Can You Rank # 1 On Google Maps?

by AndrewCavanagh 27 replies
I've used Google Maps myself (you can get businesses listed completely free and you often come up the top of Google's geographically related search terms).

And you can add photos, videos, get people to review your local business and more.

But I'm wondering if anyone else has had experience with this method.

I know the keywords you put in the categories section is vital for the search engine results you get.

And you can add more keyword phrases in the "additional details" section.

And you don't need to use city or suburb names in your keyword phrases...google adds that based on the physical location of your business.



Is there anyone else here who's had some experience or success with Google Maps?

If so perhaps you could share with us.

Kindest regards,
Andrew Cavanagh
#main internet marketing discussion forum #google #maps #rank
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  • Profile picture of the author Susan Hope
    Hi Andrew

    Yes I have..

    If you type in "carpets ammanford" you will see top listing is a site I am currently in the process of building for a client.

    And

    If you type in "ammanford marketing" you will see my marketing site listed at location "B" (please note this site is now undergoing some major reworks on my part).

    I love google local.

    Sue
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    • Profile picture of the author AndrewCavanagh
      Thank you Sue.

      Do you have any tips, suggestions or lessons learned from your experience?

      Kindest regards,
      Andrew Cavanagh

      P.S. You know you can add photos to that Google Maps listing. That will make your listing stand out in a huge way over other listings without photos.

      Also you can put large writing over your photo that shares the business USP for example
      "BEST Quality Carpets
      In Ammanford
      476 599799"

      or

      "Best Deal On Carpets
      In Ammanford"
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      • Profile picture of the author AndrewCavanagh
        Wow. I knew the general knowledge on Google Maps was low but this is surprising me.

        This would be a HUGE opportunity for someone who wants to master this field.

        Keep in mind that when someone makes a local search on Google involving a city name, suburb name or postcode often the first search result is a huge image of a map and a listing of businesses.

        And you can add your listing to Google Maps completely free.

        This is definitely a largely untapped gold mine.

        Kindest regards,
        Andrew Cavanagh
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        • Profile picture of the author Michael Mayo
          Hi Andrew,

          I seen this thread when you first posted it but didn't have time to reply, Now I do.

          Google Maps Help Group states the following:

          3. How do I rank my business higher in the search results?

          Google's Answer is :
          You can't. Because the Local Business Center is a free service,
          you can't pay money to obtain a higher ranking.

          You can find this info and more here:
          http://groups.google.de/group/Google-Maps/web/information-for-business-owners---faq

          The only way to get your map to rank higher is to have
          a Google map on your main site and SEO the site to rank
          higher in the SE's. This should increase the relevance
          of your G-Map page and increase it's position too.

          Example:
          A map from a PR-5 site should rank higher than
          a map from a PR-3 site with the same keywords.

          Hope that Helps,
          Have a Great Day!
          Michael
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          • Profile picture of the author AndrewCavanagh
            Originally Posted by Michael Mayo View Post


            The only way to get your map to rank higher is to have
            a Google map on your main site and SEO the site to rank
            higher in the SE's. This should increase the relevance
            of your G-Map page and increase it's position too.

            Example:
            A map from a PR-5 site should rank higher than
            a map from a PR-3 site with the same keywords.

            Hope that Helps,
            Have a Great Day!
            Michael

            Thanks for your post Michael.

            I'm not 100% sure what you mean though.

            Are you suggesting that having a map on a higher ranked site will improve your
            rankings when someone searches on Google maps or just that the actual site itself will
            get a higher Google ranking?

            Kindest regards,
            Andrew Cavanagh

            P.S. Some actions certainly do get you higher google maps results for certain search terms.

            I've played around enough to see that.

            But they're mainly based around the categories you choose in your listing.

            I'm wondering if anyone else has noticed anything?
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            • Profile picture of the author Michael Mayo
              Hi Andrew,
              I wasn't sure if I had made my point or not, Thanks for the reply.

              Basically if the map is located on your site it will do good in the search
              engines for the keywords you have chosen.

              But, If you have it listed on the site and also other authority sites it will
              make a big difference. I've played with it enough to know.
              (I'm Also looking for the right Formula).

              In other words if your site has a PR of 2 and you then have 4 external
              links from PR 5 sites, Your ranking would strengthen .

              How much can't be determined at this time but I'm sure every little bit counts!

