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Old 04-10-2008   #1
NewKidOnTheBlock
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local search - how to get a link next to the map?

For local searches, how does Google determine who gets a link next to the map which they're starting to use more and more for local search results?

I figure if one knows how to get a ranking at that map, it would be fairly easy to push CTR (because they now show how many reviews there are for a certain site (and many sites not having any reviews at all - and the site with the most reviews will probably stick out the most).

But how does one get to rank next to the map, in the first place?

thanks!
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Old 04-10-2008   #2
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Re: local search - how to get a link next to the map?

It's the business closest to the town or city centre. The further away you are the higher the letter you get.

If you then change the search term to a sub district within the town/city it re-orders the list to the centre of the sub district instead.

Jaz
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Old 04-10-2008   #3
Mel66
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Re: local search - how to get a link next to the map?

You need to make sure you have a Google Local listing for your business. Then optimize your site and submit your site map to Webmaster Central - not required, but helps get you listed.
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Old 04-10-2008   #4
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Re: local search - how to get a link next to the map?

So the business owner should first do what you suggest in order to get listed @Mel66

and where on the list he'll be depends completely on how close he is to the town center (which Google probably knows because of your local listing with them)? @ jazajay

?

just curious if you two are of the same opinion (but each mentioned a different part of the puzzle) or if opinions diverge here?

anyway, thanks jazajay and Mel66

EDIT:

I think you're wrong jazajay. Look at this:

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=sushi+san+diego

http://maps.google.com/maps?hl=en&um...num=1&ct=image

(hopefully you'll see the same thing as I do - searching from Germany?!...I searched for 'sushi san diego')

J is really close to A, whereas D and E are far far away from A..?

Last edited by NewKidOnTheBlock : 04-10-2008 at 06:13 PM.
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Old 04-10-2008   #5
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Re: local search - how to get a link next to the map?

May be you are right Newkid.
When I set my dads up for him 6 months ago he went into position E.
There where positions up to J.

I tried to see a pattern and the only pattern that I could see at the time was that position A was the closest and postion J was the furthest away from the city centre.

All in between where futher away from the city centre.
IE -
A was bang on the city centre.
B further out than A.
C further out than B
D further out than C
etc... etc...

I then typed in his bussiness name in New Oscot. New Oscot being his sub-district. He then moved up to position A and the results where re-ordered . Again I looked for a pattern and they where ordered from there distance from the centre of new Oscot.

I have just looked after you noticed it wasn't the case and you are right he's now in position B and is still currently the 5th from the centre.

It's weird I'm going to look into it as the results are now totally differnet than 6 months ago. Noticeably different. I can not see the same if any pattern as I did then, and it was a noticable pattern at the time.

Maybe part of the update?

My Dad doesn't have a website and was listed within 3 days of submitting he's also going to be very happy.

As of yet I can not see any noticable pattern.

- My dads listing has 1 review in G maps, the bussiness in position A doesn't.
- He has his bussiness name in the title, as I suggested to him, the site above does but listings below him do and don't, agian no noticable pattern.
- My dad's listing doesn't have the category name in nor does the one above it. Listings below do.
- He has submitted to my knowledge to 2 local directories since listing. The competior below and above him has submitted to quiet a few, they are the same listing. Same bussiness that has submitted 2ice.

I'll keep an eye on it as I'm intrested now to get my dads listing up that last position, before I didn't think this was a possibilty now I'm pretty sure it is. But as of yet I am not sure how to proceed, as I say I'm running out of options.

He's about 3-4 miles out from the city centre, from what I can tell. 4 other bussiness futher down the list are much closer, 2, the same listing listed 2ice are bang in the city centre.

One thing I have noticed though that the Search results page in the SERP's is differnet from that when you click through to the listing.
He's in postion D in the SERP's and postion B in the actual map, but I cant see any noticable reason why.

Thats the same with your examples.
Positions F and G are switched in the SERP's and the actual map.

Back to my dads if you click the second third and fourth pages they are based ruffly on geo-location, not ordered by geo-location but clustered by geo-location.

IE: The first page is close to sutton coldfield page 2 are further out but clustered. Page 3 further out than 2, untill you get to page 7 then it gets close to Sutton coldfield again.

Sutton coldfield is a sub district of Birmingham in the UK for those of you who don't know.

I'll keep an eye on it, do some local directory submission when I get a chance and let you know any results I come accorss.

My source - window cleaners in sutton coldfield from the UK.
If you can see something I cant please post.

Jaz
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Old 04-10-2008   #6
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Re: local search - how to get a link next to the map?

Here's some more strange things I'm noticing.
According to the listing my dad has 1 review. You click through it says he has 2 reviews. But only 1 is listed.

