The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) recently wrote an article about how large rival websites are being greatly affected by loss of rankings in search results due to Google’s own versions of these websites.  Many businesses, such as WebMD and TripAdvisor, are being adversely affected by Google supposedly ranking their versions of these websites ahead of them.

Google created Google Health in 2009 which, like WebMD, shows results for illnesses or medical related questions.  Google Places (formerly Google Local results pages) has been developed to compete with Yelp, TripAdvisor, and other local review websites.

Large companies are clearly seeing the value of Google rankings, and the impact of not having their websites rank.

What This Means For You

What this means for you is that anything related to your business and website must be properly registered and optimized for all Google products.  This doesn’t mean you should ignore your Yelp reviews, it means you need to make sure to keep your listings current and consistent as a major factor in your local SEO and/or national Internet marketing campaign.  For Local SEO, we offer monthly Local Business Listing (LBL) Management services.  Prices start at $19.95 for monthly management of your Google, Yahoo, and Bing Local business listings and review management.  With our monthly services, clients are notified when different actions on behalf of LBL owners are recommended, such as soliciting more online reviews from your customers.  This levels the playing field for local businesses to compete with their large corporate counterparts in their local markets.

While these huge businesses fight it out with Google, you should take this opportunity to optimize your website AND your local listings to make sure Google knows enough about your business to put it in front of potential customers.