Once upon a time, the Internet was designed to connect customers and businesses anywhere, local, state or worldwide. But everything has changed. The Internet is still a great equalizer that allows businesses, large and small, to compete on a more equal footing, but the fact remains that consumers are starting to use the Internet to find local stores to shop. To take full advantage of this trend, you need to be visible to locals when they search for “near me”.
Localization with Google Ranking
According to Google, there are three key metrics that are more important than all other metrics when it comes to local searches for “near me.” These metrics are:
What do each of these metrics mean and how can you influence how customers can find you when they want?
Relevance is easiest to determine. If customers buy shoes and you sell pizza, there’s no reason your business should appear in search results. Not related. For local searches, you want to make sure that your website content matches exactly what users are looking for.
Pro tip: To optimize your Google Business Profile listings, we recommend adding complete and detailed business information to help Google better understand your business and match your listings to relevant search terms.
Distance is another important factor. “Nearby” is somewhat subjective, but if your business is 15 miles from searchers, it won’t show up in search results unless there are few relevant results nearby. The farther away you are from your location (and distance metrics from your device), the fewer results you see.
The last attribute that really matters is reputation. It’s a little trickier to calculate as it’s about things like authority, brand image, customer ratings, etc. It actually has to do with the amount of information you find online about your business. The more information you have, the better your business seems to be. This includes the number of customer reviews, the number of backlinks to the site, and more.
Increase business visibility
Want to know how to rank and get more customers in “near me” searches? First, increase visibility by listing names, addresses, and phone numbers (NAP for short) in your local business directory.
Local Citation Competition
Local links to NAP data are critical to ranking. Fight for them! You can use the following tactics and ideas:
Find out where competitors have posted NAP quotes and post them there too.
Use a meeting service (eg Meetup.com) to find upcoming events related to your business and sponsor them in exchange for a link.
Offer jobs or scholarships to local students to get links to higher education websites.
Gather public data to create a useful website for your community and get press coverage.
Highlight your Business on Your Google Business Profile
Do you really want to know how to optimize your search for “around me”? Then it’s time to master your Google Business Profile. This feature makes your company appear more prominent and official by displaying it in a special section next to the search results.
Take advantage of your Google Business Profile by doing the following:
- Find your Google Business Profile by searching for your business on Google.
- Follow the instructions to verify your Google identity and manage your listings.
- Check and update information in advertisements
- Expand ads with useful content
- Use Google Messages
A Google Business Profile allows you to post information directly to local search results and Google Maps using Google Posts.
- Products and services
- latest News
- current offer
- Special Events
- Updates about recent Activities
The Google Click-to-Call feature allows you to add a real phone number to your Google Adwords ads and show them in Google search results from time to time based on normal Adwords bids.
By letting potential customers click on your link to call you immediately, you can increase your click-through rate and get a better return on your advertising investment.
How to rank in other search engines
Go back to SEO basics and be number 1 on search engines other than Google. Remember these tips:
Explore the simplest and most intuitive keywords and local searches relevant to your business.
Keywords often follow the format “service” to “place” (eg “Plumber in Boston”).
Use keywords in the body of your website, meta descriptions, subtitles, URLs, etc.
Register your business on Bing Places and Apple Maps
Eat, sleep, optimize, repeat.
You may want to add the keyword “near me” to your site to trick the system and increase your visibility. Unfortunately, this doesn’t work. In fact, this may cause Google to blacklist your site. Instead, focus on the three metrics above, as well as optimizing your mobile website and responding to reviews.
In 2017, this was a first-year mobile search to surpass desktop and laptop searches. This trend is getting stronger. Most of the searchers use smartphones to find answers to their questions. Focus on helping customers find and connect with you quickly by adding features like Click-to-Call, Click-to-Chat, and more.
Online reviews are more important than ever, especially for local businesses. We regularly update our reviews to get your attention, especially on mobile devices. But in addition to getting good reviews, you should also be concerned about ranking and reputation, and the only way to manage them is to actively manage reviews.
Your website is one of the most important tools for your business to rank in local “near me” searches, but it’s not the only one. You should also use a local business listing site, respond to reviews regularly, and make sure your listings are complete and up to date.