More consumers are depending on their searches to assist in discovering new and trustworthy businesses than ever before. No matter what a user is looking for, they know a simple Google search will provide them with a variety of results that are relevant to their exact query. Because 95 percent of users don’t look past the first page of Google, being positioned on page one is extremely valuable and coveted. And, when you factor in that most mobile users not looking past the first three results, it is more important than ever to be on page one of Google.
Thanks to The Local Search Ranking Factors Survey, 40 of the top local SEO industry experts have taken the time to rank over 130 factors, as they perceive them, by how influential they are in determining your rank on a Google search results page. Based on this survey, the number one most important ranking factor was determined to be proximity. This means that how close your business is to the user at the point of their search can determine how well you rank for that query, which results in businesses paying their way to the top of page one. We can already see this taking place, as Google has allocated ads within Maps and the Finder results.
Even with this large increase in the influence of proximity, implementing a strong local SEO strategy can greatly impact your rank within the market. Plus, this will also determine how many users go to your site instead of one of your competitors.
In addition to proximity becoming vastly important, there has also been a large increase in the significance of reviews. Users, as well as Google itself, hold a vast amount of merit in reviews, as they can be used to determine if your business is trustworthy and worth their time and money. In fact, 84 percent of users trust online reviews just as much as a recommendation from someone they know. Google has come to find out that customers searching for a local business read and compare both ratings and reviews, which can be the deciding factor in whether they go to your business, or a competitor.
One aspect that saw a decline in importance is Citation Signals. Citations are the places on the internet where your business name, address, and phone number are displayed. This decrease isn’t a reflection of the importance relative to your ranking, but instead how users view these citations. It is still important for your business to have consistent citations across the internet, but these are now viewed as more of an initial factor, rather than a competitive characteristic.
If you’re looking to increase your online visibility, as well as the traffic to your site, ranking higher in local search results is the best way to do this, and doing so starts with an SEO expert that understands your needs. Dealer eProcess offers a team of SEO Specialists who work diligently to fully optimize your website so you can soon be on the first page of Google.