Domain Authority and Links

Local Search Ranking

Search Engine Marketers

Each year, Moz conducts a study of the top Local Search Ranking Factors by interviewing several experienced search engine marketers. The study is conducted in four different parts:

Domain Authority & Links

Ranking Factors

  • – General ranking factors
  • – Specific ranking factors
  • – Local pack ranking factors
  • – Negative ranking factors

What are the most important parts of each of these factor groups?

General Ranking Factors

  • – Signals that relate to your business (how close you are to the user, your categories)
  • – Signals that relate to your website content (keywords in titles, your name, address, and phone number)
  • – Signals that relate to links to your website (linking domain authority, anchor text)
  • – Citations that your website has gotten on external sites
  • – User behavior signals (clicks-to-call, clickthroughs, and so on)
  • – A factor whose importance is declining: social signals

Local Organic Ranking Factors

The following are the most important local organic ranking signals:

  • – Click-through rate from search results
  • – Having high-quality inbound links
  • – Having your city and state in your GMB Landing Page Title
  • – Having an authoritative web domain
  • – Having relevant keywords that pertain to your domain content

Note: Star ratings and rankings can be important to users, but they don’t really matter in terms of your search ranking.

Local Pack Ranking Factors

  • – Correct GMB category associations
  • – Having a physical address in the city a user is searching for
  • – Being in close proximity to the search user’s location
  • – Having high-quality, authoritative, and consistent structured citations

Note: Having local keywords in your domain name doesn’t really help all that much.

Negative Ranking Factors

You can majorly damage your ranking by:

  • – Having malware on your site
  • – Faking your business address
  • – Having GMB location violation reports
  • – Having the wrong category listed for your business
  • – Having different business names, addresses, and phone numbers listed on various websites

Bottom line: Incorrect business information, whether intentional falsehood or accidental mistake, will be very detrimental to your Google ranking.

These nuggets of information are only a portion of what Moz’s study reveals. If you’d like to read more, check out the full study here.

In the meantime, one thing is certain: if you cater to the user’s needs and make it easy to find your business and find out more about it, you will be setting yourself up for success.

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