Like every other social platform, Google has an algorithm to determine how businesses rank on results pages. When a customer searches for a product or service, it instantaneously ranks which results match best for that specific search. Google determines local results primarily based on three factors: relevance, distance, and prominence. This is how Google Determine Local Rankings.
Relevance refers to how well your Google Business Profile matches with a search query. Obviously, if someone searches for an Italian restaurant in West Chester, PA, your clothing store in Delaware is not going to be on the results page. A goal of your Google Business Profile should be to use it to become part of the top results in relevant searches.
To improve relevance, adding complete and detailed information to your Google Business Profile can help Google better understand and match your business to more relevant searches. You can do this through adding a complete business description, a list of your most popular services or products, using keywords, and more.
Distance focuses on how far your business location is to the location where the search occurred. For example, if a person searched for restaurants while standing in West Chester, PA, Google is going to supply them with a list of restaurants within a short distance of their location. In cases where Google may not know a user’s specific location, Google will use past data that it has collected for that particular user.
To help improve your ranking, you can add a list of locations where your business provides its services to customers. However, adding numerous or unrelated locations can do more harm than good. So, our recommendation is for you to add 2-4 key locations where you serve your customers and let local customers find you through search.
Prominence refers to how well-known your business is. For instance, a landmark or museum will be prominent in local search results. Google bases prominence off of information they have about your business, such as links, articles, directories, reviews, and more.
One way to improve prominence and your overall ranking is through gaining more positive reviews and ratings. You will also want to follow SEO best practices to improve your position in web results. To learn how to better optimize your Google Business profile, continue reading to the next section.
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