Compete, or die...sounds a bit cruel, but it is as easy as it gets!
Times like these call for "desperate" innovative measures if one is to stand out of the crowd, pull in customer traffic, and meet those sale figures drafted out in fancy excel spread sheets.
Being that Google presently pegs map listing results right above the normal organic search result listings - meaning less competition for you - Google Places Maps Listing is definitely a coveted place to have your business be.
You need to know how to rank on Google maps to get some of that loving.
While I expanded on how I went about ranking my friend's site quickly, I barely mentioned how I went about ranking the business on Google Places listing.
In this post, I will be addressing that by outlining the very steps I followed in getting the yoga blog ranked quickly in Hong Kong. Hopefully, you will be able to follow these 5 power tips to help you also rank in Google Maps.
1. Claim Your Google Place:
After you have logged into your Google account, you will be asked to select your country and business number for a database search, as it is possible that you've already had a basic Google Places listing of your business automatically set up by Google.
In the event that Google finds your information, you will then be required to manage your page - adding or updating your basic official business details like address, phone number, email address, site description, and company description. It is highly recommended that you fill all fields.
2. Categorize Effectively With Keywords :
Ensure that you use up all available 5 categories that you are offered by Google while trying to categorize your business.
You can't seem to find the perfect category for your business? Not to worry, you are given the freedom to create a custom one. However, make sure that the the primary category field (the first category) is accurately filled to suit the industry your business falls in. Example: Entertainment or Finance?
The secondary category is where you can use to do some sort of search engine optimization. It is advisable to include some kind of location dependent keywords to optimize your business listing and have it featured at the top when someone searches for your business in that region.
Using the yoga site for an example, rather than categorize as just "Yoga" in the secondary category, I rather used "yoga Wanchai". Being that Googlers will normally search in that manner, the site had the keyword optimization edge, hence appears tops when a yoga site is searched for in that region.
Also, in your business description, though Google imposes a character limit making the field short, it's imperative you include keywords surrounding your business that you aim to rank for. Example, instead of writing "We are a great yoga business..." say something like "Awesome Yoga shop based in Wan Chai".
3. Be Consistent With Business Contact Details:
When done with your listing and categorization on Google Places, what you want to do next is ensure that you have your full contact details (most importantly address and business phone number) on your business website. You also want to ensure that your contact information on Google Places is consistent with what you have on the contact page of your business website.
This seems like something to be overlooked, but it might surprise you to know that Google actually crawls the contact page of your website to verify information consistency between your Google Maps listing information and the website contact page.
It is also important to avoid the mistake of having two different addresses or phone numbers listed for one physical location, as this will get Google to discredit and possibly de-list you.
By the way, you don't have a contact page on your website? Come on, tell me it's just an April Fool prank? :)
4. Build Some Quality Back-links:
Contrary to what you might have heard, link building is not dead - at least quality link building.
Now, this one is not overly important, but if you are going after a competitive niche, it could as well be quite tricky ranking in Google Places map listing. With some quality links from authority sources like your local Chamber website directory or other major directory sites pointing to your business website, Google will have some trust in your listing.
While you can get featured on some pretty decent niche directory sites for a small fee, there are free ones out there you can run to. What ever route you choose, know that a little invetment is worth it.
5. Get Awesome User Reviews:
While you don't have total control over what people will write about you (some people might write some pretty bad things), you can always maintain a clean sheet by getting more good reviews than bad ones.
A good way to keep a steady flow of awesome reviews coming the way of your Google listing is give inform your favorite customers to go online and write great things about you as an appreciation for the wonderful services you are providing them - hopefully, you actually are.
A good volume of stellar reviews will help your site rank higher on Google Maps.
I hope you found these tips helpful.
Are there other ways you know on how to go about ranking a business on Google place? I will be more than glad to learn from you via the comments.
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