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The Secret Sauce to Local Rankings in Google

Do you want a steady stream of customers flowing into your business - all on autopilot?

That’s exactly what I’m going to show you what to do here, all with free traffic from Google.The first step is understanding what a killer, the successful local campaign looks like.There are 3 major parts to a winning strategy, so let’s take a look at the front page of Google and I’ll show you:Let’s say I want to go look for a plumber today (or dentist, chiropractor, contractor, sushi restaurant etc. - it all works the same way).In Google today, 3 types of things will come up:

1. A Map Pack

This shows where your business is located on the map.Side note: Don’t worry if you don’t have an actual office and just have a service location, we’ll talk about how that works later!The next thing you’ll see is:

2. Actual Business Websites

Usually, you’ll see a few actual business websites ranking below that.

You’ll also want to get your website ranking here because this is another PRIME position to be in.

3. Directory Listings

A lot of times in Local SEO you’ll also see directories ranking (like yelp, or, etc). That looks like this:

You’ll also want to make sure that you get listed here because people are also clicking on these results.We’ll show you the EASY way to get there in a bit.Now You Try!Go ahead and search for a keyword that describes your business and see what comes up! Do you see these 3 things?Next, we’re going to tackle how to get into all 3 and make sure you’re business is at the top.Google has gotten REALLY advanced over the years.Like, almost scary advanced.You see Google knows where you are physically in the world - for instance, if you type in sushi to Google right now, it will probably bring up LOCAL sushi restaurants.You don’t even have to type in “Sushi Toronto”, just type in “sushi” and it will localize the results.Imagine how many people are looking for your service every day like this, making a split second decision whether or not to call?Earlier in this article, I showed you the 3 main places you want to be ranked:

  1. Map packs
  2. Organic Listings
  3. Business Directories

So I want to break down exactly how to do that in this post!Let's get started!

1. How to get ranked in map packs

The first thing you need to do to get listed in map packs is get a Google My Business account and claim your business.Click here to go get it.(It’s free!)This will help you control how you look on Google and in the map pack.We will go more in-depth on getting you up top a bit later, but have to make sure you have your business claimed first!

2. Organic Listing (AKA Your Website)

After the map pack, you need to get your website ranking higher. There’s a lot that factors that go into this but it mostly breaks down to 2 major things:

1) Making sure that Google understands what your website is about

We call this “onpage SEO” because it refers to what’s actually on your page!You have to tell Google what your website is about!A lot of people just put their business name on their website, but never actually describe what they do in a way that people are searching.They might put “Larry’s Construction”But that doesn’t really describe what you do - You probably do a lot of things, like

  • “New Home Construction”
  • “Kitchen Remodels”
  • “Commercial Construction”

You want to make new pages for each of the services that you offer so that customers AND Google can browse your website.You see, people aren’t just searching for “construction”, they are searching for something very specific - like “modern kitchen remodelling company in Toronto”Google will never know that you do “modern kitchen remodels in Toronto” if you only have the word “construction” on your page.So that’s the first part, optimizing your website by building out different pages that fully describe all your services.Now the second part of ranking your website is:

2) Getting “votes” to get your page to the top

So let’s say you have your website all ready to go and you have all your pages built out.Well, there are probably a lot of people in your area that are you competitors, and they all have websites too.So Google wants to know which one it should rank at the top. There are only 10 spots on the first page of google and only 1 top spot.So how does Google know what to rank at the top?There are said to be over 200+ factors that go into this, but the main one is getting links to your website.You know when you’re on a page, and you see something that says “click here” and it goes to another website?That’s called a link.In the SEO world, this is essentially a “vote” for your website. If other websites are linking to you, that’s a “vote” for your website to be at the top.Google is kind of like a popularity contest. It looks at the whole internet and sees who has most (and the most authoritative) links.So if you were Google and you had 2 sites and you needed to see which one is best that should rank at the top and it looked like this:Larry’s Construction: 10 votes / linksBob’s Construction: 57 votes / linksWhich one would win?You get the idea!So, you have to have these 2 things to get to the top: A good website that describes your services so that Google AND your customers know what it’s about, and links (votes) to your site.

3. Getting Listed in Directories

We also saw that business directories are ranking when you search for your services. So you want to make sure that you’re listed here.Every industry is different in the directories that are most important, so you’ll want to look for what is coming up for YOUR keywords.There are many reasons why you’ll need to make sure you’re listed in these.1) They rank in GoogleThey are often very powerful and rank for your most valuable keywords.2) People sometimes go directly to these and searchHave you ever gone to and directly searched for a restaurant? It happens all the time.3) You can get links from theseThat’s right! When you get your business listed here, you often get a link back to your website. Remember: links are one of the main ranking factors!4) You can get citations from these!A citation is basically the combination of your name, address, and phone number together. It would look like this:Larrys Construction434 Walter St.Toronto ON, M6G 3V1416-382-5555When Google sees this, it’s also good for local SEO.So getting in directories is another vital thing you’ll want to do!

Headshot of Nik Paprocki, head of growth at WebSuitable.
Nik Paprocki
Head Of Growth
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