For instance, last fall Google truncated its layout for desktop searches from a “seven pack” of featured local business listings to a “three pack,” partly to better align the desktop view with the mobile user experience. What’s more, there are indications that soon this layout will be further shaved down to just two local business listings.
In other words, if you ranked fourth in a local search in the past, your listing would appear on the first page of Google’s “local pack” results. Now, you won’t—making your business that much more difficult to find. If you let these changes slide by unnoticed, this could mean a major drop in web traffic and calls from new customers.
If you rely on local search to get leads—and most small businesses do—it’s essential that your business is one of the top results. To maintain your business’ visibility and its place in organic search results it’s more important than ever to claim and correct all your business listing info in online directories. Here’s why:
- Claiming and updating all your business listings is an important part of search-engine optimization (SEO), which in turn maximizes your position in results—even in the face of unexpected changes.
- Even a business that manages to be featured in Google’s local three pack won’t win many new customers if your hours of operation or phone number are out of date or missing.
- Maintaining your online business listings is a small time investment—with no advanced tech knowledge required—in exchange for a potentially huge ROI.