Top Local SEO Ranking Factors
A new study done by Local SEO Guide, in cooperation with the UCI Center for Statistical Consulting, has found new details about the factors that help certain Google My Business pages rank highly in the search engines. This study revealed some important details about local SEO that businesses should take into account when planning their local SEO strategies.
If you are trying to rank your business for local searches, you should be aware of the ranking factors that are having the greatest impact on your results. Here are the top local SEO ranking factors in 2016.
Links are an essential component of ranking Google My Business pages and are the key factor that helps certain pages to rank higher than others. Data from Majestic, an SEO backlink tool, showed that AC rank, Citation flow, and Trust flow, were all within the top 10 link metrics.
Website SEO Ranking Signals
SEO ranking signals from a business website also had an impact on the ranking of the Google My Business page for a particular business. The use of keywords and content length were of particular influence. The study also found that if the business has high organic search rankings, then its Google My Business page was also likely to be ranked highly, as well.
Google My Business Signals
Google My Business signals, such as reviews, photos, and having the page associated with an Owner Verified profile, also were key ranking factors. Inserting a keyword phrase into a Google My Business page’s business name was also particularly effective. However, Google has already announced that it will deactivate Google My Business listings that insert additional keywords into the business name that aren’t actually part of the official business name.
As far as the factors that were not as important to the ranking of a Google My Business page, citations and geo text were the two things that seemed to be least important. While having consistent citations mattered, the study found that the overall volume of citations was not very important. Geo text on a website did not seem to have an impact on the ranking position of a Google My Business page.
Links Are the Most Important Local SEO Ranking Factor
The overall results of this study found that links were the most important SEO ranking factor for Google My Business pages. Therefore, if you want your Google My Business page to rank highly in the search engines, you should be investing in SEO for your website and you should also have a link building strategy that is focused on building links for your website. Without an SEO strategy, your Google My Business page is likely to rank lower, putting your business at a competitive disadvantage.
Local SEO Is Essential for All Local Businesses
In 2016, every local business should be utilizing local SEO to attract more customers to their physical locations. For most local businesses, attracting local traffic is essential to improving their sales and developing loyalty among local shoppers. If you need help with expanding your current SEO strategy to include local search, our local search engine optimization experts can help.