Local Search Ranking Factors - OMS Denver 2011


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Local Search Ranking Factors Presentation delivered by Mike Belasco at OMS Denver 2011.

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  • You may have one even if you didn’t create it. Make it say what you want it to say about your business.
  • Like education, training, experience, professional memberships, certifications, awards, etc
  • Reviews are exactly what people looking for a local business want, so reviews influence Google Maps results.
  • Actually look at all of these pages to: Verify information is correct Find opportunities (Upgrade a free listing, find a place people can review you, etc.)
  • Local Search Ranking Factors - OMS Denver 2011

    1. 1. Local Search Ranking Factors OMS Denver 2011 @belasco / @seoverflow
    2. 2. Agenda <ul><li>What Is Local Search and Why Is It Important? </li></ul><ul><li>Optimizing Your Website For Local </li></ul><ul><li>Optimizing Your Place Page </li></ul><ul><li>Off Place Page and Off Site Local Search Optimization (Citations, Reviews, Data Confusion) </li></ul>
    3. 3. What is Local Search?
    4. 4. <ul><li>Local Search is any search made with the goal of finding something in a specific geographic area. </li></ul><ul><li>This is known as searching with local intent . </li></ul>What Exactly is Local Search?
    5. 5. <ul><li>Essentially, anything that you would traditionally look for in the print Yellow Pages becomes a Local Search when it is conducted online. </li></ul>What Exactly is Local Search?
    6. 6. <ul><li>70% Percentage of people who go online FIRST when looking for local business information </li></ul><ul><ul><li>73% </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Percentage of online activity is related to local content (Google - May, 2007) </li></ul></ul>Why is Local Search So Important?
    7. 7. <ul><li>ROBO – Research online, buy offline </li></ul><ul><ul><li>82% of local searchers follow up offline via an in-store visit, phone call or purchase (TMP / comScore) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>90% of online commercial searches result in offline bricks and mortar purchases (proprietary research / comScore) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>66% of Americans use online local search, like Google local search to locate local businesses (TMP / comScore) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>54% of Americans have substituted the internet and local search for phone books (comScore networks) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>43% of search engine users are seeking a local merchant to buy something offline. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>http://www.thelocalone.com/why.htm </li></ul>Why is Local Search So Important?
    8. 8. Have You Noticed Something Different?
    9. 9. Old Google Vs. New Google
    10. 10. Blended Vs Pure Google Results @belasco / @seoverflow http://www.davidmihm.com/blended-vs-pure-local-search.shtml
    11. 11. Anatomy Of A Blended Result @belasco / @seoverflow Link To Website (website title tag or biz name) Address and Phone Number Website Title Tag, Meta Description or Google Places Description Star rating and link to Place Page Link To Place Page Map Marker in alpha order. Snippet from a review Direct link to reviews on other websites
    12. 12. Google Knows Where You Are
    13. 13. Local Search Ranking Tips
    14. 14. Local Search Ranking Factors @belasco / @seoverflow http://www.davidmihm.com/local-search-ranking-factors.shtml
    15. 15. Local Search Ranking Factors @belasco / @seoverflow http://www.davidmihm.com/local-search-ranking-factors.shtml
    16. 16. Optimize Your Website For Local Now More Important Than Ever
    17. 17. <ul><li>All ‘traditional’ SEO best practices </li></ul><ul><li>Include business name, address, and phone number on every page (footer) is fine. </li></ul><ul><li>Include Business Keyword Location | Business Name in the title tag of your homepage </li></ul><ul><li>Create a page for each physical location </li></ul>Optimize Your Website For Local
    18. 18. <ul><li>Encode your business name, address and phone number in Schema.org format (http://www.schema.org/LocalBusiness) </li></ul><ul><li>Encode reviews, testimonials and ratings in Schema.org Review Format (http://www.schema.org/Review) </li></ul><ul><li>Create and upload a GeoSitemap (http://www.mygeoposition.com/) </li></ul><ul><li>Embed Geo Metatags in the head of your HTML code ( www.mygeoposition.com/ ) </li></ul><ul><li>Embed a Google Map of your location on your contact page </li></ul>Advanced On-page Local SEO
    19. 19. <ul><li>Get powerful, authoritative, local (if possible) links to your website </li></ul><ul><li>Check your competitors links using www.opensitexplorer.org </li></ul><ul><li>Sponsor local events and organizations </li></ul><ul><li>Get listed in all local directory websites </li></ul><ul><li>Start a PR campaign for press coverage </li></ul>Link Building For Local @belasco / @seoverflow
    20. 20. Optimizing Your Google Places Listing
    21. 21. Get a Google Maps Listing
    22. 22. <ul><li>Use your main keyword phrase and complementary terms in your profile descriptions </li></ul><ul><li>Grab the long tail by including: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Your products and services </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The brands you carry </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The locations you serve </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Anything else important in your niche </li></ul></ul>Optimize Your Places Listing
    23. 23. Complete Your Listing @belasco / @seoverflow
    24. 24. Upload Photos and Videos @belasco / @seoverflow
    25. 25. <ul><li>Hi </li></ul><ul><li>HINT: Use LocalSearchToolKit.com </li></ul>Choose The Right Categories @belasco / @seoverflow
    26. 26. Create Coupons (Offers) @belasco / @seoverflow
    27. 27. <ul><li>Use Additional Details to specify keyword rich content about your business </li></ul>Optimize Your Places Listing
    28. 28. <ul><li>Reasonable Expectations </li></ul><ul><ul><li>It’s unreasonable to think you should rank in Local Search for places where you are not located. (Refer to the new guidelines.) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>If you want to rank for places where you are not located, but where you do business, it’s best to concentrate on optimizing your website for those terms. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Consider PPC ads for additional locations. </li></ul></ul>Multiple Locations
    29. 29. Citations
