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So what is Google Local Business Center?

Google Local Business Center allows you to list your business to appear in Google and Google Maps. You can include information about your business, photos related to your business, opening times, methods of payment accepted and anything other information you might feel is relevant.

How do I create a great Local Business Center listing?

Your first step should be to read Googles guidelines for listings, violate these at your own peril! Read them here

Some of the guidelines include:

  • Do not create listings at locations where the business does not physically exist.
  • PO Boxes do not count as physical locations.
  • Do not create more than one listing for each business location, either in a single account or multiple accounts.
  • Provide a phone number that connects to your individual business location as directly as possible. For example, you should provide an individual location phone number in place of a call center.
  • Provide one URL that best identifies your individual business location.
  • Do not provide phone numbers or URLs that redirect or ‘refer’ users to other landing pages or phone numbers other than those of the actual business.

You should remember the main point here is that you must include real physical information about your business. Don’t try and spam Google maps with false addresses etc and try to get extra listings, if you are caught you will be excluded. Google have a link for reporting such behaviour: Report Spam

How Do I Optimise Google Local Listings?

Google Map listings are based on relevance, like all other Google listings. The algorithm used to work out relevance is of course not made public but factors such as distance of the business from the location effect rank. However relevance will always be the most important factor so just because your business is closer does not mean you will rank higher.

Through the work we have done for clients in the past we have noticed certain factors which can help. Here are a few:

  1. Having your address within the city you are optimising for is a strong infuencing factor. If you happen to be a few miles out of the city it would prove difficult to rank for terms related to that city.
  2. Keywords should be used in the listing description.
  3. On-page optimisation of your website can help but it is not actually necessary. Some businesses rank well without even having a website, however in more competitive markets optimising your site can help.
  4. Reviews on Review Engine Sites such as Yelp is a very important factor.

Are there any more points you could suggest for this list?

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