Ranking obtaining a higher ranking on your local Businesses is a well on monumental for business owners. Observations suggest that more and more business owners are now taking the search engine ranking seriously to reach a local audience every day. Tribunal reports suggest that almost 97% of people use online learning compared to other learning platforms. 

The old-age marketing technique “word of mouth” is fading over the years. Not only do people look up online when it comes to purchasing products/services, but they also learn about local businesses online. Local audiences conduct almost 84% of Google searches based on local keywords. So if you are looking to target a local audience, SEO works wonders for Business. 

Believe it or not, people are searching for more than just funny memes and pictures of cats – and it has enormous implications for Local Businesses.

Two Key Ways Used for Local Searches

One primary way to perform local searches is directly on Google Maps within a browser or from the Google Maps app. 

Google map searches are displayed for up to 20 locations on the map; you can find the searches on the left hand sidebar. However, not all searches will be relatable, but 70% will be relevant business websites fetched from Google Bots. Now, the question here is how does that 70% end up in searches? Here is where ranking on Google My Business Listing is working as a critical ranking factor. 

When it comes to ranking in Google Maps, one thing is prominent: the local pack (sometimes called the “snack pack”). 

Now, What is Local Pack? Well, Google rolled out a rich snippet years ago just to assist people to find local businesses that match their search queries perfectly. The local pack displays 3 top local businesses with an occasional advertisement squeezed in.

Displayed Searches on Local Pack

Whether you know the term it is called with; you’ve mostly seen and interacted with a local pack while browsing. Every time searcher uses keywords identified as local intent; Google will display the top Local Pack.

1. Local Specific Searches

In terms of technicality, every time a searcher uses keywords with a specific city or region in search, Google will identify it as a local pack.

For Example; Plumbing services in Atlanta, GA, will almost always trigger the map. Google’s local map will specifically display without the user specifying a city.

2. Local Intent Searches

Google Smartness cannot be doubted. Google exactly knows when a searcher is looking for a local result, even if they don’t specify.

Example with an informational search; “how to cook Alfredo Pasta,” you don’t need recipes from a local business; any recipe will do. However, on the other hand, for a transactional search like, “where can I buy an Alferado Pasta,” Google will recognize you require a local business.

Factors that Affects Ranking on Google Map​

Many different factors affect the business ranking on Google map. Some of the factors depend specifically on Industries, and others on locations, and more. Here’s we highlight a shortlist of the top 5 factors based on a yearly study by Moz:

What factors affect your Google Maps rankings?

6 Steps that will Help you Rank Higher on Google Maps

1. Choose the Best Primary Category

This factor is important to consider for all Business owners. When you set your business profile on Google, it is essential to select the best category; you may find it an unimportant factor for time, but putting the right primary category carries much more weight compared to your secondary category.

We explain it with examples to clear your knowledge of the Primary Category. Recently one of our clients belonging to the Plumbing Industry came with a Google profile with the Primary category of “Corporate Office” for years.

They had no idea how this category alone was crushing their ranking opportunity in Local Search of Plumbing. Our experts highlighted the error, and with a simple category update, They gain higher visibility on Google Maps.

This is a very simple decision for Businesses that practice in a single location, such as “Personal injury attorney.”

However, when it comes to a law firm based on many attorneys practicing a variety of areas, it gets tough to make a decision. Here are few tips to think through if your business could fall into multiple categories:

2. Update Profile with High-Quality Visuals

Google My Business allows you to add amazing visuals to show off your business products/services to consumers, but it’s up to you the quality to update. According to surveys, 60% of consumers are more attracted to local results of Business that result in Good quality images.

Here are some things you should consider;

3. Business Needs Quality Google Reviews

Reviews play a significant role in Small Businesses growth in 2021. Not only do reviews play a big role in local SEO, but they also built authority among your customers. 86% of consumers depend on local businesses reviews before making a purchase. Moreover, 57% of consumers tend to choose a business with more than a 4-star rating on Google.

Now, how can you get more reviews on your Business profile? Consider your consumer cycle, and ask for a review. It can be done in a written letter, an email, or a reputation management service.

Google reviews of your business help your consumer make fast decisions. Any business with 50 positive reviews on its profile will have higher consumer conversation than a business with 20 reviews. If you have less google reviews, even if you offer excellent services, you will have a lower conversion rate than your competitors.

What’s a quality review? A review that contains specifics of what services you provided. Bonus points if your reviewer uses a relevant keyword–Google likes this.

Google often pulls comments and phrases out of Google reviews to give context to the user and help you rank for different queries.

4. Make Engaging Posts

For many posts is relatively a new feature in Google my Business. 

There are many simple ways to update your targeted audience with your recent offers, deals, news, products, or simply blogs you have just published. It’s important to add an image and a link to learn more. Every time you update a new offer, new deal, or roll out a new product, it’s important to post. This practice can benefit your business as marketers suggest; regular updates containing keywords help to improve your listing ranking on Google. 

5. Answer the Queries

Google My Business allows every visitor to come up with as many queries they have related to services/products on the business listing. Google also lets the community answer these questions.

These Queries need relevant answers, and for that, you need to be very vigilant in keeping a check on every new query as they come in. You cannot risk your query being answered falsely by someone else. And yet again, the activity is a positive ranking signal.

6. Take Advantage of Google Maps

Local Business Marketing can gain growth through many different approaches. One of which is to spend thousands of dollars on billboards, magazine ads, local television commercials, etc. However, in comparison to all marketing tactics, building a strong Google My Business profile is the best, as it takes only 30 minutes maximum of a month to update, and it is the cheapest tactic to gain visibility on Business.

Feel you have an optimized Google My Business listing but still not ranking well? Explore some of the other key local ranking factors and identify where you may be lacking:

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