6 Ways to Improve Visibility in Google Maps

You want to improve visibility for your business on Google Maps. Here are the 6 most important factors that you should focus on to achieve this.

 

1. Ensure your business information is accurate on your Google My Business (GMB) Listing

This is basic, you need to make sure all the fields in your GMB listing are accurate and truly reflect the physical attributes of your business location. At the very least you should ensure your Name, Address and Phone Number (NAP) NAP Information for every location you operate are included in your listing. Follow this up with adding further information such as

  • Opening Hours
  • URL of your webpage that lists contact information (consider tagging your URL to attribute acquisition to local visibility)
  • Photos – Include photos of the exterior building, interior reception and consider a 360 virtual tour if you are a retail store
  • Update Categories – Make sure you select the most relevant categories that are applicable to the specific location. Always have the primary category updated and use the ‘additional category’ to specify the particular USP of the respective location.
  • Brief Description – Google brought back the description this year to be presented on SERP. Use it! But don’t exploit it. Remember, no keyword spamming anywhere. You have up to 750 characters to work with and make sure it is relevant to the location and services offered at the respective location.
  • Update Special Dates – Commitment to data accuracy is highly regarded for local SEO. Ensure you always update special holiday dates. Use this option as required for the respective location.
  • Ensure your pin on the map is accurate, this informs Google of the latitude and longitude upon submission.

Bottomline – Your NAP information and any listing content should be specific to the respective office/store location and not your brand.

 

google my business example

 

Think of your customers – the objective should be to make their lives easy to find your store/office easily and be able to confirm that they arrive at the right location when they plan to visit you. The higher number of times your customers use Google to find your store/office location, the better chance of increasing your visibility.

 

2. Have Local Landing Pages on your website

Google uses signals from your own website and matches it to what is presented in the GMB listing. If you have multiple offices or stores that your customers can visit, make sure you have a landing page for each of them. Ensure that your NAP Information along with opening hours and location specific content is published on the location landing page [LLP].

With the page and content published, embark on marking the NAP information with structured data for local business or organisation as relevant to your business. This is very important and helps voice search as well.

Oh, and don’t forget to publish the map on your LLP with a link for the user to open a new tab/window or fire the Maps app on their phone to get directions to your office/store location.

 

3. Don’t overthink! It doesn’t help anyone.

I’ve seen Google Business Listings that stuff their keyword in the ‘Name’ field of the listing. Seriously, this is of no value to your user and an update from Google or a Google user will eliminate it anyways. Save yourself the trouble of overdoing it! It’s not required.

If you have 2 offices/stores, one in the Sydney CBD and another in North Sydney, you don’t have to put the location or suburb in the name field. It’s not the name of your business, is it? The NAP information in the GMB listing and on your LLP will make it very obvious and Google’s local algorithms that are almost always being updated are smart enough to identify the difference.

 

4. Look out for location citations and mentions

What is link building for local SEO, you ask? Here it is. Gone are the days where you need to worry about anchor text (in fact it is now hazardous to think that way and am glad it is now). Do the below:

  • Make a list of all the good local listing directories you are aware of in your market.
  • Visit the local directories and evaluate the quality by usability and trustworthiness. Would you trust this website listing? Ask yourself this question.
  • Run an audit of all the listings you now have to ensure your NAP information is accurate on all the listings for each of your offices/stores.
  • Don’t forget there are other search engines. Make sure you have Bing Local up to date as well.
  • Following the citations audit, update them with accurate information

 

5. Have your customers and partners review you

Easier said than done, this could be the most challenging part of your effort to increase your visibility.

 

don't buy fake reviews

 

Put a strategy in place to show real review data in the following places:

  • Google My Business Listing
  • Location Landing Page [LLP]
  • 3rd Party Local Listing Directories such as Yelp, Yellow Pages, etc.

You’re probably hesitant to action this simply for the potential of a negative review that you may end up getting. Face it, don’t run. Should you receive a negative review, actively respond to the review and provide a working solution to the problem that your customer has faced and follow up with them to provide another review of their resolution experience. This narrates customer commitment and improves trust factors.

 

6. Leverage Posts & Stay on top of Google Local Updates

Google My Business Listing offers posts that you can use to publish at any time with relevant content and links. This is a great opportunity to promote any specials or news specific to the respective location. Tip: Setup a Posts calendar just as you would do for blog content or content calendar.

 

Google my business blog example

 

Keep abreast with algorithm specific to local search that occurs. At this time, you should be aware of major updates Possum & Hawk.

 

Having trouble being visible across Google and Google Maps? Get in contact with an expert today and we’ll help you out!

 

Need more knowledge on local SEO? Read our overview of SEO in 2018!

 

 

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