Google’s Local Pack: A Guide For Local Businesses

Written by Matthew Ludden / January 19, 2024 / 7 Minute Read
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Discover the power of the Google Local Pack for local businesses. Learn how to optimize your Google Business Profile, encourage customer reviews, and implement local SEO best practices to boost visibility and drive traffic. Get insights on common challenges and the future of the Local Pack.


What Is The Google Local Pack?

When you search Google for a business, product, or service, local search results include a box with a map and a list of businesses at the top of the search results.

This is the Google Local Pack, a critical feature for users to discover local businesses. In digital marketing, local SEO companies help local businesses aiming to stand out in search engine results increase visibility in the local pack.

The Google Local pack (or Google Map Pack) has evolved and continues to develop as Google improves the user experience in local search. Generally, the local pack showcases the top three local business listings related to a search query. Essential information such as the business name, category, contact information, and customer reviews are displayed.

Local Intent 46%
Around 46% of all searches have local intent.
Local Pack 93%
At least 93% will include a local pack within the results.

Why Is The Google Local Pack Important For Local Businesses?

The prominence of the Local Pack in local search results highlights its importance for local businesses seeking visibility and customer engagement in the digital landscape. Around 46% of all searches have local intent, and among these searches, at least 93% will include a local pack within the results.

having your business listing featured in the Google Local Pack significantly boosts online visibility, placing your business front and center in search results when potential customers are actively searching for the products or services you offer.

This prominent placement not only increases the likelihood of clicks and website visits but also enhances your business’s credibility in the eyes of consumers.

In a competitive digital landscape, securing a spot in the Local Pack can set your local business apart from competitors and drive more foot traffic to your physical business location.

Impact on Visibility and Traffic

The Google Local Pack has a profound impact on a business’s online visibility and website traffic. By appearing in the top three local listings, businesses are more likely to be noticed by users who are ready to contact a service business or visit a store.

This increased visibility leads to higher click-through rates. With a click-through rate of over 48%, the Google Map Pack drives more potential customers to your website or Google Business Profile. As a result, businesses featured in the Local Pack often experience a significant uptick in online and offline traffic.

Influence on Customer Trust and Engagement

Being featured in the Google Map Pack also plays a crucial role in building customer trust and engagement.

The presence of customer reviews and ratings within the Local Pack listings provides social proof, reassuring potential customers of the quality and reliability of your business.

This transparency fosters trust, encouraging users to engage with your business by visiting your website, making a phone call, or physically stopping by your location.

With 99.9% of local search users checking online reviews, a highly-rated business listing is key to success. Ultimately, the Local Pack helps create a positive first impression that can lead to lasting customer relationships.

CTR 48%
Google Map Pack can earn a click-through rate of over 48%.
Google Reviews 99.9%
At a reported 99.9%, nearly all local users see online reviews of businesses.

Can A Marketing Agency Improve Your Local Pack Rankings?

Google Business Profile Management is a specialized service to boost local organic search results. Local SEO experts use insights and tools to optimize your Google Business Profile.

Hiring a marketing agency helps research local rankings and the local intent of users. Agencies can also help identify the most relevant keywords and categories for your business, enhancing visibility in local search results.

Working with the right agency can cultivate customer reviews, a crucial factor in Local Pack rankings.

By leveraging their experience and resources, a marketing agency can effectively boost your online presence in Google Maps, attract more local customers, and ultimately improve your rankings in the Google Local Pack.

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How To Optimize Your Business For The Google Local Pack

Optimizing your business for the Google Maps and Local Pack starts with some basic steps. Begin by claiming your Google Business Profile.

Accurate and comprehensive information about your business is key to having any opportunity to appear in the Google Map pack. Fortunately, the majority of business owners can optimize a Google Business Profile (GBP).

Attention to key details can set your business listing apart from other competitor business locations near you.

