Throughout the course of 2010, Google has slowly been shifting more weight to local versus national results. This makes sense. If you google “pizza restaurants,” giving you the corporate website for Dominoes isn’t very helpful. You want to see where the LOCAL Dominoes is, or Oreganos, or Cibo or another local establishment you can actually physically visit and order from.
Google has changed in a big way the last couple weeks by dedicating the top listings in the search results to local businesses that have a Places page:
Almost the entire first page is dominated by local listings. This type of results page appears for many common types of businesses (dentists, lawyers, etc.). Try searching for your type of business and see if Google is displaying local listings in the same manner.
This is a huge opportunity for businesses to appear not only on the first page, but at the top of the first page. You’ll notice that the top listing only have a few reviews. One of the ways Google ranks local listings, is by number of positive reviews. This means the sooner you setup your Google places account and get your customers to review you, the better. The longer you wait, the further you will fall behind your competition.
We have a special package designed just for local businesses who want to get setup on Google Places and optimize their listing to appear higher in the results page for their targeted phrases and keywords. You can learn more by click here: Local SEO Package.