7 Essential Tips To Rank In The Charleston Google Local 3-Pack
Updated: Sep 11
The local Google 3-pack ranking is important for businesses in the Charleston area because it's one of the first places people look when they're looking for local businesses in their area. In order to rank in the Google local 3-pack, businesses must optimize their website and local listings for Google Business Profile (formerly Google My Business) business listing. Local businesses in the Charleston Lowcountry area can follow these local search tips to rank higher, increase their presence on Google Maps move into the local pack, and bring in more business, whether they have a physical location or are strictly an online business.
Optimize Your Website for Local SEO
Another essential ranking factor is to make sure your business is optimized for local SEO so that it appears in search engine results when people are searching for local businesses in your area. Include keywords in your site content that relates to your Lowcountry local business and location and can increase local rankings. For example, if you're a plumber in Summerville, you want to include keywords like "plumbing" and "Summerville" on your website.
Building links is another key factor for optimizing your business for local SEO and creating more opportunities to show in the Google 3 pack. Links are like votes for local businesses and the more votes (links) your website has, the higher it will rank in local search engine results. You can build links by listing your business in online directories, getting reviews and testimonials from customers, and guest blogging on related websites.
Make sure your site is mobile-friendly. More and more people are using their smartphones to search the internet, and if your website isn't optimized for mobile devices, it will likely be buried in the search results.
In fact, 9 out of 10 smartphone users have not yet chosen a particular brand when they perform an internet search for a product or service.
Google Maps will also demote websites that aren't mobile-friendly. Local ranking factors are also influenced by how fast your site loads, so make sure to keep your website's size and loading speed in mind when optimizing for the local 3 Pack.
Include high-quality photos in the marketing of your website. People are visual creatures, and good-quality photos will help to make your site more visually appealing in Google's local searches, which can help to draw in more traffic. It's also important to use Alt-Text in your photos, which is a brief description of what the photo is. This helps search engines to index your photos so that they appear in image search results so that you can rank higher.
Finally, make sure you keep all your Charleston local business web page content fresh. Search engines like websites that are regularly updated with new content, so try to add new blog posts or other types of content on a regular basis. These local SEO ranking factors will help your website to appear higher on local search engine results page rankings, which can help you to attract more business.
Get Listed in Online Directories
One of the best ways to improve your ranking in the "local 3 pack" is to get your business listed in as many online directories as possible. Online directories are websites that list businesses in specific categories, and they can help to improve your visibility in local searches.
Some popular local online directories for businesses in the Charleston area include the Charleston Regional Development Alliance, the Charleston Business License Directory, and the Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce. Getting listed in these local directories is a good way to improve your opportunities to make it in the Google 3 pack for local searches.
Claim Your Google Business Profile Listing
If you haven't already, claiming your Google Business Profile (formerly Google My Business) listing is essential for ranking higher in local results and potentially in the local 3 pack. Once you claim your listing, make sure all of your information is up-to-date and accurate. Add photos, hours of operation, and category tags to help improve your organic ranking. Optimizing your Google listing is a free and easy way to improve your local SEO and aim for the 3 Pack.
As the owner or manager of a business in Charleston SC, you can control what appears in your business's profile on Google and make sure that your information is accurate and up-to-date for relevant searches.
To get started, sign in to Google Business Profile and select the listing you'd like to manage. If you don't have a listing yet, learn how to create one or claim an existing one. One of the benefits of doing this is that you can see how users are finding your business on Google Maps and Search.
Another benefit of claiming your profile is that you can get insights about your listing, such as how customers find you and what actions they take on your listing. For example, you can see how many times people click to call your business directly from your listing. You can also see how many views your profile receives from the Knowledge Graph panel on Google Search.
Claiming your Google Profile listing is one of the most important things you can do for your business. Not only does it help improve your local rankings in the Google local 3 pack, but it also gives you digital marketing insights into how searchers are finding and interacting with your local business.
Optimizing and maintaining your business's Google My Business profile is important for two reasons. First, it helps potential customers find accurate information about your business when they search for it on Google.
Second, it gives you the opportunity to control the narrative about your business. You can choose what information appears in your profile, and you can make sure that the information is accurate and up-to-date. As a result, optimizing your profile is an essential part of managing your online reputation.
After you claim your GBP listing, optimize it by adding as much information as possible about your Charleston area business. Include business hours, categories, photos, videos, and a detailed
Using Images in Google Business Profile Has Increased Revenue Per Visitor By 17%
description of your business. The more information you can provide, the better because it will help improve your ranking in the local three-pack.
