Regardless of whether you own a local business or e-commerce website, it’s likely that your customers use Google Maps to search for products and services. Consequently, optimizing for Google Maps ranking has become one of the most important things a business can do to increase its visibility on the SERP. With the rise of the local pack, having a high-ranking Google Maps listing is key to getting more views and clicks from potential clients.
As a result, Google has shifted its algorithm to prioritize the most relevant local businesses in search results. To rank higher in the local pack, a business needs to make sure its Google Business Profile is fully completed and active. It also needs to take other factors into consideration such as relevance, distance and prominence.
Relevance – How closely the business matches the search query. Prominence – How well-known the business is, both offline and online. This includes backlinks, website organic positions and GMB reviews. This is arguably the hardest factor to affect. However, by ensuring that the business has an excellent reputation both offline and online, it can be boosted in this regard.
Building citations on local directories and social media accounts is a great way to boost your Google Maps rankings. This is because it shows that the business is widely recognizable and trusted. However, you should avoid using paid citations as they may hurt your Google Maps rankings in the long run.
Another thing to keep in mind is that Google ranks business listings based on the number of positive reviews they have. It also takes into account how responsive a business is to its customers. Therefore, it’s important that you encourage your customers to leave reviews and respond to them promptly. Similarly, negative reviews can be turned into a strength if the business is proactive about responding to them.
Lastly, the proximity of a business to the searcher is an important Google Maps ranking factor. While it’s not something that can be directly influenced, it’s a good idea to ensure that your business is located within the city limits or close to it.
The bottom line is that the local pack is the first place users see when they perform a Google search on a mobile device. It’s an extremely competitive spot to be in, but it can be a great way to get new clients. With the right optimizations, you can make your Google Maps ranking stand out from the competition and bring in more customers.
Considering that most people don’t even look past the top three results, it’s worth the effort to optimize your Google Maps ranking. Fortunately, it’s not as hard as you might think. Just follow the tips in this article, and you’ll be on your way to a higher Google Maps ranking in no time!