or through 3rd party sites such as Dentist Finder.
By adding images and videos and ensuring your practice is listed in the correct categories can help it’s ranking. Also including keyword rich descriptions will help as well!