              Have a Great Day!
              Michael
              Originally Posted by Michael Mayo View Post

              Hi Andrew,

              I seen this thread when you first posted it but didn't have time to reply, Now I do.

              Google Maps Help Group states the following:

              3. How do I rank my business higher in the search results?

              Google's Answer is :
              You can't. Because the Local Business Center is a free service,
              you can't pay money to obtain a higher ranking.

              You can find this info and more here:
              http://groups.google.de/group/Google-Maps/web/information-for-business-owners---faq

              The only way to get your map to rank higher is to have
              a Google map on your main site and SEO the site to rank
              higher in the SE's. This should increase the relevance
              of your G-Map page and increase it's position too.

              Example:
              A map from a PR-5 site should rank higher than
              a map from a PR-3 site with the same keywords.

              Hope that Helps,
              Have a Great Day!
              Michael
              Originally Posted by AndrewCavanagh View Post

              Thanks for your post Michael.

              I'm not 100% sure what you mean though.

              Are you suggesting that having a map on a higher ranked site will improve your
              rankings when someone searches on Google maps or just that the actual site itself will
              get a higher Google ranking?

              Kindest regards,
              Andrew Cavanagh

              P.S. Some actions certainly do get you higher google maps results for certain search terms.

              I've played around enough to see that.

              But they're mainly based around the categories you choose in your listing.

              I'm wondering if anyone else has noticed anything?
              {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[149993].message }}
              • Profile picture of the author AndrewCavanagh
                Originally Posted by Michael Mayo View Post

                Hi Andrew,
                I wasn't sure if I had made my point or not, Thanks for the reply.

                Basically if the map is located on your site it will do good in the search
                engines for the keywords you have chosen.

                But, If you have it listed on the site and also other authority sites it will
                make a big difference. I've played with it enough to know.
                (I'm Also looking for the right Formula).

                In other words if your site has a PR of 2 and you then have 4 external
                links from PR 5 sites, Your ranking would strengthen .

                How much can't be determined at this time but I'm sure every little bit counts!
                I'm still not 100% sure what you mean (excuse me for being dumb).

                So are you saying that if you have your map on a website with good backlinks then if I:

                # Seach on Google Maps for something related to a keyword you've optimized for your Google Maps listing will be higher?

                Kindest regards,
                Andrew Cavanagh
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                • Profile picture of the author Michael Mayo
                  Originally Posted by AndrewCavanagh View Post

                  I'm still not 100% sure what you mean (excuse me for being dumb).

                  So are you saying that if you have your map on a website with good back links then if I:

                  # Seach on Google Maps for something related to a keyword you've optimized for your Google Maps listing will be higher?

                  Kindest regards,
                  Andrew Cavanagh
                  Hi Andrew,

                  Your not dumb at all for asking the question. The only dumb question has
                  never been asked so know one knows what it actually is. That in it's self
                  seems to make us all a little Ignorant of the facts at times but that's life!

                  All I'm saying is that the SEO of your MAIN Site can help your Google Map
                  Site.

                  Why? Because Your site leads to Your Google Map site and if others also
                  link to your Google Map site then you gain exposure and PR link juice.

                  Also, I believe that your ranking in the Google Maps Directory will also
                  Increase because of Relevancy.

                  Now if you have a bunch of irrelevant sites linking to Your site then that
                  would be counter productive.

                  Have a Great Night!
                  Michael
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  • Profile picture of the author Michael Francis
    Andrew have been using google maps for a while with all my businesses and this ins also include in my new book coming out in two weeks. Yes maps are effective for local geo related search term positioning.
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  • Profile picture of the author Tsnyder
    Hi Andrew...

    Yes... I've experienced the #1 ranking on Google Maps
    for a client of mine.

    If you search the phrase *Iowa pasture horse boarding*
    you'll find that Lewis Bottoms Farms comes up #1 out of
    more than 500 listings.

    It appeared in the #1 position 15 minutes after I created
    the listing.

    Tsnyder
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    If you knew what I know you'd be doing what I do...
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    • Profile picture of the author AndrewCavanagh
      Originally Posted by Tsnyder View Post

      Hi Andrew...

      Yes... I've experienced the #1 ranking on Google Maps
      for a client of mine.

      If you search the phrase *Iowa pasture horse boarding*
      you'll find that Lewis Bottoms Farms comes up #1 out of
      more than 500 listings.

