6 Ways To Get Your Google Places Page to Rank Higher

Whether it’s your own company or a client’s business, having a Google Places page is key to visibility within Google. In 2009, Google was in the deal room with Yelp to purchase the local review site but the deal fell through. A few months ago, Google revealed their own “Yelp-like” product, Hotpot. Google is making a big push into the local market with plenty of attention going to location-based applications (such as Foursquare, Facebook Places) it is important that you are maximizing on your own visibility within the most popular search engine especially now that Google is placing more of an emphasis on local results and blending them with organic search results.

We recently had a chance to hear local search guru, David Mihm discuss the ins and outs of local search that are useful for organizations of any size.

Here are 6 Ways To Get Your Google Places Page to Rank Higher:

  1. Claim your listing if you haven’t. How can you tell if it is claimed? Complete a search in Google Maps, that is the easiest and quickest way to locate your listing. Look in the upper right corner about a quarter of the way down the page (see image below). If your place exists and is not claimed, go through the steps to claim and verify it – then read the rest of this post ;).
    verifying your listing in google
  2. Reviews are more important thank you think(we’ll keep hitting you over the head with this one over and over). Reviews are one of the key factors that can help your ranking in search engine results pages (SERPs) as well as the local listing results that show up within the SERP.Tip: Put together a strategy to get a steady flow of reviews coming in monthly rather than a bunch all at once and then nothing at all. Google likes to see consistency. One way to do this is through your social media outlets. Another thing to do is if you use Groupon or any coupon sites try to capture the emails of those who purchased and follow up with them to have them write a review of their experience. Of course we’d all like positive reviews, but as long as you have a good product and good service you should receive good reviews.
  3. When claiming your business make sure your title is representative of your business– do not stuff it with keywords. You want to use descriptive words. You might be able to get away with one or two keywords depending on your company, but remember the algorithm Google uses for local results is not the same as the one used for organic results.
  4. YouTube video’s may help your rank so if you have them add them to your local listing. Also fill it with images. Tip: To optimize your videos add a caption file to your videos, title and description.
  5. Use the maximum number of description categories available (currently 4), use one default category and then create custom categories for the remaining fields. When creating a custom category try using the statement “my business is a [fill in the blank]” as your format. Do not put any geographical terms in as a category- that’s a big no-no.
  6. Multiple branches and/or specialty divisions with the same address should have individual pages. If your business is a large business with multiple branches or specialties all at the same address and there are more areas than categories, don’t worry you can list them separately. For example, if your business is a hospital with different specialty areas – each one of those specialties can have its own Google Places page as long as each area has a different phone number they can and should be created and listed individually.

A big thanks to David Mihm for his support and sharing this great information with us.


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