Search engine users have commitment issues. People want to know what and where the best businesses are without first having to settle with just any dentist, restaurant, salon or anything else people are searching for. So naturally, local searches are taking over Google. In response to this peak in local searches, Google launched Google Places in 2009 as an Internet marketing tool to display small businesses’ basic information. More recently however, Google+ Local has replaced Google Places as the central local search site. According to the Google Official Blog, the most notable changes include the integration of Google+ Local into other products (Search, Map, etc.) as well as free Zagat reviews.
If you are a business owner, chances are you are still currently managing your information through Google My Business until the updates and benefits will most likely begin for that as well. Luckily, web marketing advice for a local listing page is the same regardless of the Google Places/Google+ Local integration. There are some important things to keep in mind when optimizing your listing page, including search engine marketing, web design and simply thinking as a prospective client would. Here are some quick things to know when optimizing your Google+ Local Page:
Less is more; don’t overstuff your keywords or place your listing under countless categories. Keeping your information succinct and make sure all of the information that is asked of you is filled out. This will also help increase your rank in organic search results. Clearly and briefly state some facts about your business as well.
Be SEO conscious
Add appropriate keywords to build search engine optimization. Do some research or consult a web design firm to see what search engine users are typing in to find your page or similar services. However avoid black hat SEO such as over stuffing keywords or adding irrelevant categories.
Optimize your content; add pictures, keep the page constantly updated, and fill out all of the information to keep your page fresh. Also, encourage customers to visit the page and leave reviews. Social bookmarking and adding links to your business’s social media sites are also a great way to interact with clients. An un-updated empty page with nothing but a phone number is uninviting and can reflect poorly on your business’s interest in your customers. By having a well-kept Google+ Local page with a user-friendly design, potential customers will be drawn to your business over other local ones.
Sell your strengths
Take a moment to include your specialties, offers, or anything else that makes your business stand out over other local ones. Be unique without bogging down your page with unnecessary clutter.
By using best practice SEO and considering the perspective of your clients, an optimal Google+ page will be engaging and informative will simultaneously raising your rank on search engines.