At Vivial, we have an entire team that specializes in optimizing our clients for local and mobile directories including Google Places.   There are literally hundreds of factors that go into getting your local business to the front page, or to #1 for that matter.   But it doesn’t have to be overly complicated, especially since most local businesses have yet to fully invest in their Google Place page – which we think is a big mistake.

Now is the time to take the lead, when the competition is unaware of how to optimize or the gravity of its importance.  We think Google Places will be the most important local directory on the Internet, and probably already is because of its integration into iPhones, iPads and Android devices as well as being prioritized in Google’s algorithm for web based search.

Here are the 3 leading Google Place Page tips to get your Google Place Page ranking and fast.

 

1)  Complete your Google Place Page.  Claim your Google Place page and make sure your phone number, name and address match your website and other web presences.  Then fill out every field, even parking directions (I know, even in NYC).  Now do everything you can to encourage positive reviews from your customers.  Get above 5 right off the bat.   Then go for 100 which is the next big milestone in the algorithm.

2)  Make Your Listings on Directories Consistent on Yelp, CitySearch, Mapquest, Local.com, Superpages, Yahoo, all of them. Use the exact same business name, address, phone number as you use on your Google Place page and make sure they all have descriptions, keywords, photos and more. There are over 100 directories we recommend using that can boost your ranking.   Need help on what to prioritize?  Call us.

3)  Update Your Website.  Your website should be search engine optimized and have a matching phone number and address on every page (we recommend the footer).  Add a Google +1 widget that links to your Google+ account.

That should get you going and start ranking in the top 10 and probably top 5.   Unfortunately, it can also be a lot of work, especially in the area of local and mobile directory submissions.  Find a partner that will do it for you and make your life easier.   But make sure to claim your listings, not just update them through a data provider like Localeze, Dunn & Bradstreet, etc.   Ask any partner whether these are fully claimed listings.