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by Andy Williams on 3rd March 2011
You have your Google Places profile, you have optimised it completing as many fields as possible, but your still not gaining the rankings you expected.
Well much like a web page there is more to ranking than simply optimising the profile, especially if you are in a highly competitive field.
One area that may be lacking is the number of reviews you are receiving.
Gaining reviews from satisfied customers could be the difference between you ranking and just missing out. Reviews will also help build up your Google Places profile.
Google feeds from review sites and the more you gain the better your chances are of gaining some serious SERPs space.
A good example is the Hotel trade. This is a highly competitive sector with every review counting. If we look at (a very generic search) “Hotels in London” you can see just how many reviews the top ranking Hotels are receiving. If you were looking to compete then you need to start gaining some serious feedback.
It’s easy for your customers to leave a review and there are a number of sites where they can do this. Asking customers to review you on sites such as Yelp, TripAdvisor and other sites where you are listed will start to build up your review count. It should be made as straightforward as possible for them to find the sites and a gentle reminder certainly wouldn’t go amiss.
A steady stream of reviews coming in will start to strengthen your profile. If you are in a competitive field the temptation will be there to create “made up” reviews. Even if you appear to be miles away from your competition this isn’t advised. Google and other search engines are constantly on the look out for obvious spam and hoaxes. A sudden influx of reviews will stand out and simply draw attention to your profile. If Google has reason to believe that your reviews aren’t all that they appear to be, you could lose even more ground on your competition.
Some examples of review sites that you should look to be gaining reviews from:
To keep up to date with my latest posts and other issues in the field of local search, follow me on Twitter at @Impact_Andy