Since there were limited websites at the beginning of the internet, browsing the web was simple. However, as the internet grew in popularity, search engines were developed to help people locate the websites they were seeking more quickly. When you put a term into a search engine, it was connected to web pages that contained the keywords in your query.
To decide if your site is suitable to present as a search result, Google now considers numerous criteria both on and off your site. Your digital brand is made up of factors, each of which has a distinct value that the search engine aggregates to provide results. This then impacts whether or not you appear as the first result in a Google search.
What is Local SEO?
Local SEO refers to a search engine optimization approach that improves the visibility of your business in Google’s Local search results, as well as other search engines like Bing, Apple Maps, Yelp etc. Local SEO can be quite beneficial to any company that has a physical address or one that services a specific geographic region. It can help you develop your business if you search the internet for any relevant keywords connected to your business.
How does Local SEO work?
Local SEO functions similarly to the standard Google search on a high level. Whenever someone conducts a search, Google searches its database to get the most relevant results. Local SEO is distinct in that Google ranks local search results using a separate set of ranking criteria. Here are some unique ranking signals that Google uses for Local SEO:
- The search location
- The social media shares
- The Google Maps star rating for the business
- Online review sentiments
- The presence of a Google My Business profile
- Google My Business profile keywords
- Keywords in online reviews
- The “check-in” numbers at the location
Difference between Local SEO and Google Ranks
Google ranks thousands of websites using a variety of processes known as algorithms. When you Google anything, an algorithm searches the index and delivers a list of websites in the organic results that suit your search. Those results are picked and ordered based on inbound links’ relevancy, importance, as well as popularity.
To decide whether websites have information connected to your search, the algorithm considers a variety of on-site and off-site criteria. All relevant websites are included in the list, which will then be sorted according to their importance. The algorithm evaluates which sites have the most relevant answer for your search query based on numerous on-site and off-site variables, and those websites are then placed at the top of the search results.
Local Search is different because it goes a step further. Google discovered that consumers looking for specific types of local businesses want results from their nearby region after monitoring user behavior throughout billions of searches. This is the reason Google’s local search algorithm incorporates a proximity component, which is a sophisticated way of stating that whenever you search for a local term, Google considers your location.
The Map Pack
The Map Pack, which is also referred to as The Local Pack, is a collection of three local company results, each with a Google Maps map showing their locations. When you search for “Perth web design agency,” for example, Google displays a Map Pack at the top of the page, which features Exit Digital Marketing Agency as one of the three options. Below that are the “normal” search results. This is crucial to remember while conducting keyword research for your local business.
Some ranking variables such as backlinks, can help you rank higher in both local and conventional organic search results. Others, though, such as NAPs (name, address and phone number) , are primarily useful for ranking in The Map Pack. Benchmarking your current position is one of the initial stages in any local SEO strategy. You want to check where you stand in The Map Pack, particularly. Also, keep an eye on your Map Pack rankings and how they change over time.
The Map Pack is the place to be if you’re a local business but you also don’t want to dismiss the typical local results entirely. Since most local searches have a high commercial purpose, ranking in the local search engine page results is also worthwhile. Unlike the Map Pack results, the local results for every Google SERP are essentially the same. You need to also include anything else related to on-page SEO and have the keyword in your URL and title tag to make sure that your website is optimized for local organic rankings.
How to improve your local SEO
Whereas the local map pack appears in the normal Google organic search results, the primary Google search results for the local map pack and local ranking results are powered by different algorithms. There is the option of appearing in both the primary organic search results as well as the local map pack as a local company.
Some factors that you should consider to improve your local SEO are links to popular local things and producing localized content. You should also create local landing pages for your business location that feature not just your business name but also your business phone number and address. You should also optimize your Meta description, title tags and follow other SEO best practices.
Factors based on location such as getting a Google My Business listing, local citations, and review signals which local customers generally publish, are also taken into account in your local SEO rankings, and as a result, you should include them in efforts to improve your local SEO.
You can now begin to focus on improving your site’s digital presence in the local focused search environment when you’ve attained a better grasp of Local SEO basics and also how Google ranks local search results. As a consequence, your business will appear higher on the results page, allowing more prospective customers to discover you.