7 Tips to Boost Your Local Ranking On Google

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7 Tips to Boost Your Local Ranking On Google

The correlation between your organic traffic and search engine ranking positions is directly proportional. Your website’s prominence in the rankings directly influences the volume of traffic it receives. This significance is even more pronounced for local businesses in terms of local rankings. When you are keeping Local SEO in the perspective, your website’s ranking hinges on its relevance in the locality of your business operations. Achieving this involves optimizing websites to signal to search engines that your local business is competent and valuable to common consumers seeking products and services of your targeted niche. 

In this optimization process, various tasks are undertaken, such as creating a Google My Business profile, uploading your NAP (name, address, and phone number) details on the same platform, and ensuring accuracy in other local business online directories. Google crawls through the worldwide web to keep track of how and where your business is mentioned online. It checks for the Relevance, distance, and prominence boost your website’s ranking in searches specific to your business location. This helps align your online presence with where your business operates. 

Listing your business profile on Google Maps and online directories are created to make it easier for consumers to find the “best” services. Since consumers usually don’t check beyond the initial results when deciding where to go, it’s mandatory to ensure that your local citations and other listings are optimized to appear first in relevant searches.

What steps should be undertaken to improve local rankings for a business on Google?

It is better to review your whole Local SEO plan from scratch to make sure you have gotten everything right from the start. This will allow you to find out if there are any inconsistencies in your past SEO efforts, if there are any, and refine your entire SEO plan using our practical tips.

1. Work on the base foundation of your website

A well-organized and structured website is crucial for successful SEO. If your website is hard for people to use and for Google to understand, your rankings might drop. Pay attention to Core Web Vitals, which are important for a good user experience. 

  • Conduct a Technical SEO Audit:
    Even though the Google algorithm is complex, focusing on basic technical aspects can help you stand out. Conducting an SEO audit is important for making your website work better. Google looks at page experience, which includes how users interact with a web page on both mobile and desktop devices.
  • Core Web Vitals:
    Keep an eye on and improve your site’s speed, whether people are using it on a computer or a phone. Important metrics include Largest Contentful Paint (LCP), First Input Delay (FID), and Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS). It’s also crucial to make sure your images and scripts are the right size to improve Core Web Vitals.
  • File Size:
    Make your images smaller and use the right file formats to make your site faster. Be careful about using too many JavaScript (JS) and CSS files, as they can slow down your website. Minimize files by removing unnecessary parts and combine scripts into one file for faster loading. 
  • Mobile Friendly:
    Since Google focuses on mobile-first indexing, make sure your site works well on phones. Pay attention to what people are searching for and how well your site performs on mobile devices. 
  • HTTPS:
    Check if your site is secure. If it’s not, learn how to make it secure. 
  • No Intrusive Interstitials:
    Avoid using pop-ups or overlays that cover up content, as they can make users unhappy and hurt your rankings.

2. Claim your Business Profile on Google

The second step is claiming your listing. Creating the listing allows you to provide basic information like business name, physical address, and category. However, claiming it enables you to add more details, and the fuller your listing, the higher it ranks on Google Maps.

Here’s what you need to do:

  • Have a Google My Business account: You must have a Google My Business account to claim your listing. If you already have one, go to your Google My Business listing, and choose “Claim this business” or “Own this business?” Then, follow the prompts.
  • If you don’t have a Google My Business account: Visit Google.com/maps or use the Google Maps app on your smartphone. Look up your business name. If you see it in the list that drops down, along with a location, that means you already have a listing. You can move on to the next part.
  • If your business name is not listed, you should ensure you “Add your Business Profile on Google“.

Remember that people from anywhere in the world can add a business to Google Maps. Even if you haven’t done it yourself, make sure to verify if your business is already listed. It’s important to know that the person who initially adds your business to Google Maps doesn’t have control over the listing. Only the person who claims ownership and proves it will gain control, as we’ll explain in the next steps.

3. Add information to your Google My Business listing

Now that you’ve set up your Google My Business listing and connected it to your Google My Business account, it’s time to optimize it for better local search rankings. The more details you provide, the higher your ranking can be. Log in to your Google My Business account, and you’ll find a dashboard with different tabs. Choose the “Info” tab, where you can update various details like your business name, category, address, service area, hours, phone number, website, products, services, attributes, and description. Here are tips to optimize these sections for improved Google Maps ranking:

  • Maintain Consistency:
    Ensure consistency in your business name and address across all online platforms, including your website, Bing, Yelp, and Facebook. This consistency builds trust with Google.
  • Use a Local Phone Number:
    Google prefers local phone numbers over toll-free numbers, which are often associated with spam. A local number with your area code reinforces your business’s location.
  • Keep Business Hours Updated:
    Update your business hours on Google My Business Profile to signal your business’s activity and reliability. Accurate hours prevent customer inconvenience and negative reviews, particularly during the pandemic.
  • Write a Business Description:
    Craft a description that gives visitors an overview of your business, highlights unique features, and aligns with your brand’s tone. Include keywords to enhance your listing’s visibility in relevant searches.
  • Add a Service Area:
    When you list your service area, it lets customers know the geographic area where you can provide your products and services.
  • Properly Categorize Your Business:
    Choose the most fitting primary category that represents your business’s core offerings. Add secondary categories if applicable. While you can’t add custom categories, the drop-down menu provides relevant options.

