Going Local: How to rank in your region
Local search is a quickly developing aspect of SEO, as Google incorporates more personalisation into its SERPs based on the searcher’s location, while smartphones allow people’s position to be pinpointed via GPS.
But ensuring your website ranks highly for relevant nearby search queries can be harder than it sounds – in particular within Google Places results, where distance from the searcher alone is often the deciding factor in determining rankings.
While you can sometimes overcome this by ensuring your Google Places page is as detailed as possible, you might be left wondering whether doing so is a profitable way to spend your time – or your marketing budget.
There are alternatives, however; the most obvious of which is simply to invest more into improving your organic search ranking.
As ‘universal search’ sees more kinds of results vying for position on page one of the SERPs – from local listings to news articles, images and video content – that means fewer organic results are making it on to that first page.
Making it into the top five results, rather than the top ten, could mean the difference between a first and second-page ranking – and could help you to avoid needing to bid on location-specific PPC keywords for the long term.
Written by Rob Henry