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How to get your website above the regular results on Google - without paying for it

For many businesses, it is very important to be listed in Google Maps. If you offer a service or a product that is relevant to a special area, you might miss many visitors if your website is not listed in Google Maps.

Your website can be listed on page one, above the regular results

This summer, Google changed its algorithm so that the search results automatically include local results if relevant:

"We like to make search as easy as we can, so we've just finished the worldwide rollout of local search results on a map, which will now appear even when you don't type in a location. When you search on Google, we will guess where you are and show results near you."

These local results are often displayed above the first regular result on the result pages:

If your website is listed in the local results, it will be listed above the regular results on that page and people will also see the exact location of your business.

Quick access to your company information

If web surfers enter your company name in Google (for example "cafe habana, nyc") they will get your company information at the top of the search results, above all other results on the page:

As you can see, Google will also show user reviews about your business in the results.

How to get listed on Google Maps

You can submit your website to Google Maps through Google's Local Business Center. Login to your Google account and click "Add New Listing" to enter your company information.

How to optimize your Google Maps listing

There are several things that you can do to get a better listing on Google Maps or to make your listing stand out. You can enter your business information in Google Maps for free but to be listed at the top of the list, you have to optimize your entry.

Enter as much information as possible about your company. Include important keywords in your description. Also add information about opening hours, payment types, etc. Choose the best possible category for your website.

If possible, include images and videos to help your listing stand out. The more information you provide, the better.

If your business location is in the center of the town, it is more likely that it will appear at the top of the list.

Submit your website to other local directories. Google Maps compiles its local results by crawling and parsing data from other online directories and databases. A good position in online yellow pages can cause your listing to be placed higher on the list.

Tip: you can use IBP's directory submitter to submit your website to Google Maps as well as to many other directories and local search pages. Start IBP, click on "Submission > Semi-automatic" and choose "Directories > Local Search" in the list.

The more local directories list your website, the better.

Optimize your web pages for local content. Add your city and state name in your web page title. You can also use local meta tags to tell search engines the location of your website. IBP's website optimization editor can add regional meta tags and meta GEO tags to your web pages.

Get positive reviews. Encourage your website visitors to write positive reviews about your company on Google Maps. More stars can mean a higher position.
If you follow the tips above, your website will get a good listing in Google Maps. Do not spam Google and describe your business without exaggeration. Include your keywords in your company description but don't overdo it.

In addition to being listed in Google Maps, it is important to be listed in the regular results on Google. IBP's Top 10 Optimizer can help you to get your website on Google's first result page for the keywords of your choice.

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October 2009 search engine articles