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Google & SEO \ MAR 4th 2010

Getting Better Rankings in Local Google Listings

Over the past few weeks several people have asked questions to find out how they can improve their listings in general and how to get listed in their local Google listings in particular. Lots of the Wix users are local businesses and small business that rely on their website to get noticed online by potential users. So here’s a simple step by step rundown of a few tactical steps you can take to get yourself listed in the right places, and use the competition for your own benefit.

Step 1:

Start searching for keywords relevant to your business and location. Try all the combinations you can think of. For example, if you were to search for a pizzeria in New York, you may use several different combinations.

Improve Local Google Rankings

Improve Local Google Rankings

Improve Local Google Rankings

What you’re looking for is a list of competing and closely related businesses. Imagine you were one of your clients, what possible combinations might you be using to find the service or product you’re looking for?

Step 2:

Start making lists of the businesses that are consistently getting top rankings. The more keywords (word combinations) you try, the more listings you will become familiar with. Get to know your virtual surroundings. For the best results we suggest you get a few dozen listings from your research. You can start a spreadsheet to follow the different data you’re about to derive from each of these listings.

Improve Local Google Rankings

Step 3:

Explore each of these local business’s online profiles. Don’t click on the name of the listing, visit the reviews by clicking on the reviews link next to the listing. Each page listed here is a page with information about the restaurant, reviews and information that Google found about the place.

Improve Local Google Rankings

Step 4:

Scroll down the page to the “More about this place” section. This is where you’ll find a wealth of links to websites that contain information and mention the restaurant. This is your goldmine, as you can probably find lots of great places to get listed yourself.

Improve Local Google Rankings

Each of the sites listed here is a website that Google is crawling for information on that particular business. You can visit many of these sites and submit or add your own Flash website. Make sure to be consistent in your listings, that the phone numbers and address are accurate and updated. Google places as much emphasis on quality as it does on quantity, so if you’ve listed yourself in a million places, but those websites are irrelevant or the information on them is outdated you’d be doing yourself a disservice.

Even if you don’t care about being listed in local directories but you care about promoting your website, this is a good tactic, as it will bump your website up in rankings. Google will see many relevant websites with links pointing at yours, and it will consider your website more relevant and important as a result. This is quality link-building.

Step 5:

If you’re feeling particularly industrious you can do the same thing for the “reviews” and “user content” sections. Here you’ll find many more links. Do this process thoroughly and you will reap what you sow. Don’t think small. Try to get between 50-250 listings, even if it takes you a few days, and of course depending on the level of competition in your field and your area.

We get asked constantly for ways to get Google to crawl websites more often. The simplest solution is for you to get your website noticed. That means, generating as much traffic as possible and increasing the number of good and established websites pointing at yours, directing search engines right to you.

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