Search engine optimization for small and very small businesses.

Google’s Advice – Guidelines For Google Local

Google LocalIf you own a local business, it’s important to show up in the local search engine listings. And Google Local gets the most traffic.

Actually, Google Local is part of Google Maps at www.maps.google.com. And Google has some quality guidelines that will make your listings better and hopefully improve your visibility. The full story from Google is here. But these are the salient points:

  • Represent your business exactly as it appears in real life. The name on Google Maps should match the business name, as should the address, phone number and website.
  • List information that provides as direct a path to the business as you can. Given the choice, you may want to list individual location phone numbers over a central phone line, official website pages rather than a directory page, and as exact of an address as you can.
  • Only include listings for businesses that you represent.
  • Don’t participate in any behavior with the intention or result of listing your business more times than it exists. Service area businesses, for example, should not create a listing for every town they service. Likewise, law firms or doctors should not create multiple listings to cover all of their specialties.
  • Use the description and custom attribute fields to include additional information about your listing. This type of content should never appear in your business’s title or address fields.

For details on how to add your site to Google Local, Yahoo Local, and MSN/Live Local, see our earlier blog post here.

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