Many Clients have expressed interest in improving their rankings in the local results listing that often appears at the top of search results. An earlier post I wrote covered adding your website to the local results listing, and so this post will hopefully shed some light on improving your rankings. The things you can do break down into a couple different categories:
- Completing your Google Local Business Centre profile
- Getting your website listed and mentioned on other websites and directories
Completing Your Google Local Business Centre Profile
If you haven't already done so, the first step is to claim your website in Google's local business centre and complete the verification process. You'll then want to fill in as much of your profile as possible including adding photos/videos, selecting the appropriate categories, using keyword-rich description text and more. Be sure to ask your Clients to review your business under your local business centre listing too!
1-800 numbers are great, but your local business centre listing is not the place for them. It's important to use a phone number with a local area code in your local business centre listing as this is one of the factors Google checks. Also, ensure that your phone number on your profile matches your phone number on your website. If you have a Yellowpages listing, it should match there too!
To summarize the steps to completing your profile:
- Claim, verify and update your profile
- Upload photos and videos to your profile
- Request that your Clients complete reviews of your business under your listing
Getting Your Website Listed and Mentioned on Other Websites and Directories
Google will also comb through the web and keep track of mentions of your business on other websites and directories. These mentions will be listed under your local business listing. The more mentions in respectable places (spam sites won't count for much!) your business receives, the better your ranking will likely be.
Where are these places you might ask? Carrie Hill at SearchEngineLand.com has a great article on them and so I direct you to her article at http://searchengineland.com/secret-sauce-leverage-outside-listings-to-help-local-rankings-41905 for more detail. A few of the places she mentioned include:
- Flickr Galleries
- Youtube Channel
- Review Sites
- Craigs List
- User Content