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Mastering Google Maps Pack: A Guide to Local SEO Success

Mastering Google Maps Pack: A Guide to Local SEO Success
Tobias Roelen-Blasberg
Co-Founder & Head of Product
Unlock local business success with our comprehensive guide to mastering Google Maps Pack. Elevate visibility, build credibility, and engage customers effectively to stay ahead of search results this 2024.
Mastering Google Maps Pack: A Guide to Local SEO Success
TABLE OF CONTENTS

More than 1 billion people use Google Maps every month. This figure alone shows how crucial it is for local businesses to have a robust presence on the platform.

The Google Maps Pack has been on the Google SERPs since 2015. Despite this, only a handful of SMEs worldwide have enjoyed all its benefits. This blog will teach you how to secure a prominent position in local search results, and how to convert such valuable traffic into actual revenue channel.

What is the Google Maps Pack?

The Google Map Pack, also known as the Local Pack, is a prominent feature in Google's search engine results pages (SERPs) that showcases a concise list of local businesses relevant to a user's search query. Typically appearing at the top of the page and accompanied by a map interface, it highlights three businesses, providing essential information such as names, reviews, and contact details. This feature aims to facilitate users in quickly finding and engaging with local businesses, making it a crucial element for businesses striving to enhance their visibility in local search results.

screenshot google maps pack hotels miami
The top 3 hotels in Miami according to Google Maps pack.

SEO researches suggest that 44% of Google users click on the local pack before proceeding to other search results. Needless to say, showing up in the Google 3-pack means getting more visibility. Aside from this, 93% of consumers use Google Maps to find a business, which also features the local pack. Optimizing your Google Business listing for the local pack allows you to boost your search visibility on desktop and mobile searches.

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What does local mean on Google?

Google's concept of "local" revolves around providing users with hyper-relevant results based on their geographical location. Local search results aim to connect users with businesses in their vicinity, offering a personalized experience.

Wondering how relevant Google's local SERPs are? In 2022, 87% of consumers used Google to evaluate local businesses. Aside from this, another survey shows that 60% of smartphone users immediately reached out to local businesses after appearing on their Google searches.

What is the difference between the Local Finder and Local Pack?

The Local Finder is an extended version of the Local Pack, displaying a more comprehensive list of businesses in a specific area. The Local Pack, on the other hand, presents a concise snapshot, typically featuring three businesses prominently.

For instance, in this Google search, these three cafes constitute the Local Pack.

screenshot google local 3-pack best croissants paris
Google Local 3-Pack for best croissants in Paris.

On the other hand, all these listings fall under the Local finder result.

screenshot local finder search best croissants paris
Expanded Local Pack search, the Local Finder.

What is the difference between Map Pack and Local Pack?

While often used interchangeably, the Map Pack is an expanded version that incorporates a map interface, indicating the geographical distribution of the listed businesses. The Map Pack is mostly used on the Google Maps app, but Google opted to display its results for web searches, too.

screenshot google maps pack
The Google Maps pack, including an extensive view of the Google Maps.

The Local Pack, on the other hand, primarily showcases brief details without the visual map component. Google users would need to click on the listing to see the complete information of the listing.

screenshot miami printing google local pack
Google Local Pack results which may or may not reflect Google Maps.

Why is Google Local Pack important?

Google Local Pack holds paramount importance for businesses striving to capture local markets. Key reasons include:

Visibility

The Local Pack enjoys a prime position at the top of search engine results pages (SERPs), offering businesses a coveted spot that significantly increases visibility among users seeking local services or products.

Credibility

68% of searchers trust local 3-Pack listings. Securing a position in the Local Pack enhances a business's credibility and trustworthiness in the eyes of potential customers. High rankings suggest that Google recognizes the business as a reputable and relevant local entity.

User Convenience

91.5% of Google traffic stays on the first page. Who would need the second page? The Local Pack provides users with swift and relevant information about local businesses, including names, ratings, and contact details. This user-friendly format allows individuals to make informed decisions efficiently, contributing to a positive user experience and increasing the likelihood of engagement with the listed businesses.

