What Examining 150,000 Small Business Websites Reveals About Local SEO

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In order to rank highly in search results, especially Local search results, it’s important to consider what factors are involved. One of the best ways to gauge this is by examining websites that are already in these spots—and those that aren’t. FreshChalk has done that just. As a matter of fact, they’ve examined a massive 150,000 small business websites to determine what’s important for Local SEO.

Let’s take a look when they found.

Important Notes

To start, take a look at the key SEO factors they found.

FreshChalk’s study is comprehensive. I want to go over some of their most important findings, however. One of which is that they found almost 2% of small business websites are marked as “noindex”. This is essentially suicide for search engines. Marking websites or web pages as noindex means you’re telling the search engine to not include them in search engines.

These are the hosts that are marking websites as Noindex.

Adam Doppelt of FreshChalk writes, “Businesses with 4 or more stars on Google My Business outrank those with less than 4 stars by a median 11%.” Good reviews from customers and clients are extremely not only for the image of your business but for Google’s SEO algorithm as well. If customers rated you 1.5 stars, why would Google want to put you on the front page? Instead, they want to show off the best businesses in the area. They do that by taking good reviews into consideration.

Adam Doppelt continues, “Yelp appears in the top five search results for 92% of Google web queries that consist of a city and business category”. The number of Yelp reviews for a business is positively correlated with rankings. What does that mean for you? Try to get your happiest customers to review your business on Yelp! Yelp is important, but it’s not the most important. Adam writes, “with the rise of Google My Business, Google has overtaken Yelp to become the most important directory for small businesses.”

Methodology of the Study

FreshChalk notes that the study is ongoing; however, they do share some important details about how they’re coming to their conclusions. Adam writes, “I collected roughly 300 data points for each website.” Adam also “ran 500 Google searches and looked for business websites in the top 100 results”. Given the comprehensive nature of this study, it’s clear that Adam’s report should be read and acted upon for improved Local SEO results.

Featured photo by Gerd Altmann on Pixabay