by: Dana Chen Fischer
Last post I mentioned some of the factors Google uses to determine how high in the listing a business will appear when someone searches for a local business. We mentioned some on-site things you can use to make sure you appear towards the top of the list.
Now I'll mention some off-site ways you can influence your company's Google rank - a local search marketing campaign using Google Map.
- Claim your listing on Google Map – use Google’s local business center to claim the listing.
- Complete the business listing information – make sure you are listed under the correct category and be consistent with the company name, address, etc.
- Claim your listing through similar services such as Yahoo and Bing.
- Upload (and constantly update) information about your business and set up coupons and other promotions.
- Include photos and videos in your descriptions - Google has begun testing some enhanced features that will display your photo/video thumbnail on the map as well as next to your listing. This will help your company stand out.
- Submit your company’s information to directories that are associated with local businesses (Info USA, Yahoo Business Directory, DMOZ, etc.) since they are aggregator.
On your site, you can make some additions to your HTML code and content that will also drive up your ranking in Google:
- On your website make sure your domain/web page URL include locations that you target.
- Make sure your web page title tag and description tag include the locations (i.e. cities, areas, etc.) that you target.
- Make sure your website has dedicated pages that display the company name, address, and maps of the company’s location. Also the map should link to your Google local map (on the local business results) page.
- Get links from authority sites; relevant vertical authority sites are the best.
- Mine your competitors’ links and see if you can establish the same links.
It’s a time consuming, but surely rewarding, process. In addition to other search traffic, Google local maps will drive many qualified local leads to your website. With strong customer reviews and ratings, you should get a much higher conversion rate as well.