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Using Google EAT to Influence Local Relevance Signals

Using Google EAT to Influence Local Relevance Signals

Last week we discussed the introduction of automatic updates to business hours on Google Business Profiles. This week we’re looking at Google’s growing local relevance signals, and why this makes Google EAT (expertise, authoritativeness and trustworthiness) more important than ever for a business’ Google Business Profile.

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Are You Applying Google EAT to Clients’ Google Business Profiles?

We’ve talked with you quite a bit about adding EAT to your clients’ Google Business Profiles – and for good reason.

As Damian Rollison points out, Google uses the elements within a Google Business Profile (GBP) – such as services, photos and so on – to determine relevance. Other items, like GBP posts, are shown to also influence relevance.

These justifications (as many call them) are also influenced by services and information on the business’ website. We originally spotted this in 2019, and discussed here how you can help your local business clients influence the local pack by adding EAT to their Google Business Profiles – yes, referred to as Google My Business back then.

Local Search Relevance and Justifications

You may have noticed examples of justifications in local search results as well. Essentially, justifications are snippets of text that indicate why the Google Business Profile is being featured for a particular search query. Here are just a few examples of the reasons Google uses to justify a listing:

  • Provides – Examples of relevant services listed on a GBP.
  • In stock – Up-to-date record of available products at a client’s store.
  • Posts – A relevant offer taken from recent Google posts.
  • Their website mentions – Services taken from a business’ website.
  • Menu highlight – A specific type of food, such as pasta or pizza.
  • Reviews – A review snippet taken from a GBP review.

As you can see, Google is helping searchers determine why they might be interested in a business. Plus, for us as local marketers, this clearly demonstrates the need for a comprehensive Google Business Profile. For example, imagine a business that didn’t list all their services on their GBP or website. If Google cannot be certain that a business offers a particular service, that business likely will not be featured for the more specific searches.

But Google’s push to expand local search doesn’t end there. As Damian also points out, local search is beginning to merge with Google Shopping to offer more comprehensive and consumer-focused SERPs (search engine results pages). Thanks to improvements in Google’s visual recognition technology, relevant searches are likely to feature product offerings besides the usual business data.

At Advice Local, we’re heavily in favor of adding a wide variety of images to a business’ Google Business Profile. This strategy can certainly pay off for action-taking businesses, as Google showcases relevant products for targeted searches.

If you see elements like Google posts, products and service details as being simply “optional extras,” it’s time to rethink this. It’s obvious that Google is offering an extensive local search experience that delivers more for consumers than ever before. And while Google is using AI to do much of the work, you can make things easier by creating up-to-date and complete Google Business Profiles for each of your clients.

Local Ranking Factors and Search Visibility

We’ve recently mentioned that several ranking factors influence local pack results. For a quick reminder, we’re talking about relevance, proximity and prominence. Ideally, a business should satisfy all three factors – be appropriate for the search query, located close to the target destination – and recognized as a high-quality business.

As you well know, local pack and map results are customized for each user. Since you can’t be certain which of the three factors mentioned above will win out, what do you do? The answer here is to make use of all available elements in a GBP, along with maintaining a business website, continuing to add fresh Google posts – and underpinning these factors with Google EAT.

Our Listing Management Tools Are the Answer

For an easy, efficient approach to helping local business clients stand out in search results, the Advice Local partner dashboard is the solution. Through the dashboard you can make use of local business listings, our Google Business Profile tools such as GBP Sync and the Google Authority Score, online visibility reports and much more. To get started, request a demo today by calling (214) 310-1356.