When people search for businesses or places near their location on Google, they will see local results in various Google products, including Maps and Search. For example, if you search for “Italian restaurant” from your mobile device, you will probably see nearby restaurants that you would like to visit. If you want to improve your business’s local ranking, you should use Google Business Profile to claim and update your business information.
Here are some steps you can take to update your business information for better visibility:
- Enter complete data: Local results favor the most relevant results for each search. Therefore, businesses with complete and accurate information are easier to match with the right searches. Make sure you keep your information up-to-date as your business changes.
- Verify your locations: Verify your business locations so they’re more likely to show up in local search results across Google products, like Maps and Search.
- Keep your hours accurate: Update your business hours regularly, including when you open and close, and special hours for holidays and events. Accurate hours info lets shoppers know when you’re available and gives them confidence that your business will be open when they arrive.
- Manage & respond to reviews: Respond to reviews that users leave about your business. When you reply to reviews, it shows that you value your customers and their feedback. High-quality, positive reviews from your customers can improve your business visibility and increase the likelihood that a shopper will visit your location.
- Add photos: To showcase your goods and services and tell the story of your business, add photos to your Business Profile. Accurate and appealing pictures may also show shoppers that your business offers what they’re searching for.
- Add in-store products: If you run a retail business, you can show nearby shoppers what you sell by adding your in-store products to your Business Profile.
Google determines local ranking based on three factors:
- Relevance: Relevance refers to how well a local Business Profile matches what someone is searching for. Add complete and detailed business information to help Google better understand your business and match your profile to relevant searches.
- Distance: Distance considers how far each potential search result is from the location term used in a search. If a user doesn’t specify a location in their search, Google will calculate distance based on what it knows about their location.
- Prominence: Prominence refers to how well known a business is. Some places are more prominent in the offline world, and search results try to reflect this in local ranking. For example, famous museums, landmark hotels, or well-known store brands are also likely to be prominent in local search results. Prominence is also based on information that Google has about a business, from across the web, like links, articles, and directories. Google review count and review score factor into local search ranking. More reviews and positive ratings can improve your business’ local ranking. Your position in web results is also a factor, so search engine optimization (SEO) best practices apply.
It’s essential to keep in mind that there is no way to request or pay for a better local ranking on Google. Google tries to keep the search algorithm details confidential to make the ranking system as fair as possible for everyone. Therefore, focus on optimizing your Google Business Profile with complete and accurate information, and engage with your customers to increase your business’s local ranking.