What is Google’s “local pack”?
It simply defines the insert displayed first on the results page (but just under the sponsored links) and includes:
- A Google Maps of the searched area
- A highlight of 3 Google Business files with basic information (rating, address, opening hours)
- A link to view more results
It is mainly based on criteria of relevance, distance, and importance. Suppose the distance appears as one of the main criteria, if not the main criterion. In that case, Google specifies that its algorithm can favor relevance if it considers that a more distant establishment can better offer the Internet using this what it wishes.
- Relevance: It refers to the level of correspondence between a user’s search and a listing. By adding complete and detailed data about your business, you allow Google to understand your business better and match your page to relevant searches from your potential customers.
- Distance: this criterion is calculated according to the distance that separates each potential establishment from the geographical terms used in a search. If a customer does not specify a location, Google calculates the distance based on known location data.
- Prominence: Prominence indicates whether your establishment is known to the general public. Some places are more popular in the real world than on the Internet, and search results consider this metric when determining final rankings. Thus, famous museums, prestigious hotels, or particularly well-known brands are likely to benefit from a high level of prominence in the results of a nearby search.
Google Business Guide: Basic Features
The essential data
It seems to fill in your information correctly by respecting Google’s rules.
The most important thing is to be as transparent as possible about your activity, to be consistent between the different information.
- Establishment Name
This name should match the actual name of your establishment as your customers know it and as it appears on your storefront, website, and materials.
- Establishment Address
Provide the exact address and service area of your establishment. PO Boxes or mailboxes located at remote addresses are not permitted.
- Opening hours
Indicate your standard opening hours (when you are available to receive your customers). If applicable, you can provide your schedules for the current season instead. You also can add exceptional opening hours for certain days.
Number Provide a phone number to reach your institution as directly as possible or a website that represents it. If possible, include the local phone number for your business rather than a call center.
Simply the URL of your site. Please note that your site’s performance also affects your local SEO; we will see this later in this article.
Categories allow your customers to find specific results for the services that interest them.
Pay attention to data consistency.
If all these data must be consistent with each other, it is also essential that data is updated and consistent with this data on your site. If the Contact page of your site contains your address and telephone number, or if your establishment appears on a Store Locator, for example, all this data must be the same.
If Google, in the opposite case, you should also know that Internet users can suggest changes to the information on your Google Business pages. And therefore change your information for good if you do not react quickly enough. Google divides attributes into two categories, factual attributes, and subjective attributes.
The factual attributes will correspond to the concrete services offered by the establishment. A restaurant, the type of establishment with the most attributes available, will therefore indicate whether it is open late, whether it offers service on the terrace, payment by credit card, delivery service, etc.
Subjective attributes will appear based on reviews and comments left by Internet users. I assure you, there are no negative attributes, only the possibility of seeing badges added to your profile such as “warm atmosphere,” “excellent cocktails,” “suitable for children,” etc.
If the attributes help better understand your establishment for Internet users, the algorithm also considers them to make you appear in the right search. Do not hesitate to inform them.
The importance of pictures
The importance of visuals no longer needs to be demonstrated. If the aesthetic aspect is essential, the photos will also allow Internet users to get an idea of your establishment before going there.
If a user prefers an establishment with photos, the last argument is Google. Indeed, on an equal page, it will better reference the one filled in several visuals.
Use Google Posts
Google Posts allow you to communicate with your Internet users, like articles on a blog page. Therefore, you can send your news directly to the results page and Google Maps via text, photo, or video format.
There are several types of Google Posts:
- New: if you have added a new dish to the menu or improved the layout of your customer reception, this is the place to share it.
- Events: Maybe you are opening a new agency and doing an opening event. If so, make a Post Event.
- Offers the type of Post dedicated to discounts and promotions. Knowing that Google penalizes descriptions and other too commercial texts, the Google Posts Offers are the only places where you can push this type of information.
- Products: to appear in the “Products” tab, you can create Posts dedicated to highlighting the products you sell.
Google Posts communicate with your targets, but it’s also a great way to improve your SEO. By sharing relevant news, you will encourage Internet users to click and create more traffic to your site. More traffic leads to better stats, and a better-performing site leads to better SEO.