Like other large cities, Boston hosts a very competitive SEO market. In fact, MOZ mentioned that they found Boston, along with Denver and Seattle, even more competitive than their relative populations would initially suggest.
Possibly, the tough SEO climate in these cities comes from the fact that they also house a lot of tech talent. In any case, it’s important to study the most effective ways for businesses to achieve high SEO rankings in Boston. Take a moment to explore some tips to rank higher for Boston local search queries.
Focus on the Sweet Spots for Local Boston SEO
Users have increasingly relied upon high-intent and mobile searches to find local businesses. In turn, Google hasn’t made any secret out of the fact that they work hard to satisfy their users with the features that their behavior demands the most.
In particular, Google noticed dramatic increases in local searches with phrases like “near me” instead of bothering to add in a ZIP code or neighborhood. Most searchers know that their mobile and even home computers can already pick up on their location and incorporate it into queries. Also, these kinds of searches generally signal intent, so ranking well for them gives companies a chance to attract people who are ready to visit their websites and physical locations.
For Boston Google Search, Focus on Local Packs and Maps
In response to many local searches, Google now offers up what’s known as the Local 3 Pack. This query response generally does two things:
- Google displays a map with pins for the top results to show their locations.
- Right under the map, Google serves detailed information about those businesses that Google considers the best three results.
Even more, Search Engine Land reported upon a study that demonstrated 93 percent of local search queries will result in this kind of result. Also, both the map and the listings get the first position. This would typically force users to scroll to see anything else, thus giving those top three ranking businesses a huge advantage.
How Boston Businesses Get Included in the Google Local 3 Pack
With that in mind, it’s obviously important for businesses to rank as well as possible for one of these top spots. To start, look at the major factors that influence local rankings:
- Google My Business Primary Category and Title: Both the primary category and categories in the Google My Business page title influence rankings. It’s important to structure this listing as well as possible to satisfy likely searches for organizations like yours.
- Google Reviews: Both the total amount of reviews and the number of positive reviews can influence rankings as well. Apparently, Google uses its reviews to help determine which results will best satisfy searchers.
- Business Proximity to User: Of course, businesses typically won’t change their physical locations. Still, it’s an interesting ranking factor to note for companies that need to select a location. Locations closer to larger populations of potential searchers may help improve search positions.
How to Measure Local Search Traffic From Google My Business Efforts
As with all SEO efforts, businesses need a way to gauge the effectiveness of their efforts to improve their Google My Business listings, number of reviews, and so on. Luckily, Google also provides a handy tool for this. From within their Campaign URL Builder, users can add a UTM, also called an Urchin Tracking Module. The UTM tag gets applied to the end of the URL used in the website field for Google My Business.
Partner With a Proven Boston SEO Company
Even when compared to other cities with similar populations, local businesses find Boston SEO very competitive. Since high local search rankings for a Boston Google search can prove invaluable for attracting new customers, prudent businesses will want to consider working with an SEO company that can help their clients rise to the top. Contact us here at Temper and Forge, a Boston SEO company.