Making the most out of Google +Local, for a Regional Campaign.
After a captivating presentation focusing on +Local, and the effect it has on a Regional SEO Campaign at this year’s SearchLove by David Mihm, the President & CEO of GetListed.org. I thought I’d take a look into the depths of +Local, and how to maximise it within a Regional campaign.
Over the past few years, we’ve watched the search result pages presented by Google become more complex, including the release of Blended Place search; which entwined organic results, and Local Business from Google Places.
With the introduction of Google’s’ latest algorithm updates, with the major ones being Panda , Penguin, and also the Venice Update, this has massively affected search results . The Venice Update which was released in February focused massively on Local SEO. Simply, Google must be able to identify your location, in order to blend your +Local Page. Google stated;
“Improvements to ranking for local search results. [launch codename “Venice”] This improvement improves the triggering of Local Universal results by relying more on the ranking of our main search results as a signal.
“Improved local results. We launched a new system to find results from a user’s city more reliably. Now we’re better able to detect when both queries and documents are local to the user.”
Search “Divorce Attorney” with location set to Las Vegas.
As you can see, even though the search was only “Divorce Attorney” the results are localised due to the Location being Set to Las Vegas.
After this update, it was more important than ever to ensure that Google can identify your location. It is not only important for Google to know your location for a regional campaign, but for potential clients also. For example, if a customer is looking for a company providing emergency boiler repairs, they will more than likely be looking for a local plumber. Put it this way, would you want to wait for a plumber to travel all the way from Wales, to your home in London? No – because not only would the call out charge be extortionate but you’d probably have to wait a day or two.
With the astonishing success of Google +, now having over 400 million members, Google + Local was released on May the 30th and is the newest element in Google’s attempt at a social platform. Creating a Places page has now become a fundamental part of promoting a local business.
So the big question is…How do I rank and become successful with Google+ Local?
Reviews are increasingly valuable, and can help build up great brand reputation. David Mihm explained that you don’t always need hundreds to compete with competitors – but 3 or 4 high quality links are generally going to get to the top of the rankings. He also explained the importance of building relationships with power reviews, by searching on relevant and industry specific twitter accounts.
Citations, Citations, Citations…
This has become an important factor for Local SEO. The more citations you have, the more popular the business will appear to Google. Niche citations can often be the distinctive factor for a small business. If the situation has difficulties regarding citations, you more than certainly need to clean up your Data. You can do this by searching for duplicated at Google Maps, and then clicking “report the Problem”, then create a strong MapMarker account and claim bad Listings. But most importantly – location prominence; it is important that your site has at least one awesome link or citation.
Multiple Business Locations? No Problem!
If a business is has multiple locations, each store should have its own page. This is a key element in successful maximising +Local. This will allow Google to pick up a single location on a search.
Give PPC a try!
Adding a Local Paid Search Campaign, to your local search marketing strategy not only offers small businesses a chance to drive high quality and targeted traffic, but local paid search also helps businesses determine which keywords will be the most effective for targeting an organic campaign!
Thank you for reading, feel free to leave any feedback!