Google is the most popular search engine in the world, so it should come as no surprise that more people visit local businesses when they see them show up on Google Maps. Optimizing your business’s Google Maps ranking is essential if you want to attract more local visitors, phone calls, sign-ups, and other conversions.
In 2016, Google redesigned its search results pages to remove the seven-business-listing “snack pack” and replace it with a much more coveted three-business listing in the “map pack.” This change has dramatically changed how SEOs optimize their business for local searches. Now, ranking in the map pack is a huge goal that requires constant attention.
As Google continues to refine its algorithms, it has become clear that prominence and proximity are the most important factors when it comes to boosting your business’s rankings. Prominence is a measure of how well-known a business is, both offline and online, including a brand’s website organic rankings, GMB reviews, ratings, and backlinks. Proximity is a measure of how close a business is to the searcher’s current location.
To improve your chances of ranking higher in the map pack, start by claiming your business’s Google My Business profile and verifying its accuracy. Double check that your NAP data (name, address, phone number) exactly matches the information published on your website and anywhere else you promote your business. Also make sure that your primary and secondary categories reflect the services that you offer.
Adding professional photos to your Google My Business page will make your business look more authentic in the eyes of potential customers and help them distinguish your listings from others. In addition to looking more appealing, photos have been shown to boost Google’s search engine optimization.
Another simple way to improve your Google Maps ranking is to update the content on your business’s page with events, updates about the business, special offers, and other relevant news. Posting frequent and high-quality content to your Google My Business page shows that you’re active, which will increase the likelihood of your listing showing up in the map pack.
Responding to your customers’ reviews is an excellent way to build trust and encourage more people to leave positive reviews. In addition to being a great customer service practice, this will also show that you value feedback and are working on improvements for your business.
Keeping a close eye on your Google Maps ranking is an important part of local SEO, but it’s time-consuming and hard to keep track of. Use a tool like Semrush’s Listing Management to get a comprehensive overview of your Google Maps ranking and make the necessary adjustments. This will give you the peace of mind that your Maps ranking is in good hands. You can then focus on enhancing other aspects of your SEO strategy. The end result will be more local traffic and higher revenue for your business.