      It appeared in the #1 position 15 minutes after I created
      the listing.

      Tsnyder
      My guess is that in your business listing on Google maps in categories one of the ones you've entered is...
      pasture horse boarding

      It seems if you're the only business who has listed a keyword phrase as a "category"
      in your business lising you go straight to number 1 on Google Maps results when people search for that phrase and your geographical area.

      Not only that but you go to number 1 for regular Google results with that combination too...right next to that huge google map at the top of the regular Google results.

      Now that's a secret worth knowing!

      Kindest regards,
      Andrew Cavanagh
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      • Profile picture of the author Tsnyder
        Originally Posted by AndrewCavanagh View Post

        My guess is that in your business listing on Google maps in categories one of the ones you've entered is...
        pasture horse boarding

        It seems if you're the only business who has listed a keyword phrase as a "category"
        in your business lising you go straight to number 1 on Google Maps results when people search for that phrase and your geographical area.

        Not only that but you go to number 1 for regular Google results with that combination too...right next to that huge google map at the top of the regular Google results.

        Now that's a secret worth knowing!

        Kindest regards,
        Andrew Cavanagh
        Actually, the categories chosen were "Horse Boarding & Rental" and "Horse Rental
        and Riding"

        I didn't enter anything else.

        Tsnyder
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        If you knew what I know you'd be doing what I do...
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  • Profile picture of the author Michael D
    Andrew,

    I have been interested in this for a while and found a pretty thorough resource here:

    The Local Search Ranking Factors: Ranking High in Google Maps and Yahoo Local

    Here are a couple more interesting articles:

    Local Search, SEO, and Rants | Stephen Espinosa Blog Archive Reviews and how they affect local ranking - Reviews 101

    Google Local Search SEO (Blended Search): Optimizing Universal Search Results for Local Businesses :: Blog :: Fuel Interactive


    One thing to note. Usually, businesses that included the search term in the actual listing came out on top. But, Google caught onto this and doesn't allow this anymore. You can and will be reported if found out. Also, you can only submit to 1 category now and not a bunch of them.

    I think since this is such a new thing for Google they are still tweaking the algo a little bit here and there so it seems kind of tough to figure out what they want and don't want. I think the best thing to do is just make sure the business is listed in the best category possible and do the normal onsite and offsite SEO and hope for the best.
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    • Profile picture of the author AndrewCavanagh
      Originally Posted by Michael D View Post

      Also, you can only submit to 1 category now and not a bunch of them.
      They give you 6 categories you can enter in your listing.

      You can only enter your business once per business location...or at least that's the way it worked when I checked yesterday.

      It's possible the rules are different for different areas and they do keep changing.

      Thank you so much for the links. I have read them but they're still useful resources.

      Kindest regards,
      Andrew Cavanagh
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  • Profile picture of the author I'mNothing
    sure you can... just put in the time and effort...
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    I believe in YOU
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  • Profile picture of the author Kelvin Brown
    Andrew,

    I thought I was the only one sharing this to a small group. 2 or 3 years ago, I submitted to google, and waited 2 weeks to get my postcard in the mail.

    This is a great technique even when people don't take full advantage. Why, because if you have a local biz, it is just a fact that most of your competitors are not using google local.

    So, for that reason alone, it stands out and up.

    Also, note depending on how savvy users are they may personalize searches for their region. Or google may recognize your IP, and of course when doing local searches push local listings higher.

    The other thing is that if you are a local business, make sure your address is readable on the html page. At least the city.

    For example: plumbing in washington DC,

    Now you do a search for plumbing DC, often even if you have not directly added your listing to google local, the main search will consider the location in search parameters, and send you to local anyway.

    Kelvin
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    Kelvin Brown

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    • Profile picture of the author AndrewCavanagh
      Originally Posted by Kelvin Brown View Post

      The other thing is that if you are a local business, make sure your address is readable on the html page. At least the city.

      For example: plumbing in washington DC,

      Now you do a search for plumbing DC, often even if you have not directly added your listing to google local, the main search will consider the location in search parameters, and send you to local anyway.
      Great tips Kelvin.

      I assume when you say "make sure your address is readable on the html page" you mean put your address or city location on your regular website so Google will pick that up for local searches?

      Kindest regards,
      Andrew Cavanagh
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      • Profile picture of the author Kelvin Brown
        Originally Posted by AndrewCavanagh View Post

        Great tips Kelvin.

