My Google Local Presentation From Think Visibility 2010

So this is a few days late I’m afraid but here are my slides from the simply awesome Think Visibility 2010 in Leeds:

Google Local Tips & Tricks by Tom Critchlow

I’d like to say thank you again to Dom for organising such a great event and putting us up in a swanky hotel. Good times all round!

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  1. Thanks for clarifying the 5 major factors of local search ranking - categories, number of reviews, citations, verified (owner claimed listing), distance to centre. Personally I feel distance to centre is less of a factor in determining the 10-pack results in Google Local..?

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  2. Hi Tom,

    Great Presentation!

    Working for a local review Plattform (German market), i can tell, that we are providing Google as their 'Google local content partner' with our full data-set of SMBs including reviews in one huge XML-File.
    From my perspective i just can say, that "distance from center" is totally irrelevant, as long as the competitors don't display reviews. In that case, i found numerous examples, where the distance from the city centre was around 60km (37 miles)and "our" SMBs werde always on top with their reviews... even though their adress was in a totally different city (and they didn't use that new 'Service Area Tool' in the LBC!).

    Therefore thumbs up for Slide 14!

    But i think, it's a dangerous path Google is trying and i already can imagine "reviews companies" working out gazillions of reviews for the local locksmith-industry ;-)


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  3. Hi Tom,

    That's a cool presentation, thanks for sharing!

    One point about the reviews, slide 14, what if you had a hundred 1 star reviews, and nothing else? Would your 'quantity over quality' rule still apply?


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  4. thanks for the clarification on the most important factors on local search ranking. I'm in the industry of hotel seo and affiliates sites.. Having a listing in the local Google map section can make or break a site.. It can save years of hard link building and seo if you can get your site to the top of the local listings

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  5. It's important that the local search is used correctly as its easy to get listings removed that seem or are spammy.

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  6. Hi Tom - any thoughts on my original question? Also - how has the organic merge results for local effective your views?

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  7. Hey Andrew,

    Apologies for missing your original question. We've been doing a bunch of stuff internally to analyse the new results - quite a lot has changed around but we're not ready to publish anything just yet. Maybe in the next few months :)

    As for quality of reviews, I've never explicitely tested your approach but I suspect too many negative reviews would hurt you. Especially in light of the recent NYT times article about negative marketing.

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  8. I think that the system is too innacurate at the moment. If you do a search for “Islington solicitors” it shows a list of solicitors, only 2 of which are actually in Islington (and these on the border of the borough, indicated by the red line on the map below), the other 8 being in the City of London.

    Apparently the reason for this is pr? Although I thought it was approximation to the location? Any ideas with this guys?

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