Local results are the ones that appear at the top of Google when people are searching for businesses near their location.
You’ve no doubt seen these when searching for things like restaurants or plumbers. Here’s an example:
The way to optimise your own business’s local ranking is by using Google My Business.
Providing complete and accurate business information in Google My Business can really help your business’s local ranking on Google.
Here are six useful tips on how to improve the local ranking of your business on Google.
How to make sure your business ranks well on Google local searches
- Go to Google My Business and find your business. If you can’t find it by searching, you may need to create it.
- Verify your business locations – this may require requesting a postcard with a code that you will enter to take ownership of your location so you can manage the information.
- Make sure that you’ve entered all of your business information in Google My Business. Business name and address needs to be exact and consistent across the Internet, so use the same standard wording for all your online listings.
- Enter your opening hours. Google wants comprehensive information and customers want to know when you are open.
- Add photos. Tell the story of your business, so add as many images you can to show your business, your products or services and the people who work there.
- Manage and respond to reviews. Whilst you’re not allowed to incentivise your customers to provide reviews, using tools like ReviewsMANAGER can substantially increase the chances of attracting more customer reviews. According to Google themselves, “high-quality, positive reviews from your customers will improve your business’s visibility and increase the likelihood that a potential customer will visit your location”.
Those are the basics. How well your business will rank on local results ultimately depends on three things:
- Relevance – this is how well your listing matches what people are looking for. If your listing is complete and detailed, it is more likely to match.
- Distance – Google will try to ascertain where a person is to make the results relevant to their location.
- Prominence – this is how ‘famous’ or well known a business is, but also – and this is really important for smaller businesses – it is based on how much comprehensive information Google can find about your business. This includes links, articles, directories and reviews. Google say “more reviews and positive ratings will probably improve a business’s local ranking” so that’s something to really focus on in your marketing.
You can’t buy your way to a better local ranking on Google. So you need to work on all of the above to maximise your chances of ranking well for local searches.
If you want help with optimising your business for Google local searches, get in touch with the team at Hotspot Marketing.