        I assume when you say "make sure your address is readable on the html page" you mean put your address or city location on your regular website so Google will pick that up for local searches?

        Kindest regards,
        Andrew Cavanagh
        Absolutely. For local business, you go to the head of the line, just by adding your location to your meta tags.

        I can't tell you how many business that are going for local business, simply have meta tags that say 'homepage' or 'welcome to my business name'.

        And yes, the address should be able to be easily spidered by search engines.

        Another problem I often see is flash or images that show the location, but we know that is not readable by search engines. And of course they don't know to use alt tags for the images.

        Andrew, I am going to keep some of my tips, to myself

        Kelvin
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        Kelvin Brown

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    • Profile picture of the author AndrewCavanagh
      Originally Posted by Kelvin Brown View Post

      I thought I was the only one sharing this to a small group. 2 or 3 years ago, I submitted to google, and waited 2 weeks to get my postcard in the mail.
      I think Google uses mainly telephone verification of your address now so you can get listed in minutes and from different countries.


      On the topic of using maps or pictures to make it easier for people to find your business.

      If you name the image file intelligently that should increase your rankings on Google.

      eg. PlumberAustinTexas.jpg
      (the way you name files like images on your site can be a huge secret to improving your rankings with Google and you'll also come up in Google image searches which is especially valuable in some online businesses where people use image searches to find what they're looking for like clothing).

      And of course use the alt tags for the image too.

      Kindest regards,
      Andrew Cavanagh
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  • Profile picture of the author Kelvin Brown
    Let me share with you a live example: Me

    My business name is very uncreative. And used by thousands of companies, some with deep pockets. And I don't actually promote the business name.


    Go to google search for ' kb enterprises dc '
    My search shows: Results 1 - 10 of about 5,850,000 for kb enterprises

    Now just add 2 letters to the search, kb enterprises dc
    My search shows: Results 1 - 10 of about 2,640,000


    For me, when I execute the last search of 2.5 million pages, I come up #1. And the google map images comes up making the listing standout even more.

    And that is from the general web search, Click on the map button next to it, and I am number #1: Even showing my personal picture ( sorry about that) , which is added in Google local.

    These results may not be the same for you, as noted Google may distribute results differently based on your location or your settings.

    However, if you do the search and see something different, please add to this post, so that Andrew can analyze the results.

    Kelvin
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    Kelvin Brown

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  • Profile picture of the author Daniel Molano
    This is a very interesting thread, I already see huge potential.

    Have you tried backlinks with anchor text as in classic SEO? (Or is it not possible)?
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    • Profile picture of the author AndrewCavanagh
      Originally Posted by Daniel Molano View Post

      Have you tried backlinks with anchor text as in classic SEO? (Or is it not possible)?
      Thanks for the suggestion.

      I don't think backlinks help significantly but I could be wrong.

      It certainly could be tried as each listing you enter does seem to have it's own URL something like this...
      yoga teacher cairns - Google Maps

      I'm sure you can use the actual URL of the map listing rather than the search result above.

      Google must be ranking these listings somehow and that ranking does seem to be influenced by what you put inside the google maps listing you submit.

      But there are certainly other factors too.

      Just not entirely sure what they are or whether they can be influenced.

      Kindest regards,
      Andrew Cavanagh
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      • Profile picture of the author Daniel Molano
        Originally Posted by AndrewCavanagh View Post

        Thanks for the suggestion.

        I don't think backlinks help significantly but I could be wrong.

        It certainly could be tried as each listing you enter does seem to have it's own URL something like this...
        yoga teacher cairns - Google Maps

        I'm sure you can use the actual URL of the map listing rather than the search result above.

        Google must be ranking these listings somehow and that ranking does seem to be influenced by what you put inside the google maps listing you submit.

        But there are certainly other factors too.

        Just not entirely sure what they are or whether they can be influenced.

        Kindest regards,
        Andrew Cavanagh
        Andrew, I believe backlinks to be very important in anything regarding SEO and rankings, maybe in this case too.

        This is quite easy to test, you can do a massive backlink submission with software like SocialBot, that gives you 120 backlinks or so. If the ranking increases, then it works (and it should).

        Just make sure the backlinks you submit have the link to the map in anchor text for the keyword you want to rank for.

        If you do decide to do this please keep me updated.

        Best of luck,

        Daniel
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