A guest post by Tom Buckland of Ghost Marketing, an SEO consultant based in Cardiff. UK.
Citations seem to be the talking point of local seo at the moment, with 100 citations from a service such as PBNbutler getting you to rank for any local search term in the Google 7-pack?.Except sometimes they just dont.
There is so much more to ranking in the google map listing than just citations. But the most important factor is the connection between the below items and not how they look individually:
- Your Google business page
- Your Website
- Your Citation Sources
Most of you will already know this so I?m just going to bullet point the key things to do when creating a Google business listing:
- Use what your business name is known as (on the web) NOT what you want to call yourself
- Verify the business and check how the address is formatted in the VERIFIED listing as it can change once verified. E.g. Street can become ST.
- Don?t build citations until your listing is live (and verified.)
- Add all the relevant categories your business is in. For example a web design company should include ?internet marketing services? ?marketing agency? and ?graphic design? if they also offer those services.
- Add an introduction which includes what your business does BUT do not repeat your business?s location or categories it is in. This is your chance to use your LSI keywords and any variations.
- Embed a map of your business in the footer.
- Add your business location in the footer in schema mark up (exactly as it?s found on the Google business page.)
- Add GEO-targeted images to your Google business page with full image properties (screenshot below) to target your category ? locational keyword.
- Include your full address and longitude and latitude figures in the comments section.
- Create a page on your website to target the specific category you are trying to rank for. For example domain.com/internet-marketing-services/
- Use the same geo-targeted images that are on the Google business page on the relevant pages on your website. For example, the image targeting ?internet marketing services London? goes on the .com/internet-marketing-services/ page.
- When building citations ensure you use the geo-targeted images and a unique description including your category type (as it?s seen on your Google business page.)
- If possible add your longitude and latitude figures and embed a map if possible too. E.g. Like on My local services business directory
These factors make up a huge proportion to the local seo game and ranking in the 3 or 7-pack. But obviously they are not everything. Links still play a huge role and there is an increasingly common theme of reviewed businesses ranking higher, so be sure to factor this into your google map promotions.