More threads by dave101

Feb 1, 2018
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Has anyone seen a client/friend's company outrank other businesses in nearby cities in Google Maps where competition is putting 0 effort in SEO & GMB "OR" does Proximity now matter in regards to ranking in maps?
I believe proximity is the #1 factor in local/maps rankings. So, yeah, a competitor who does zero SEO can outrank you if they are a lot closer to the center of the city searched or closer to a person who does a "near me" search.
Yes, we see it often. Over the last few years and most especially since November/December 2021, Google has significantly increased the importance of proximity to the searcher. This was reported by many users on this forum and researched significantly by @JoyHawkins and her team and coined the "Vicinity Update" The Vicinity Update: What You Need to Know About Google's Largest Local Algorithm Update in 5 Years - Sterling Sky Inc.

Also many factors for Local Pack ranking are different than Organic ranking. We've seen GBP's rank in the Local Pack that have no website. However, those same businesses will typically not rank well organically if there are competitors that have websites and are decently optimized. We've also seen anecdotally that the number of years in business can have an impact on Local Pack ranking. If you want to read more about Local Pack ranking factors versus Organic Ranking factors, this is a great article: Local SEO Ranking Factors: What Affects Local Rankings?

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