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When Will Google Fix My Street View Image?

When Will Google Fix My Street View Image?

Back of the Peace Eye Care BuildingOnce upon a time…Nashville’s Peace Eyecare gained a new patient. This patient searched for the office on Google and was presented with this Street View image (left). Not very helpful, right? The patient wondered whether she was headed to a legitimate optometrist, or to an underground speakeasy that dealt in gold teeth and excised molars.

Storytime aside, Google captured this image in April 2014. Why they chose to drive around the back of the building as opposed to the front is anyone’s guess, but hey, Google does unexpected things all the time (like update your business’s address, mark it as closed without your permission, and taking really bizarre Google Street View images).

This is one of many examples of moments Google just doesn’t get right. Thankfully, the search giant is updating a whole host of Street View images and has published a Street View update schedule for the year that includes which countries, states, and cities it’ll be visiting. Is your area on the list?

Before the end of 2017, Google will be trekking through Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Washington, and Wisconsin.

Google isn’t right 100% of the time. Who is? Unfortunately, slips like this can damage a business’s foot traffic and brand awareness. If one of your business’s locations has an incorrect Street View image, you can do one of three things: wait for Google to make another pass in front of your business; manually edit the image through Google My Business; or reach out to GPO for help managing your listings.

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Links Are Hot, Reviews Are Smokin, but Proximity Is Smoldering

Links Are Hot, Reviews Are Smokin, but Proximity Is Smoldering

There are dozens of factors at play when it comes to visibility in local search, factors that seem to ebb and flow in importance with every confirmed (and unconfirmed) algorithm update. In Moz’s 2017 Local Search Ranking Factors Survey, industry experts come together to help businesses and marketers make sense of these factors, narrow their focus, and gain a better understanding of what drives local search results.

The survey speaks to what it takes to make it in the local 3-pack and gain high visibility in local organic search results. (And if you’re not sure where these coveted spots are, just take a look at the below screenshot.) We encourage you to grab a cup of coffee and dig into the extensive survey results. While your coffee brews, read on for a quick overview of the survey’s top findings.

Example of local map pack results and local organic results

Local map ranking factors

This year’s results show a shake-up in factors that affect local 3-pack results.

  • Proximity to the searcher is the new number one ranking factor in local search results. If your location isn’t actually close to the searcher, it’s going to be tough to grab a spot in the 3-pack.
  • Proper Google My Business category associations and quality structured citations remain foundational to gaining visibility in the local 3-pack. Accuracy is a must.
  • Review signal importance increased over the past year, suggesting that Google is rewarding businesses with a higher quantity and variety of reviews.
  • Link signals (including the quality and quantity of inbound links to a site) took over as the second most important group of ranking factors.

Local organic ranking factors

Ranking signals for localized organic search results didn’t see as big of a shake-up as local 3-pack signals.

  • Link signals remain the most important category of ranking factors in 2017, with “quality/authority of inbound links to domain” surpassing “domain authority” as the primary ranking factor.
  • “Diversity of inbound links to domain” and “quantity of inbound links to domain” both increased in importance.
  • Click-through rate from search results and having a mobile-friendly/responsive site remain two of the top ten ranking factors.

So what? Ah, where do we start! Local search expert Darren Shaw summed up the survey results in plain language pretty well. In his blog post announcing the survey results, he wrote:

“You need to have a physical location in the city you’re trying to rank in, and it’s helpful for it to be close to the searcher. Then, make sure to have the proper categories associated with your listing, and get your citations built out and consistent on the most important sites. Now, to really move the needle, focus on getting links and reviews.”

Moz’s findings underline a business’s need to engage in a variety of activities in order to compete for a few precious spots in the local 3-pack and the first page of organic results. Businesses with higher relevance, stronger link profiles, more reviews, and an impressive accuracy rate will rank in a wider radius around their business and eat up a larger percentage of the local search pie.

Got that cup of coffee ready? Browse the full survey results here.