The holiday shopping season is right around the corner. We have quite a few clients and potential clients asking the same questions: how can I pump up my local SEO presence? The answer: Create – Claim – Optimize you business’ Google+ Local page.
For those who may not know, Google+ Local pages were formerly Google Places pages. Google+ Local pages are listed high in the Google search engine results, which is the number one reason why having an optimized Google+ Local page can help maximize your local SEO efforts.
Consider how long it may take your company website to rise to a page one listing for highly competitive search terms. When you optimize your Google+ Local page, you get a chance to skip your online brand presence to the head of the pack.
Here are some important things every Google+ Local Page should include:
Your Official Business Name: This should be the official business name, as it would appear on everything from business cards to your website. Whatever your branded company name is, this should be clearly communicated on your page.
Your Business’ Current Address: Double check your address listing to make sure that your address is correct and current. If you’ve had an old address that had a Google Places page associated with it, you may find that listing is directing foot traffic to an old location.
Your Local Phone Number: This should be the company’s main contact phone number, not an 800 number. If you have a sales phone number or an 800 number, it is best to list that under the “alternate phone” field.
A Unique “From the Owner” Business Description: Google+ Local page has a description box that is listed as “from the owner”, located under the business hours. Write out two sentences that include information that will inspire potential customers to interact with you. It is a best practice to work a call-to-action into this description.
Your Business Hours: Listing hours of operation show that you are a legitimate business to both searchers and search engines. Remember, if you list specific business hours, be sure to be available during those times. Oftentimes people who contact you via your Google+ Local page are unfamiliar with your business or have never contacted you in the past. Make an effort to make a good impression and build trust by being available and helpful to callers in.
Your Company Logo and Pictures: List your business logo for company recognition. Google+ Local pages allow you to list up to 10 images. Take advantage of this! Be sure to upload images that feature your location, your products or services and optimize those images with links back to your website or landing pages. For best results, images should be larger than 250×250 but less than 1024×1024 and under 1MB in size.
Properly Selected Categories: Every page can have up to five categories. Help Google get you page in front of the right eyes by selecting the categories that match what your business provides. If you choose to add your own category tags, you do not need to use any location specific keywords.
The potential traffic and visitors generated by your Google+ Local page is immense. As you can imagine, companies that optimize their Google+ Local pages will get ahead of competitors who simply leave their pages blank or to chance. Please contact us if you’d like more information on how HyperX can assist you in optimizing your Google+ Local page.