Don't forget to also optimize your Google Business Profile for SEO by including relevant keywords in your description. Including keywords will help improve your visibility in search results and make it easier for people to find your business. The reason this is so important is that when customers search for businesses like yours, they are more likely to click on a listing that is optimized for SEO.
Google uses reviews when determining which businesses to rank in the local 3 pack. So, it's important to get as many "real" positive reviews as possible. You can ask customers to leave reviews on your Google listing or on third-party sites like Yelp.
When I say "real" reviews, I mean ones that are actually from people who have interacted with your business. Don't try to game the system by leaving fake reviews or paying someone for positive reviews (this is against Google guidelines).
53% of customers expect businesses to respond to negative reviews within a week. 1 in 3 have a shorter time frame of 3 days or less.
There are a few things you can do to encourage reviews:
-Make it easy for them. Include links to your Google Business listing and third-party review sites on your website and in your email signature. Marketing collateral like receipts and business cards are also great places to include links to your listings.
-Thank them. Show appreciation to customers who take the time to visit and write a review. This will encourage others to do the same.
-Respond to negative reviews. If you get a negative review, thank the customer for their feedback and try to resolve the issue. This shows that you're willing to listen to and address customer concerns. Never leave a negative review unanswered. And please respond in a professional manner (no matter how angry the customer may be).
After you've set up and optimized your Google Business Profile, make sure to keep your business information updated and accurate, and take some time each week to stay active on your GBP page. There's nothing worse than marketing an outdated presence on a Google business listing and services. Staying active on your page helps show Google that your business is relevant, reliable, up-to-date, and worth the visit.
To stay active:
Post regular updates to your GBP page - Include your phone number and even address location to create a relevant call-to-action.
As I mentioned above, respond to reviews left by customers
Monitor your Insights to see how customers are interacting with your business online
Use Google messaging to communicate directly with customers
By staying active on your GBP page, you can help ensure that your business listing is accurate and up-to-date, which can help improve your chances of showing up in relevant search results, especially the coveted Google 3 Pack, and ultimately drive more users to your business.
Create and Optimize Your NAP
As a small business in Charleston SC, you're likely always looking for ways to improve your Google organic rankings. One way to rank higher is by optimizing your NAP, or name, address, and phone number. Having accurate and up-to-date NAP information is essential for local search if you want to appear in the pack rankings of Google.
An inconsistent or inaccurate NAP can lead to frustrated users and potentially lost leads.
Google uses these factors to verify your business's web authenticity and to determine your location. Make sure that your NAP presence is consistent across all platforms, including your website, social media profiles, and online directory listings. As you update your NAP site information, be sure to also update any citations that point to your old information.
NAP optimization is a simple but effective way to improve your local search ranking. By taking the time to ensure that your NAP information is accurate and consistent, you can help your business stand out in the Charleston area and can improve your Google Local 3-Pack ranking possibilities.
Add Schema Markup
Schema markup is code that you can add to your website to give search engines more organic information about your business, products, and services. Local Charleston Lowcountry businesses can use schema markup to improve their local SEO and their chances of appearing in the Google local 3-pack listings.
To add schema markup to your website, you'll need to edit your site's code. If you're not comfortable doing this yourself, you can hire a web developer or SEO consultant to help you. For example, you can add code that includes your phone number, address and location, reviews, and more.
Another benefit – especially in terms of preparing your websites for the future of search – is that using Schema makes your websites eligible to be included in voice search results (by Alexa, Google Assistant, Siri, etc.).
Once you've added schema markup to your website, be sure to test it using Google's Rich Results Testing Tool. This will help you ensure that your code is working properly and that your business information is being displayed correctly to users in local search results.
Optimizing your website for local SEO is one of the most important factors in the process of ranking in the Google 3-pack listings. By adding schema markup to your website, you help increase organic visibility and give the Google search engine more information about your business, making it easier for them to find and display your listing in searches.
Wrapping It Up
As a business owner in the Charleston Lowcountry, you know that appearing in the top three spots of the local Google 3-Pack is key to getting found by more potential customers. But what exactly do you need to do to make that happen?
Local SEO is a complex and ever-changing beast, but there are some tried and true methods that will help you rise to the top. Optimizing your website for local SEO, claiming and optimizing your Google Business Profile, getting reviews, staying active on social media, and adding schema markup are all great ways to increase your chances of ranking in the 3-Pack.
Of course, no one can guarantee that you'll achieve that coveted first page ranking. But by following these tips, you'll be well on your way to increasing your visibility and attracting new customers.
What are you waiting for? Rank in the Google 3 Pack!
Need help with your local SEO and local Google 3 Pack ranking? Brand U Media is a Charleston, SC, based digital marketing agency that specializes in helping businesses like yours get found online. Contact us today for a free consultation.