    30. 30. <ul><li>Citations are cites or mentions of your business on web pages. </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>They do not have to contain a link. </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>They do not have to contain location information. </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Citations from trusted local sources have more impact than others. </li></ul></ul></ul></ul>Citations
    31. 31. <ul><li>Get citations from the right sources </li></ul><ul><ul><li>There’s increased agreement on the importance of citations. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The right sources probably vary by industry. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>There are some standard, trusted sources that are probably good for everyone, like Superpages, BBB and Yelp. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Citations from hyper local sources may be gaining in influence. </li></ul></ul>Citations
    32. 32. Competitors Citations @belasco / @seoverflow
    33. 33. <ul><li>Uncover new sources for citations by: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Looking at the citations your competitors have and seeing if you can get them in the same places. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Looking at the citations businesses like yours in other areas have. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Look at the citations of businesses related to yours. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>HINT: USE LOCALSEARCHTOOLKIT.COM </li></ul></ul>Citations
    34. 34. Reviews
    35. 35. <ul><li>Google thinks reviews are exactly what people looking for a local business want to see. </li></ul>Get Reviews
    36. 36. <ul><li>Google pulls reviews from all across the web </li></ul><ul><li>Niches have different trusted review srcs. </li></ul>The More Reviews, the Better!
    37. 37. <ul><li>Uncover new sources for reviews by: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Looking at the reviews your competitors have and seeing if you can get them in the same places. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Looking at the reviews businesses like yours in other areas have. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Look at the reviews of businesses related to yours. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>HINT: USE LOCALSEARCHTOOLKIT.COM </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Another HINT: Get Keywords used in your reviews </li></ul></ul>Reviews
    38. 38. Subtly Encourage Reviews
    39. 39. Eliminate Data Confusion
    40. 40. <ul><li>Data Confusion in regards to local search simply means there are inconsistencies with the core business data (name, address, phone number NAP) online. </li></ul><ul><li>Data Confusion is the primary reason most of the clients who call us do not rank well in Local Search results </li></ul><ul><li>Data Confusion is the most overlooked local search ranking factor </li></ul>Don’t Forget Your NAP
    41. 41. <ul><li>Careless submissions and data entry </li></ul><ul><li>Moving business location </li></ul><ul><li>Changing phone numbers </li></ul><ul><li>Promoting non-existent locations </li></ul><ul><li>Read more here: </li></ul><ul><li>http://www.seoverflow.com/local-seo/typical-causes-of-data-confusion-in-local-search/ </li></ul>What Causes Data Confusion?
    42. 42. <ul><li>7-pack results for ‘San Francisco Bakeries’ </li></ul>Analysis Of A 7 Pack
    43. 43. <ul><li>How?: </li></ul><ul><li>Search for your biz name </li></ul><ul><li>Search for your biz address </li></ul><ul><li>Search for your biz phone number </li></ul><ul><li>Look at your citations in Maps </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t forget to search for things which are not obvious such as an extra phone number or old address </li></ul>Check for Data Confusion
    44. 44. <ul><li>Make sure to standardize information everywhere: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Use the same name, address and phone numbers everywhere online and offline </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Go to the sources of business data and standardize information there. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Check for location trust and correct discrepancies wherever you find them. </li></ul></ul>Standardization Builds Trust
    45. 45. <ul><li>Speaker Contact Info </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>303-905-1504 ext 1 </li></ul><ul><li>@belasco </li></ul><ul><li>Linkedin.com/in/miketheinternetguy </li></ul><ul><li>Mike Belasco </li></ul>Speaker Photo
    46. 46. <ul><li>Business Listing Quality </li></ul><ul><li>“ Business Listings in Local Business Center must have correct information about physical, local businesses, as they appear in the real world . Google reserves the right to suspend access to Local Business Center or to other Google Services to individuals or businesses violating these guidelines.” </li></ul><ul><li>http://maps.google.com/support/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=107528 </li></ul>Places Listing Guidelines
    47. 47. <ul><li>Business Name Spam </li></ul><ul><li>“ Represent your business exactly as it appears in the offline world. The name on Google Maps should match the business name, as should the address, phone number and website. Do not attempt to manipulate search results by adding extraneous keywords or a description of your business into the business name.” </li></ul>Places Listing Guidelines
    48. 48. <ul><li>Physical Location Spam </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Do not create listings at locations where the business does not physically exist. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>PO Boxes do not count as physical locations. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The precise address for the business must be provided in place of broad city names or cross-streets.” </li></ul></ul>Places Listing Guidelines
    49. 49. <ul><li>Multiple Location Spam </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Do not create more than one listing for each business location, either in a single account or multiple accounts. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Businesses that operate in a service area as opposed to a single location should not create a listing for every city they service. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Service area businesses should create one listing for the central office of the business only. </li></ul></ul>Places Listing Guidelines
    50. 50. <ul><li>Best Practices </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Use a shared, business email account, if multiple users will be updating your business listing. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>If possible, use an email account with a domain that matches your business URL. For example, if your business website is www.giraffetoys.com, a matching email address would be you@giraffetoys.com.” </li></ul></ul>Places Listing Guidelines