Over the last few years, Google has rolled out a variety of changes to its local search pages. From the ‘address book’ list that precedes the organic search results to large maps on the right side of the page, Google’s local search strategy is now built around location data rather than the standard keyword-driven data of other search pages.


As a result, it’s become more important than ever to optimize your local business website not just for your target keywords, but for your target location. With many searchers using Google to find location-based businesses – ‘Christchurch painting,’ for example – optimizing for local search pages is now a vital marketing strategy.


The easiest way to optimize your website for local search pages is to include your full business address and phone number on your contact page. Google scans all of the websites in its index for location-based information and uses it as the backbone of its local search results.


If your business is located in a region with little competition, an address alone is often enough to take your website to the top of the map and address book ranks. More competitive cities may require a combination of addresses and targeted link building, which can have a synergistic impact on your website’s search position.


There are secondary benefits to listing your address and phone number on your business website that go beyond an enhanced search placement. Many searchers will call phone numbers that they see listed in the search results without clicking through to the website that the number belongs to.


By listing your phone number in your website’s description, you can generate leads from the search engine pages without searchers having to click. You may be shocked by the number of customers that will call you without clicking through to visit your website, purely because your number convenient appeared in the search results.


There’s more to search marketing than just link building and keywords. By adding a business address and local phone number to your local business website, you could improve your Google Maps listings, boost your position in ‘address book’ searches, and even generate free leads from a phone number in your meta description.