  • Business name: NAP (name, address, phone) should be consistent across all of your online business listings. Your complete physical address should be used so consumers can find you in Google Maps.
  • Business category: Many businesses choose one primary category. Google allows you to choose all of the services and products that your business offers.
  • Business hours: Ensuring your hours are accurate improves customer experiences. Local searchers
  • Business Description: Provide users with a preview of your business. Your GBP is like a second homepage for your business. Showcase your unique value proposition.
  • Photos and Posts: Whether you have a physical location or you are a service area business, dynamic photos, and regular posts help your GBP appear professional and distinct from other businesses.
  • Booking and Messaging: You can add online bookings and allow users to message you through your GBP.
  • Website URL: The primary goal of local SEO is to improve your online visibility. Adding your website domain is a no-brainer.
  • Customer reviews and ratings: The more reviews your GBP has, the more likely you are to rank in relevant searches.

Encouraging Customer Reviews and Ratings

Among local SEO strategies, earning positive reviews from satisfied customers is at the top of the list.

People trust online reviews, and positive reviews make it easy for them to choose your business in search engine results pages versus a poorly reviewed business.

Providing links to your Google Business Profile on your website, in email signatures, on QR codes, and in text messaging can quickly earn more reviews and boost your Google Map pack rankings.

It is important to respond to all reviews, whether positive or negative, to demonstrate your commitment to customer satisfaction. Positive reviews and high ratings can significantly boost your visibility in the Local Pack.

Local SEO Best Practices

All local search engine optimization best practices should be used to boost your local search ranking.

While there are some variations depending on your business type and industry, generally, local SEO includes optimizing your website content with relevant local keywords, ensuring your business information is consistent across all online platforms, and building local backlinks from reputable sources.

A comprehensive local SEO strategy can lift local organic search results inside and out of the map pack.

Common Challenges And Solutions For Ranking In The Google Local Pack

One common challenge businesses face when trying to rank in the Google Local Pack is the high level of competition, especially in densely populated areas.

To overcome this, focus on niche-specific keywords and ensure your Google Business Profile is as detailed and engaging as possible. The Google Map Pack matters, and sometimes you need to consult professional local pack SEO experts to help.

For eligible businesses, Google Local Services Ads Management is a powerful way for businesses to enhance their visibility in local search results. When users search for services in their area, these ads appear prominently at the top of the search results, including the map pack.

This increased visibility in search queries can lead to more clicks and inquiries from potential customers. Additionally, businesses that use Local Services Ads are vetted by Google, which can increase consumer trust. By effectively targeting local customers who are actively searching for specific services, businesses can improve their chances of being noticed and chosen, leading to increased traffic and potentially more sales.

The Future Of The Google Local Pack

As Google continues to refine its algorithms, the future of the Google Local Pack is likely to see even more emphasis on relevance and user experience.

Businesses should anticipate changes that prioritize mobile optimization, user-generated content like reviews, and hyper-local search results.

To stay ahead, keep a close eye on evolving SEO trends, continuously update your Google Business Profile, and focus on providing exceptional service that encourages positive reviews and customer engagement.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

The Local Pack and Local Finder serve similar purposes but appear in different contexts.

The Local Pack is the box that appears in Google local search results and only features 2-3 local businesses.

At the bottom of the local pack, the ‘more places’ button opens the comprehensive list. This larger list is the Local Finder. When a user searches a business directly in Google Maps, the local finder appears offering results for a larger number of listings and more detailed information about each business.

Yes, the terms “Google Local Map Pack” and “Local Pack” often refer to the same thing.

As Google has updated products, Google Local and Google My Business evolved. When someone searches from a browser, certain results include the Local Pack. This may include only business listings or in many cases a map showing business addresses. Both Google Business Profiles and Google Local Services Ads are displayed.

Google Maps is a mobile app that function similarly. For example when someone searches Google Maps for “plumber near me,” contact information and locations appear.

Both the Google Map Pack and Local Pack describe the feature in Google’s search results that displays a map along with a list of local businesses that match the user’s search query.

Google Local Pack ranking refers to the order in which businesses appear in the Local Pack.

The ranking is determined by factors such as relevance to the search query, proximity to the searcher’s location, and the business’s overall prominence online, which includes ranking factors, like review quantity and quality.

When Google Local Services Ads, these sponsored business listings will also place in the top position on the top organic search and search engine results page.