Hyperlocal search and the Google Local Pack
Posted on 5th September 2017 at 15:58
A hyperlocal search is one where the customer is looking for a product or service in a more precise area. For example, a business traveller visiting Boots plc from Cornwall might search for ‘hotel Beeston Rylands’ (the area of Nottingham where Boots is located) rather than simply searching for ‘hotel Nottingham’.
Here’s what the traveller would see at the top of the screen if they carried out this search on Google:
Below any paid-for Google Ads (there aren’t any for this search) and a map of Beeston Rylands, there are three ‘featured’ hotel listings.
These appear before the standard Google listings (not shown). The three featured listings are known as the Google Local Pack. Click on any of these and you’ll be taken to the hotel’s Google My Business page, which offers extra information such as contact details and an availability checker.
You’ll also find reviews from Google and other websites, such as Booking.com, to help you make an informed decision about whether to use the hotel.
This is all part of Google’s aim to give users an optimal experience and make it easy for them to find out about, and contact, the business of their choice.
Why is hyperlocal search important?
Research indicates that hyperlocal searches are on the rise, particularly ‘near me’ searches, where consumers look to purchase products or searches in their immediate area.
This means that, unless your website and other online activities are geared towards hyperlocal search results, you could be missing a serious trick.
Of course, with only three Google Local Pack spaces available (it used to be seven; the number was reduced in 2015), it may not be easy to get your business featured. But there are steps you can take to increase your company’s visibility and maximise sales opportunities in your local area.
Tips for optimising your hyperlocal search presence:
1. Set up Google My Business
If you don’t have a Google My Business page, get one sorted. It’s free and easy to use. Find out how to set one up in this download. Once it’s up and running, enter as much information as you can about your business, making sure you’re listed in all relevant categories and, including some high quality images. Then, get in touch with your customers and ask them to leave reviews about your business.
2. Focus your online activities on your local area
Revisit your website and social media accounts to check how focused they are on your local area. As well geographical keywords such as ‘Beeston’ or ‘Nottingham’, make sure your contact details appear on every page of your website. If you use an 08 or 03 phone number, consider swapping this for a geographical code such as 0115 for Nottingham.
These steps will help your business and its location get noticed by Google and other search engines. Including a live Google map of your premises on your website will help, too.
3. Think beyond geographical keywords
Another useful tip is to think about local landmarks or interesting aspects that people might search for online, and align your business with them. For example, you might say ‘Our hotel is conveniently located close to some of Nottingham’s top attractions, such as Wollaton Hall, Nottingham Industrial Museum and the brand new Canalside Heritage Centre’.
4. Create local landing pages
If your business has multiple locations, you could create a bespoke landing page for each one. Be sure to include information that’s specifically relevant and personalised to your customer base in each area. And as per tips 2 and 3, be sure to include geographical keywords, local contact details and other search terms that will help attract more traffic.
5. Consider Pay Per Click advertising
If you’re not having any luck with the Google Local Pack, you could try setting up a locally-focused Google Ads campaign. The advantage of this is that some Google Ads will appear above the Google map and Local Pack information – so your business could be the first to catch a potential customer’s eye.
Find out more
For more information about hyperlocal search, get in touch with it’seeze today. We’ll talk you through how we can optimise your website, SEO and other online activities to really put your business on the map in your local area.
Call us on 0115 777 3001 or complete our online enquiry form to request a call back.
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