Second - He validated it by phone, which doesn't take 2 weeks as it says it does to get it via the mail. But in the bussiness centre it is still -

Awaiting verification
Not currently showing.

but he is listed and has been since Novemeber 07.

Jaz

Last edited by Jazajay : 04-10-2008 at 08:40 PM. Reason: Odd word here and there
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Old 04-11-2008   #7
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Re: local search - how to get a link next to the map?

hm very strange indeed. I would have just assumed they're using their normal search algorithm (or something similar), but giving more weight to local stuff (such as having a listing with them), but that doesn't really make sense if you saw this pattern in the beginning and now it's dissappeared...maybe somebody else on here has an idea? come one somebody has to know!:-)

Quote:
Maybe part of the update?
What update? Have I missed an update? I remember people talking about an update, but nobody was sure if it really was an update or not (lol) a few days or weeks ago?
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Old 04-11-2008   #8
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Re: local search - how to get a link next to the map?

Quote:
Originally Posted by NewKidOnTheBlock View Post
What update? Have I missed an update? I remember people talking about an update, but nobody was sure if it really was an update or not (lol) a few days or weeks ago?
There was a "Dewey" update about a week ago - not as major as Florida a few years ago, but a bigger deal than the more recent algo tweaks. It was discussed on the Daily Searchcast and most of the SEM news sites & blogs.

Re. the validation: I think you have to validate by mail. At least that's what we were told by Google. Anybody can list a location on Maps, but once it's claimed and validated, only the validated owner can edit the listing.

Re. the reviews: Google is pulling those from crawls of Travelocity and other such places. They only crawl them about once a week. So the number of reviews shown on Google can indeed vary from the actual number, depending on when the last crawl took place.

As for positioning on the map / order listed, I think that's part of the algo, but I'm not positive what factors play into that.

Can you tell we've been working on this for some of our clients?
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Old 04-11-2008   #9
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Re: local search - how to get a link next to the map?

I can tell hehe..

I'm in a similar situation: a friend of mine is running a successful site (without having done much actual SEO work) in his local area and I'm sure he can rank #1 his main keywords (and he has another idea for a local site, which I like), but I'm kind of concerned about these new local listings.

Ranking #1 for location + keyword might not be very useful if everybody just sees a map and you can't get your site to be displayed next to that map..so my guess is the main thing to consider is that one should have an actual business behind one's site if going for local terms (I guess made for adsense sites won't work in local niches much longer if the map-listings take over and you have to register your site with Google)
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Old 01-29-2009   #10
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Re: local search - how to get a link next to the map?

Google's "Ten-Box" (top 10 Maps listings) is very valuable real estate and it's no wonder everyone's trying to get into that grid.

I know that Google uses a variety of factors, including not only geo-location but also the completeness of the business listing profile (for example, what keywords are used in describing the business compared to what keywords were used by each searcher).

Less (but still) important is knowing where your business shows up for important searches in Yahoo Local/Maps, MSN/Live Local, Mapquest, etc.

If your business is local, I recommend you determine your top 7 money-maker keyphrases and test them for your top 7 neighborhoods/zipcodes each on all 3 engines (7 x 7 x 3 = 147 test variables). Or more if you have patience to test for more. You could do a search for zip codes in your area and test for all of them, for example.

I know when I search for a local business I use zip code, but not everyone is the same. "New York" is a well-used search phrase around here (in NYC).

I know a service (and there are probably others too) called Yodle Submit that lets you set up one account to get into Google + Yahoo + MSN local/map listings and get exact feedback on clicks, calls and emails you receive through the 3 engines' maps. Free trial at http://yodle.com/sem/submit. That Yodle application gets you Yahoo natural-search "paid inclusion" too.

Now mind you, this doesn't guarantee rank - you have to be good about describing your business with good keywords. Also, you could do this all manually yourself but I personally can't spend that kind of time on all those search engines. Takes away from my forum-reading
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Old 01-30-2009   #11
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Re: local search - how to get a link next to the map?

good local listing tool... www.getlisted.org - am writing article on them - handy tool
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Old 02-05-2009   #12
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Re: local search - how to get a link next to the map?

Our all sites rank well in local search but i didn't noticed to submit my websites in botw.
Does BOTW provide healthy traffic?
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Old 02-05-2009   #13
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Re: local search - how to get a link next to the map?

You get a certain amount of direct traffic but the listing helps solidify local positions
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Old 02-06-2009   #14
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Re: local search - how to get a link next to the map?

All you need is to have a physical address and local phone number on the site and submit directly to Google - or not, they'll list it when they find it themselves even if you don't submit.

FREE!! That's all folks, that's it!
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