Smartphone penetration in the UK has topped 50% and smartphone owners are on average never more than 3 feet away from their device. Local search is set by default on Google’s mobile results and takes into account GPS functionality on mobile devices. 75% of mobile owners who perform “generic” keyword searches will see local results – meaning the majority of smartphone owners are now “LoMo” searchers.
The search results interface for mobile searches is usually very different to the desktop results. Google Maps results tend to be shown first, prior to organic listings – and even these organic results tend to be influenced by user location settings.
Google knows users are more likely to convert via a service that is local to them, and as such has given great priority to delivering what it deems to be the most relevant results to users via local search.
Google map specific results are also not inhibited by Google algorithmic penalties – and this therefore creates the opportunity for a business to leverage more qualified local traffic with a stronger chance of conversion in the short term. At the same time remedial work (link removal) can be carried out on a penalised site, whilst working on strengthen the domain through quality link building.
Optimisation of Google+ Local listings is about increasing SERP visibility and thus driving more customers both to your website and directly to your premises. Many variants of primary phrases when “localised” (either by the addition of a regional keyword qualifier or by having local search enabled in Google), result in a combination of Google+ Local results with organic results on page one.
At WMG we have identified many improvements that can be made to Google+ Local Listings and are confident that our methodologies would result in ranking improvements in both Google+ Local listing and organic results with localised search is enabled.