Google Local (formerly known as Google My Business) has made a recent change to their display “pack” from 7 local business listings down to 3 local business listings (see attachment). This means that the competition to get into the first 3 local search results just increased over 200%. I don’t think we have to delve into details about the importance in showing up in this prime real estate for your business. As we know with organic search results, over 90% of users don’t go to the second page of Google, so they most certainly won’t go to the “second page” of google local search listings (ie. click the “More Search Query Keyword“). As with organic search results, local search listings are evaluated on an ongoing basis and require continual attention to ensure your placement. In fact, organic search factors such as domain authority and backlink profile certainly play a factor in the local search algorithm. There are a few other factors Google considers in the local placement that contribute to your ranking such as consistent NAP, Google+ (Google Plus) Reviews and Behavioral Signals on your local listing. Let’s get a quick overview of each of these factors:
There are a lot of other factors that play into the local search algorithm but these are a few important metrics that help determine local rankings. It takes quite a bit of time and resources to keep your position in both organic and local listings, not to mention the algorithms and ranking factors continually change. Considering there are over 70,000 searches per second in Google, your investment in local and organic rankings is well worth your time and money.