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:
- – 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.