18 Apr, 2019

Google Local Pack (Google Map Pack): What Is it and How to Optimize

Publicity and active online presence is everything to any business. Therefore, nowadays it is vital for any business to get to grips with Google Local pack and know how to optimize it. Subscribe now and let SpySERP help you achieve and maintain this with its high-performance features.

What is Google Local Pack and how to optimize it: basic description

I guess the question lingering in your mind now is, “What is google local pack?” If you are an online person, then once or twice you have done a local online search for some goods or services in your area, and a listing of three local businesses in that niche appeared at the top of the searches, of course after the ads. This is why.

When you search for any local services online, Google shows a local map in the SERP without requiring you to perform another action. Mostly, because you don’t need to do it - you’re getting all the necessary information in the Google map pack directly.

You’ve seen the screenshot above - and you've probably seen it earlier. But let’s define what the Local 3-Pack really is and how it works. You see three company listings when you do a search in Google for any local company or business operating in a certain area. When this occurs, you’ll see three local companies show up at the top of your search results, strictly under the ads section. Additionally, if these companies have reviews from Google users, you will see those reviews as well.

But about a few years ago, there are the 7-pack instead of 3. This feature was updated in August 2015, and this feature with fewer business listings was created to fit better user experience for mobile users.

Here is how Google Local Pack looked like about 4 years ago:

For now, there are the next features in the company listing in the Google Map Pack:

  1. Company name;
  2. Reviews (if applicable);
  3. Description;
  4. Business information (business address, website, phone number);
  5. Directions and location.

Why is it important to my Business?

The Google Maps Pack (aka Local 3-Pack) appears in almost 30 per cent of all first page for organic search results. Thus, this feature is one of the most frequently displayed Google’s SERP feature, like Featured Snippet or Instant Answers block.

Given the presence of the Google Local Pack on the first SERP (above all organic results), you're probably skipping the organic results since this block gives you all the information you need right now. So other users tend to take similar actions, and this makes Google Local Pack one of the best traffic-driven solutions for all types of local businesses.

This should be a lesson to you as a business person, and the most important question in your head should be “How to optimize google local pack.” However, you need not search anymore, because I have you covered.

How to get ranked Google map pack: The Step by Step Guide

Getting into the top three Google local search results can be easy for less competitive markets and very difficult for others. For example, it’s much more complicated to get into the Google 3-Pack for the “popular” businesses than to get into it for some kinds of “unique” companies. But to know the system of how to get ranked Google Map Pack the basic steps are all the same:

#0. Ideal Location

Yes! The better your location, the smaller number of your offline competitors there, the higher number of citizens in those local areas, the higher your chances to get into Local 3-Pack, even if you have a very high-competitive niche. For example, if someone is looking for a plumber in San Diego, the more centrally located you are in the city, the more likely your company is to show up as one of the top 3 options. That is why it is really vital to understand how to optimize Google Map Pack.

WARNING: Google has quite strict terms of service which applies to My Business as well. Breaking the rules on how you get an address for your business location, and claim it in Google My Business, can have very negative penalties.

#1 Register Your Company in Google My Business

This is the first and one of the most important things. All you need is to claim your business listing and verify it as the business owner or representative.

For these reasons, you can always register your company on this page.

#2. Optimize Your Google My Business Profile

If you want to stand out in Google’s ranking system, you ought to take full advantage of their listing profile system, Google My Business. It means that you’ll need the next:

  1. Have accurate information entered for your name, address, phone number and other significant business information that helps users to find you correctly.
  2. Add as many useful images of your business as you can. Additionally, it would be useful to add the products and/or services of your company (business).
  3. Put the informative company description with many of the keywords associated with your niche.
  4. Optimize your description using keyword phrases, potential clients are searching for online. (This requires the assistance of a content marketing specialist).
  5. Don’t forget about NAP data. Make sure that the business hours and NAP data you are listing there are matching the info listed on your website.
  6. Don’t forget to add reviews. Remember - don’t buy fake reviews, but try to motivate users to leave the fair and good reviews about your products/services. You should also remember that almost 97% of potential customers will check your reviews before choosing your company among others.

#3. Optimize Your Website for Local Search and Mobile Usage

Google lists three factors that it takes into account in local rankings: relevance, distance, and prominence. This means that, firstly, if you’d like to be ranked high in local search results, your website needs to be relevant (well-optimized) to a user’s search query.

Secondly, your business must be located in close vicinity to the user that does the search.

And, finally, your business should be well-known to customers and have high authority both online and offline (so here is why you need to acquire more positive reviews).

At last, but not least, your website should be perfectly optimized for mobile users. As we mentioned above, the Google Local Map 3-Pack was created especially for higher mobile usability - so you shouldn't forget about it as well.

How to optimize Google Map Pack: Rules You Need to Keep

You obviously are thinking it is impossible to get into the Google map pack. However, this is not true. Here are some simple rules you need to abide to:

  1. Use the right features
  2. Improve the mobile compatibility of your website
  3. Provide accurate information about your website
  4. Make your website user friendly
  5. Provide as many images of the business/company as you can
  6. Encourage your customers to leave reviews
  7. And of course, offer top-notch services/products so you can get good reviews.

Google Map Pack: Summary

Naturally, when you feel like grabbing a snack and decide to search online for the businesses offering it near you, most of the time you will stop at the first three results. That’s exactly what your target customers do and that is exactly why you should do all you can to appear in the local 3-pack.

This relates closely to seo, because even with this, you will need to optimize your site to match with the search queries online customers use. As mentioned above, customer reviews, business information and business pictures are very crucial as far as appearing in the local 3-pack is concerned.

Summarily, when your site/business appears in the Google map pack, your products and services are as good as sold, and this is the more reason why you should use SpySERP and make that happen.

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