How To Check Local Rankings And Dominate Local Search

by Wayne Barker March 23rd, 2012 

Checking where you rank in Google Places, Yahoo Local and Bing Local is important for any business that serves a local area or requires a local presence. Since Google started blending results (and the dreaded ongoing personalization of the SERPs) it has become more difficult to accurately work out where you rank month on month.

Although rankings should not be how you judge the success of a Local SEO campaign they are an important campaign barometer - and having some sort of ranking details are important. Although tools like Advance Web Ranking have the ability to track your local results their pricing can be a little bit high for a lot of businesses that require this kind of information.

This is where BrightLocal enter the fold. They have been around for well over a year now and provide the best (IMHO) online tool for checking your local search results. Not only does the tool do an awesome job at a very reasonable price there are lots of other goodies that can help you dominate you local search vertical.

So how can BrightLocal help your business?

Checking Local Rankings

There may be a day where rankings are not reported on, but for now they are still incredibly important for businesses and for SEOs to gauge visibility. The local rank checker put together by the guys at BrightLocal is by far the best tool that I have seen for tracking the progress of your Local SEO campaign. not only does it track your ranking in Google Places but in Yahoo and Bing as well:

Check your local rankings

You can run a single one off report or you can schedule a report to run each month for ongoing projects.

Not only do the results look pretty (!) but they are full of the kind of information that you need to make decisions moving forward with your campaign.

Checking the rankings for possible local SEO improvements

Check Your Local SEO Health

If you need to check on the current health of your Local SEO then BrightLocal can help out with this as well. For the cost of a few dollars you can run a Local SEO report that will look at a number of factors (on page and off) to determine the health of your Local SEO. The report gives you an overall summary and looks at:

  • Off Site SEO
  • Current Rankings
  • On Site SEO
  • Directory Listings
  • Business Address and Phone Number Consistency
  • Your Google Places and Competitors

As you can see below there is wealth of information that is pulled for you (that would take hours if not days in the real world) that will help you optimise both on site and off site factors. The details of the report are too extensive to go into here so I suggest you run one for yourself! Highlights include:

An easy to understand summary (with smiley faces):

Get a summary of your local sEO

Details of where your business is listed and whether you have optimised each of these listings:

See where you are listed for local SEO and whether it

Check your Google Places and how they stack up against your closest competitors:

Check the state of your Google Places and the competition

Help You Check Current Citations And Get New Ones

If that isn't enough BrightLocal have a citation tracker (if you are new to Local SEO a citation is a mention of your business and its details on a trusted third party site - more quality citations help you rank higher in Google Places). This tool will scour the Internet to find out which citations your business has and which ones you should get to help you rank higher in local search.

The citation tracker

The citation tracker is a great way to keep tabs on all your citations that you have worked on, are working on or are going to work on. All of it is presented beautifully and can be downloaded to CSV if that is your bag!

See your active citations:

Find out what local ciatations your business has

See what citations you need to be getting in order to give you a competitive advantage:

Getting ciations to aid your local seo campaign

If your business requires any kind of Local SEO then BrightLocal is becoming a one stop shop to help you dominate the local search results across the major search engines. The amount of time that it saves is huge - and that has to be a bonus for any busy business!

Key Local Search Resources:

Wayne Barker

I work for Boom Online - an Online Marketing and SEO company based in Nottingham, England.

Boom Online

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6 Responses to “How To Check Local Rankings And Dominate Local Search”

  1. Elena Anne says:

    Wow! That's a really cool tool. Definitely necessary in seeing where you are in the rankings. Knowing where you are really helps you to know where you need to go with your SEO. I like that it shows you your local ranking as well because that is a very important field for bloggers. Great job on the find!

    • Wayne Barker says:

      Hi Elena,

      Thanks for your kind comments. It really is a great tool and the best thing about it is the fact that it is affordable to small businesses who are doing their own SEO (its also great for aganices as well, though!).

      It can save you a heap of time and resource and that is important to any business!

  2. Darren Shaw says:

    I use BrightLocal because it's the only decent local rank tracker at the moment, but the rankings (in the US and Canada at least) are totally inaccurate. If I check what they report against what myself and my clients see in a fresh incognito browser, some of them are WAY off. Like differences of 20+ on lots of them.

    Makes it difficult to report to clients.

    • Wayne Barker says:

      Hey there Darren,

      I am in the UK and I haven't seen these kind of inaccuracies, in fact I have found them to be pretty spot on in most cases. I had a (quick) check around and couldn't find any documentation on this. I agree that if it is compiling inaccurate reults for the US and Canada it is a bit of a problem in reporting :(

  3. Greg says:

    Wow! I miss seeing the citations in a Google listing and this tool definitely fills that void and more. But at what price? I'm expecting this tool/service to cost about $100 per month right?

    • Wayne Barker says:

      Hi there Greg,

      Thanks for your comment! It actually costs less than you think – the single business rank checker package comes in under $10 a month and goes up from there to a maximum of $35.