Competitive Edge

There's no denying that Google can now determine the competitiveness of a business within its niche, especially for local businesses. Being featured in the Local Pack offers a competitive advantage over businesses that are not listed, as users are more likely to explore options within the visible pack rather than scrolling through additional search results.

Increased Click-Through Rates

The listings that appear on the Google Maps pack generate a whopping 68.7% CTR. Businesses in the Local Pack often experience higher click-through rates, as users are more inclined to interact with conveniently presented information at the top of the search results, leading to potential conversions and business growth.

How do I rank in Google Map Pack?

While ranking on the Google Maps pack may take some time and a heap of consistent effort, it's not an impossible task. Here are some strategies you can follow:

1. Optimize Google Business listing.

Creating and claiming your Google My Business listing is the foundational step to optimizing your presence on Google Maps. Furthermore, you should ensure that your listing is complete and accurate, providing essential information such as your business name, address, phone number, business hours, and website. Include high-quality images that showcase your business and its offerings. This not only enhances your visibility on Google Maps but also establishes trust among potential customers seeking local products or services.

screenshot du pain et idees menu google business listing
A fully optimized restaurant listing with menu and pricing.

To learn more about optimizing your Google Business listing, read our complete guide.

2. Consistently collect Google Reviews.

Actively deploy review collection strategies, be it through your physical store or your online platforms. Send follow-up emails, use Google Review stickers on your store, or offer incentives to motivate customers to leave feedback. Encourage satisfied clients to share their experiences, as each review will not just boost your visibility on the Google Maps pack but also contribute to a positive online reputation.

screenshot google review request email
Sample of a Google Review request email. Source: Unlayer

Consequently, aim for a diverse range of reviews that reflect various aspects of your business. While positive reviews build credibility, having a mix of feedback, including constructive criticism on negative reviews, demonstrates transparency and authenticity. This balanced approach provides potential customers with a comprehensive understanding of your business's strengths and areas for improvement.

3. Respond to each Google Review.

Responding to Google Reviews is a vital aspect of managing your online reputation and fostering a positive relationship with customers. By actively engaging with reviews, you demonstrate transparency and a commitment to addressing customer feedback. Prompt responses to positive reviews express gratitude and reinforce positive experiences. Meanwhile, professionally and empathetically addressing concerns in negative reviews showcases your dedication to resolving issues and improving customer satisfaction. In today's digital age, leveraging advanced tools can streamline and enhance the review response process.

screenshot google business listing meininger hotel hamburg city center google review reply
Sample of a Google Business listing that consistently responds to Google Reviews.

Fortunately, responding to Google Reviews could be the least of your concerns as writing responses can be 3x faster, thanks to MARA AI Review Reply Generator. The software allows you to reduce response times and associated costs significantly. Unlike template-driven responses, MARA ensures a personal touch in each reply, generating unique and human-like responses that make customers feel valued.

Moreover, MARA contributes to improving your overall star rating by facilitating responses to every review. Studies show that actively engaging with reviews can positively impact your online reputation, not only in the eyes of current customers but also in potential future customers. Achieve a 100% response rate effortlessly with MARA's state-of-the-art AI, boosting your online visibility and customer trust.

Want to see how MARA can help you rank on Google Maps pack? Register for a FREE ACCOUNT today.

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4. Build citations.

Maintain consistent business information, including Name, Address, and Phone Number (NAP), across various online platforms and directories. Consistency in NAP data enhances your business's trustworthiness in the eyes of search engines and contributes to improved rankings on Google Maps.

screenshot google business listing hotel hafen hamburg nap
A Google Business listing with complete NAP details.

This is especially important for businesses with multiple locations and franchises. Once Google Maps fails to distinguish the differences among your listings, Google wouldn't just skip ranking your Google Business accounts but even go as far as deactivating them.

5. Improve local signals.

Aside from business information, you should also optimize your website content with relevant local keywords to align with the search intent of local audiences. Incorporate location-specific phrases naturally within your website's meta tags, headings, and content to enhance its relevance for local searches.

screenshot holiday inn hamburg overview
An excellent Google Business listing overview with local keywords.

