Anyone that uses search engines or the internet has likely used Google Maps as a primary source to find local services, restaurants, or entertainment options. Ranking high on Google Maps and the Local Pack on Google (the top three local maps results) is key for a successful digital marketing campaign, which means that any business that doesn’t appear on Google Maps may have significant trouble driving online conversions.
Why should businesses care about Google Maps and local SEO? Well, let’s look at some of the most recent stats on digital marketing to paint a picture of how local SEO contributes to digital marketing success.
Currently, 13% of all internet searches are performed through Google Maps, according to recent marketing statistics curated by HubSpot. Even more searches are performed on Google in general. Estimates suggest that Google properties accounted for 90% of all internet search queries.
Earning high ranks on Google Maps and the local pack is essential for any business to successfully market their services and products in 2020. As more users rely on quick search results and optimized websites to make purchases, the need for businesses to rank well on Maps is crucial.
If your business is struggling to rank on Google Maps and the Local Pack, contact the Boston Web Marketing experts to help re-optimize your website for local SEO. Below, we’ll dive into the factors that you can, and can’t control, that help you rank higher on Maps results:
Contributed Content like reviews impact local SEO
Did you know that the photos, comments, reviews, and suggestions submitted by Google users help to determine your business’s rank on Google Maps? Recent updates from Google’ Keyword blog explain that the company has improved content policies in order to provide reliable reviews, suggestions, and photos that represent local businesses. The main focus of new content updates is for users to review and evaluate the experiences they had at nearby businesses:
To ensure that our map reflects the real world, we enable anyone with a Google account to contribute their local knowledge to approximately 200 million points of interest in Google Maps. In fact, everyday people submit more than 20 million contributions to Google Maps, from reviews and ratings to photos, answers to other users’ questions, address updates and more. Ultimately, this helps people everywhere make better decisions about where to eat and shop, or things to do and see.
Research has found that reviews and contributed content impact a business’s ranking. Businesses that have 4 or more stars on Google are more likely to earn “best [service provider] near me” keywords than competitors. Even though businesses can’t totally influence contributed content they can always incorporate reputation management to earn positive reviews and update their business information.
Optimized local Google My Business listings, websites impact ranking
Google’s primary aim as a search engine provider is to connect users to the most detailed, relevant, and thorough information for their needs. The company continually updates Google Maps rankings by using a business’s website, Google My Business listing, off-page citations, and other digital assets to rank businesses.
If you want to start ranking higher on Google Maps and the local pack, incorporate the following strategies to get started:
- Completely fill out your Google My Business profile and claim your listing if you haven’t already
- Make sure your website is mobile-friendly
- Optimize your website for site speed
- Have relevant content on your website with name, business, and phone number information filled out
- Write content to help your website rank higher
- Submit your website’s URL to other business directories that help Google identify your website’s services
- Attempt to curate positive reviews online and at your physical location
- Post frequently on social media platforms
Google Maps optimization is crucial to ensure that your website captures as many leads as possible. It is a long process to rank in the #1 spot, but an expert can help expedite the process for you!