Google maps and local SEO are two trends making quite a splash in 2015. Digital marketing calls for us to explore options beyond just the mere website. Today, we have to optimize Google maps and local SEO. With the recent July 2014 release of Google’s Pigeon algorithm update, it is more important than ever to optimize Google maps and put more emphasis on local SEO, which are important in increasing website rankings. In fact, some listings like Yelp will rank above the business’s own website. Here’s what you need to know about Google Maps and local SEO in 2015:
1. Set Up Your Google Business Account
Always make sure your information is correct on your listing. Incorrect information could hurt your leads and sales conversions. Take a look at Google My Business to ensure that the information listed on Google maps is correct. When your information is accurate and complete, you’re more likely to get the kind of traffic that you need. It’s free and if you’re signed up and your account is verified with Google Places or Google+, you’re more likely to have your information transferred to Google My Business.
2. Set Up Your Yelp Account
You should always establish your business listing on Yelp. You should claim your business listing and keep your information up to date. Always respond to reviews that are listed to develop a loyal following. Yelp will also allow you to upload photos to make your listing more appealing. Yelp is one of the most popular consumer review sites available. Thus, it’s important to have accurate information online.
3. Always Optimize Your Listing
Optimization is an important aspect of claiming your listings. Your information should be verified and optimized to ensure your ranking increases. It’s important to add photos, contact information, hours of operation, and your URL. This information can be added to make your listing more attractive to people searching for the products or services you offer. Promotional offers are some of the most popular ways to make the listing more attractive.
4. Gather Reviews
You should gather reviews on your listings and respond to them immediately. Reviews can be generated through a few methods. If you simply ask for them, it won’t be as effective. Always solicit reviews from your customers as they come in and offer incentives to those people who offer reviews to your business. Most people discourage soliciting for reviews but soliciting a few shouldn’t diminish the quality of the information presented.
5. Always Interact With Customers Online
Respond to every review on your site whether it’s positive or negative. A simple thank you or a promotional gift is all that’s required for the positive reviews unless there is a question. The negative reviews should be addressed promptly to avoid the negativity spreading like wildfire. Some customers may never be satisfied, but if you do your best to respond and rectify the situation, you’re likely to save most of your business.
What You Should Expect in the Future From Google Maps and Local SEO
It’s so important that you keep your Google Maps and local SEO optimized. Why? Businesses listed on page two of the search results are less likely to be chosen than on the first page of search engine results. This will ensure that you get maximum exposure and more opportunities to make sales conversions.
Local SEO is important because more people are searching online and buying online locally than ever before. That’s why it’s important to ensure that you have a good plan for local search. Otherwise, you’ll end up losing business because people don’t know that your organization exists.
Keep in mind that this optimization is a dynamic process. You cannot optimize it once and forget about it for the lifetime of your listing. You should be continually updating your listing and optimizing it for the best results. Hire a professional if you’re not sure how to achieve a higher website ranking position.