How to Set-Up Your Google+ Local Page for Optimal SEO PerformancePosted by oicadmin on 02/14/13
Tags: google plus , google local search , google+ , local seo , seo
Local businesses can gain some serious marketing momentum by properly setting-up a Google Plus Local page.
The process is rather simple with the right guidance. By establishing a local business page on Google Plus, you can help increase your company's ranking in the Google local search results (example shown in the image to your right.)
In this article, I will guide you through the simple steps of setting-up (and slightly optimizing) a Google Plus Local page for your business. Let's get started.
1. Claim Your Google Plus Page
Before you immediately create a new page for your business, check to see if there's an existing, un-claimed page. To do this, perform a search on Google Plus for the name and geographic location of your business.
Once you've submitted your search, use the drop-down option to select "People and Pages." From the search results, you should be able to spot your business's page, if it exists. If you do see your business page, click into the page and look toward the bottom for the option to "Manage this page."
If you do not see a page for your business, you'll need to create a new one. This option is near the bottom left of the Google Plus menu bar, under "More."
From the "Pages" menu, you can select to create a new page. When creating a new page, it's important that you choose "Local Business" as the type of page.
2. Edit Your Business's Information
Whether you have an existing Google Plus Local page or are creating a new one, you'll definitely want to tune-up the business's information.
The "Business Name" field should be a given; however if your business has multiple locations under one name, you'll want to distinguish its specific location in this field. For our example with "Nerds on Call," a residential computer repair company in central Illinois, there are five locations. As a result, we add a 'clean pipe' after the business name, followed by the location for that specific page.
In this case, we use "Nerds on Call | Peru, IL" as the business name to differentiate this page from the others. The business address is one of the most important elements on the page. And if you're claiming an already existing Google Plus Local page for your business, then chances are the address info might be slightly off.
Make sure that address is spot-on verbatim with that of your business's website. This alignment is critical to ensure your business is legitimate through the eyes of Google (and can influence your Google Local search ranking as a result.)
In our scenario of claiming an already existing page, Google had the street name slightly incorrect. We changed it from "Illinois 251" to the correct street of "State Route 251."
The rest of the fields are pretty straight-forward. Just be sure that everything is accurate and aligned with you company's website.
In the description field, you'll want to write concise summary of what your business offers and/or specializes in. You may also want to add a call-to-action link to help facilitate leads from the page's description.
3. Submit PIN Verification Request
Next you'll want to submit a postcard verification request to your business. This option is near the bottom right of the Google Plus Local page.
When you submit verification request, Google will send a postcard to your business's address with a PIN.
Once received (typically within a week,) you'll want to return back to your company's Google Plus Local page and submit the PIN to complete the verification process.
4. Link to Your Google Plus Page from Your Website
This last step is the icing on the cake. Near the bottom right of the Google Plus Local page, you'll see the option to "Link Your Website - Help people discover your page."
By including this link on your business's website (to its Google Plus page,) it further validates this page and helps its overall search engine authority for SEO.
The "rel=publisher" snippet in the link's URL tells Google that your company's website is the publisher for any content stemming from the site. If you publish blog posts from your website, you'll want to attribute the author of each blog post with a link to his or her personal Google Plus profile page.
In the author's link, include the "rel=author" snippet in the URL (see my Google Plus author link at the bottom for an example.) This establishes the ever-powerful Google Authorship for the blog post and will further accelerate its search engine value.
Using the "publisher" and "author" snippets in these links can help get your content crawled and indexed much faster. Additionally, you can generate the "rich snippet" author image in Google's search results (shown below.) This will make your blog post stand-out from the clutter and help increase your content's click-through rate in the search listings.
5. BONUS! Build Some Citations to Increase Your Ranking!
Building citations is an ongoing effort of creating business profiles and directory listings on various other websites. Check out this blog post for quality sources to build citations.
Having citations on other credible website is a sign of legitimacy to Google. When Google crawls these other listings, it will compare the name, address, and phone number of you business with that of its website and Google Plus Local page. When all things jive, your ranking can increase. In essence, this is the practice of “link building” for Google Local SEO, or in a more progressive sense, Goolge Plus Local optimization.
About the Author
Tyler Tafelsky has over five years of experience in the organic SEO profession. Starting his career as a copywriting for an international SEO firm and now the Internet marketing manager here at OIC, Tyler offers a wealth of expertise in the search marketing industry. You can email him directly at Tyler(at)oicgroup.net or Follow him on Google Plus.