The all-knowing, all-encompassing behemoth we know as Google informed its users via this blog post (an unusual move, as Google tends to play its cards close to the vest) of 40, count ’em, 40 changes to various areas of its search algorithm. At least one of these changes appears to profoundly affect people and businesses who lean heavily on local search optimization tactics:
Improvements to ranking for local search results. [launch codename “Venice”] This improvement improves the triggering of Local Universal results by relying more on the ranking of our main search results as a signal.
What this means, among other things, is that local businesses who don’t currently have a website need to get one. In the “old” days (seemingly mere minutes ago), a business who had enough reviews, citations, and well-optimized directory listings could get by without having a website. Now, it’s more imperative than ever for businesses to get one up and running…well optimized for the search engines, of course. Which also means your business needs to start blogging if it hasn’t already.
The good news is that this is easier than ever, and doesn’t need to cost an arm and a leg. A WordPress site is our favorite method of website building because it is A) incredibly easy to install, once you have a web host [we recommend Dreamhost, not Go Daddy]; B) it is easy to make updates to your blog and other pages as well as change the overall appearance [via a CMS, or Content Management System, i.e. WordPress]; C) There are many plug-ins available that perform necessary functions, like SEO, comment spam filtering, even mobile landing page construction; D) It’s incredibly affordable. If you use Local My Biz, we can put a WordPress site together for you for as low as $199 (the price goes up if we need to bring a graphic designer in). For customers who sign on for one of our SEO (search engine optimization) services, we will waive our site creation fee.