Optimizing these details will not only boost your Google Maps ranking but also provide users with accurate and helpful information about your business.

4. Optimize Your Webpage For Google

While we’re making progress with your off-page strategies, there are still some on-page tasks to tackle for your website!  

It’s essential to create engaging content that keeps readers interested until the end. To capture your target audience’s attention quickly, start with a brief introductory summary that outlines what readers can expect from the post.  

To make your content Google-friendly, consider these effective strategies  

  • Embed Google Map on your Website:
    Boosting your Google Maps ranking is made easier by adding a Google map to your website, a practice commonly seen on the contact us page. Embedding a Google map is like confirming to Google that your business is situated where your listing indicates. Ensure the address matches the one on your Google My Business listing.

    To embed a Google Map on your website, follow these steps:
    1. Look up your business name on Google Maps.
    2. Click on “Share” in your listing.
    3. Choose the “Embed a map” tab.
    4. Click Copy HTML
    5. Paste the embed code where you want the map to appear on the page.
  • Inform Google About Your Pages:
    Add structured data throughout your site so that Google can easily understand the content.
  • Keep Titles Concise:
    Short titles are preferred for better readability and SEO impact. Consider adding location keywords for improved search engine crawlability. (Examples: Dentist in New York, NY – Brand Name)
  • Craft Unique Titles & Meta Descriptions:
    Although titles and meta descriptions don’t directly impact your website’s ranking, they play a significant role in showcasing your content’s value on the search engine results page (SERP). Well-crafted titles and meta descriptions can boost your click-through rate and increase traffic.
  • Use Specific Internal Anchor Text:
    Be clear and direct in your internal anchor text if you want your content to rank for a specific keyword. Avoid vague and elusive anchor texts that may confuse readers and search engines.

5. Understanding Search Intent

Google aims to better understand the context of a search to provide relevant results matching the user’s intent. There are four common types of search intent:

  • Navigational: Searching for a particular website. Navigational keywords often include the name of the brand, company, or website, such as “Facebook login,” “Amazon,” or “YouTube.
  • Informational: Seeking knowledge. Informational keywords include “how to tie a tie,” “what is climate change,” or “best practices for SEO.
  • Commercial: Looking for data (such as reviews) to make an informed purchase decision. Commercial keywords include “buy iPhone X,” “best dentist in New York” or “cheap flights to New York.
  • Transactional: Searching to make a purchase (finding where to buy). Transactional keywords often include words like “buy,” “purchase,” “order,” “subscribe,” or “download,” indicating that the user is ready to act rather than just seeking information.

6. Get Google Reviews

Google appreciates it when you upload photos to your local listing.

  • Boost Your Ranking: Adding images to your business listing informs Google that your business is active and deserves a higher ranking in local search results.
  • Advancements in Photo Recognition: Google’s technology for recognizing photos is getting better. This matters because Google is now displaying images in local search results.
  • Consumer Appeal: Following the SEO principle that Google loves what consumers love, and consumers generally appreciate photos. Including them in your listing can positively impact your visibility. If you don’t include photos in your listing, it might display a generic map image instead:

To boost your Google Maps ranking, add excellent photos to your business listing that showcase the experience at your place. Go to the “Photos” section in your Google My Business dashboard and click the blue circle with a white plus sign. You can easily drag and drop multiple photos or videos. Aim to include at least one new photo each day for the best results.

7. Regularly Audit Local Citations and Update Google Maps Listing

Google may devalue businesses that have multiple phone numbers or locations listed for a single actual business. Remove any duplicate listings and unnecessary details to make sure your main listing gets a higher ranking.  

Similar to how you post on Facebook, you can share updates directly on your Google My Business listing. Regularly posting like this tells Google that you actively manage your listing, which can positively impact your ranking. Moreover, when people are searching on Google, they often have a strong intent to find something specific. By using Google posts, you can showcase your promotions to an audience that is ready to engage. 

Google My Business listings are evolving, providing users with quick access to essential information, facilitating well-informed buying decisions. Implement the tips shared in this guide, and you’ll position your business prominently on Google Maps, reaping the benefits of heightened visibility, increased engagement, and enhanced revenue. 

If it all seems a bit complex, no need to stress. Savit Interactive has your back with our Local SEO services and Local Citation Building services. Contact us today at +1 (516) 628-7919 for a free consultation!

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