Furthermore, recognizes the significance of user interactions with mobile devices in local searches. It's best to link your Google listing with Google Business Messages or Reserve with Google. Aside from boosting your conversion rates, these seamless reservation channels can help you boost your visibility on Google searches as the platform is notified that your listing is active. The more user interaction a listing gets, the higher it ranks.

6. Add Google Business posts.

Leverage Google Business posts to provide regular updates, promotions, and announcements directly on your Google My Business listing. Keeping your audience informed with timely and relevant content enhances user engagement and contributes to a dynamic and active online presence.

screenshot junzi kitchen google posts
A Google Business restaurant listing with updated Google posts.

Create visually appealing and informative Google Business posts that capture the attention of users. Utilize a mix of images, videos, and concise text to convey your message effectively. Engaging content not only attracts users but also reinforces your brand's personality and uniqueness.

7. Explore Google Mapping.

The Google Maps Platform is a set of APIs and SDKs that allows developers to embed Google Maps into mobile apps and web pages, or to retrieve data from Google Maps. Integrating maps on your website and other online platforms provides visitors with a clear understanding of your business location and reinforces its physical presence. This not only aids in user navigation but also contributes to improved rankings on Google Maps.

screenshot website google maps
Sample of a website running Google Maps API. Source: Create

Explore Google Mapping tools to maximize visibility in local searches. Leverage features such as location tagging and business attributes to provide additional context to your business. This proactive approach enhances your business's overall visibility and accessibility in local search results.

How do I rank higher on Google Maps in 2024?

Google regularly updates its algorithm across its numerous platforms to ensure the recency and relevance of its content to its users. In fact, on the recent update of Google Business, several listings lost significant traffic.

Here's how you can stay ahead of the Google Maps ranking in 2024.

Adaptation

Stay informed about Google's algorithm changes, as these adjustments can significantly impact your business's visibility. Regularly monitor industry updates, follow Google's official communications, and adapt your strategies accordingly. Being proactive in understanding and implementing changes ensures your business remains optimized for the latest ranking factors.

Visual Appeal

Leverage the power of high-quality images and videos to enhance the visual appeal of your Google Maps listing. 91% of consumers prefer visuals more than plain text–they don't just capture the attention of potential customers but also contribute to a positive first impression. Invest in visually compelling assets that showcase your business, products, and services, helping you stand out in search results and attract more users to your listing.

User Experience

Prioritize a seamless and user-friendly experience across all your online touchpoints. This includes optimizing your visual and text content integrating booking options to your Google Business listing. A positive user experience not only improves your Google Maps ranking but also enhances customer satisfaction, encouraging positive reviews and repeat business. Consistency in delivering an exceptional online experience contributes to long-term success in local search rankings.

Final Thought

Mastering Google Maps Pack requires a multifaceted approach, blending optimization techniques, customer engagement, and strategic use of Google's features. As local searches continue to evolve, businesses that prioritize their Google Maps presence will undoubtedly reap the benefits of heightened visibility, credibility, and customer engagement. Stay informed, stay optimized, and watch your business flourish in the local digital landscape.

This article is part of our hero content series on “Mastering Google Reviews - A Complete Guide".

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Frequently Asked Questions:

What is Google Maps 3 pack?

Google Maps 3 pack, also known as the Local Pack, is a feature in Google's search results displaying a set of three local businesses relevant to a user's search query, providing quick access to essential information.

How do I get Google 3 pack?

To appear in Google 3 pack, optimize your Google My Business listing, gather positive reviews, ensure NAP consistency, improve local signals, add Google Business posts, and leverage Google Mapping tools to enhance your business's visibility in local searches.

How do you rank in local 3-pack?

Ranking in the local 3-pack involves optimizing your Google My Business listing, collecting positive reviews, responding to reviews, building citations, improving local signals with relevant keywords, adding Google Business posts, and utilizing Google Mapping tools for enhanced visibility.

What is the use of Google local?

Google Local, through features like the Local Pack, helps users find and engage with local businesses based on their geographical location. It provides quick, relevant information, enhancing user convenience and offering businesses increased visibility in local search results.

What is the meaning of SERPs?

SERPs stands for Search Engine Results Pages. It refers to the pages displayed by search engines in response to a user's query, showcasing a list of relevant websites and other content related to the search terms.

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