SEO is not a one-time solution for your website. Getting top rankings and staying on top of search results is a constant challenge even for SEO experts because of changes in Internet behavior and the way the Internet’s top search engine views and ranks content. Getting top organic listings used to be the main goal of SEO, then came indented listings, and of late, we have seen the supremacy of Google Places. SEO strategists now maintain that it’s no longer enough for your website to appear in the organic listings. If you want to get massive amounts of targeted traffic, you’ll have to add or claim your listing in Google Places as well.
What is Google Places?
Google Places is said to be the revamped version of Google Local, a feature which enables Google registered accounts to get their businesses into local search results when an Internet user looks for anything with a specific location such as “cosmetic surgery in Manila.”
The geo-targeted results show alongside a map with a red circle indicating where your business is at. This allows your target audience to find your online address and your business address.
How to Get a Google Places Listing
Your first step is to get a Google account if you still don’t have one and ‘add’ a business to your account. Setting up your account takes only a few minutes but you need to provide as much information about your business as you can. Gather all the information you need beforehand to speed the listing process. Verification can be made by phone, SMS or standard mail so providing accurate contact information including your business location is essential. P.O. boxes won’t work with Google Places.
Like any other SEO technique, implementing your Google Places SEO strategy involves a number of factors.
Detailed information: Because Google loves data, its indexing system relies heavily on data you supply when you apply for a listing in Google Places. SEO experts maintain that filling out all possible fields can boost your search rankings.
Data consistency: Google search bots which crawl the Internet may find information about your business from other websites (where you may have registered your business or have it listed in a directory) and compare these with the data you supplied in Google Places. Ensure that information you supplied in Google Places is consistent with the information found in other websites to boost your search rankings. Maintain data consistency elsewhere on the Web such as in domain name registrations, directory listings, and sign up forms.
Business reviews: Google also views any information relating to your business as these may appear in reviews or comments around the Internet. Client or customer reviews found in other websites can be detected by its web crawlers and may appear as snippets in your Google Places listing. Viewers can expand this view to read the complete feedback found in Google Places. Data consistency in business reviews contributes as well to your search rankings.
SEO Tip: Geo targeted domain names containing your business name boost your SEO rankings tremendously. Supplying an email address using this type of domain name is highly favored by Google.