How is Google Ranking the Local 7-Pack Listings?

Posted by Mark Thompson - October 21, 2009 - SEO - 5 Comments

Now that Google has condensed its local business listing results in the SERPs from 10 to 7, it is important to improve your LBL rankings.  After reading many articles and blogs, including David Mihm’s Local Search Ranking Factors and through lots of experience with our clients, I am convinced that proximity to the center of the city is a bigger factor that people think.  I understand that Google’s LBL algorithm is much more complex than just showing business listings close to the city searched, but there is a lot of evidence that proves your physical address is a significant factor.

Here are just a few examples of Google 7-pack results.

Search for “Web Design Raleigh”

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Six out of the top seven listings are located in the heart of Raleigh.

Search for “Lawyers Raleigh”

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Six out of the top seven listings are located in the heart of Raleigh.

Search for “Architects Raleigh”

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Seven out of the top seven listings are located in the heart of Raleigh.

You can do a search for almost any industry in a localized area and you will see a noticeable trend in businesses being shown that are close to the proximity to the center of the city. My personal opinion is that after analyzing a lot of these sites that rank in the top 7-pack, many of them are not worthy of being the most relevant sites in Google local business search results.  I have noticed that some of these sites are fairly new domains, using a keyword spammed company title, and have an incomplete business listing.

I would be interested in hearing what others have thought and if they have noticed the same trends in the LBL rankings.

About the Author

Mark Thompson

Mark is the creator of StayOnSearch and president of Search Creatively, a full-service Internet Marketing Company located in Raleigh, North Carolina. He also contributes to many industry related blogs including Search Engine Journal and is active on Facebook and Twitter. Follow Mark on Twitter