Q: Chris, we don’t rank very well, actually we don’t show up at all, on Google maps. Our competition is. We’re not sure what to do? Any advice?
A: Yes. Two things.
1) First, claim and fully complete your Google My Business listing. It’s a bit time-consuming but it is free and fairly easy to do. https://mybusiness.google.com
2) Next, perform an SEO mini-audit. I’ve found that websites that are optimized to rank well at Google tend to be the same websites that show up in maps. A simple audit can be done by reviewing your (1) page title tags, (2) description tags, and (3) page content. All three should have your targeted keywords and keyword phrases that match what brides and grooms are searching for.
Remember, Google rewards and ranks the RAT – relevancy, authority, and trust.
Relevancy is created using keywords and keyword phrases, by writing content that people will read and say “This is exactly what I’m looking for.”
If you have less well-written search optimized content at your website when compared to a competitor you’ll probably never outrank them at Google.
Authority and trust is created when Google sees external links pointing to your website. In simple terms, why would someone with a website link to a lousy website?
Do you belong to the Chamber of Commerce? You should have a business listing and website link there. Most have a wedding business section or category.
Do you belong to any WEDDING ASSOCIATIONS?
Do you exchange links with other wedding vendors to get a thematically similar inbound link? A link from another wedding business is way more valuable than a link from your friend’s Auto Body Shop down the street when trying to get some Google Love.
Here are two more places where Google should see your brand and a link to your website. Properly completed profiles and a link to your website will help create authority and trust.
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Chris Jaeger produces the BOOK MORE WEDDINGS NEWSLETTER and is the Founder and Director of the INTERNATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF WEDDING INDUSTRY PROFESSIONALS (IAWIP). He is a wedding industry marketing veteran with more than 20 years of experience marketing to brides and grooms.