Hey everybody, Joe Burnich here with bigwestmarketing.com. In this short video, I want to show you how Google determines the city limits, which will also determine where you can rank and if you will get to rank within the city you are located. Let’s get started with that right now.
Okay, so I’m going to show you a quick little way to check your address and see if you even have a chance to rank in the city that you’re physically located. And that we’re talking about the map section of Google, like in the three pack, we’re not talking about Google organic, we’re just talking about the map section, the one that shows the reviews. So here we are google.com and what we want to do to check your address is go over to maps.google.com. You must be in maps.google.com, not just the normal Google.
Demonstration of Address Check
So what I’m going to do first is show you my address here in Missoula, Montana. This is my home address, not my business address. I’m going to type this in, copy and paste that in. And we’re going to search for that. Okay, so it puts a little marker where my address is. Now what you need to do here is zoom out. So you hit the little minus button down here. We’re going to zoom out until I see Missoula, the city name. Okay? And so I’m going to hover over that and that little city name turns blue. I’m going to click that and that will give me this little red outline and tell me what what are the city limits according to Google.
Google has their own City Limits
Now, the frustrating part about this whole thing is that Google city limits are different than the post office city limits. So you can still have a Missoula address and still have a really hard time ranking in your city. So for example, a while back if you guys saw me rank the power washing business in Missoula. So we go in here. And I used my address as the business address in the test. And so let’s just go back to google.com here and let’s do a search for pressure washing, Missoula, MT. Okay, so you’re going to say Missoula power washing right here. So that right there is based off my address. I ranked this business or this website up using my personal home address. I was setting it up for my cousin at the time who was starting a a power washing business. And I also use it as an example of exactly what I did step by step to get this ranked number one in the search engines.
And so one thing you can do though is click on this little map above and you’re going to see all the top ranking businesses here. Let me zoom out a little bit. And they’re going to have all of these little markers here. You’re going to see this one Arrow Power Vac, which is a Missoula address. So if you click on it, let’s see, see, it’s still a Missoula address, it will still say Missoula, Montana, but it will not rank in Missoula because it is located so far out of this little zone that Google creates for Missoula’s city limits. Okay? Now this is not fair. This is not fair the way Google does it and Google won’t tell you exactly how they determine these city limits, how they determine these boundaries. But since we’re trying to rank on Google’s platform, then we’re going to have to play by Google’s rules until they change. Which they change frequently. We have tried time and time again to rank people outside of their city limits but still had the city name according to the post office.
Example of Local Water Damage Company In Missoula
Let me show you another example here that I was playing with. A big one here in Missoula is water damage, big competitive search term, just like it is in most cities. Water damage, Missoula. Okay, so you’re going to see the top ranking businesses here and all of these are definitely within that tight little boundary that Google sets up. That’s kind of like the ranking boundary. One thing that I want to show you though is, let me click on this, is I know that Dayspring Restoration is by far the top company in Missoula. By far. I mean they do the best SEO. They actually have the best service. Multi truck operation and they’re doing SEO on the up and up. They have the most reviews in town, et cetera, et cetera. But they still do not rank in the top three. And it took me a while to figure out exactly why, but it has to do with this little boundary here.
Google’s Ranking Zone
So if I go back over to Missoula maps, or Google Maps, I’m sorry, and I copy in … I’m sorry. Let me grab the address for Dayspring. Notice it is a Missoula address, it says Missoula, but that doesn’t mean it fits into Google’s little zone, their little rankings zone. So I copied that and now I’m going to go back over to maps and I’m going to paste that in. Okay, now let’s zoom out again. Once again, I’m going to click on the the town name or the city name, Missoula, and you see that it falls right outside these boundaries here. So they do rank, they just don’t rank in the top three. I think they’re in the top five or six or top 10, depending on where they rank, but they’re still not going to be to get in and compete with all of these guys who don’t do SEO as well as they do. They don’t have all the same things that Google is looking for.
Now, if this company would move their address right over into inside this area, they would by far dominate. They would dominate because I just know their SEO. I know them personally and I know how much time and effort, money they’ve put into SEO, doing everything that Google wants. The only thing that’s stopping them is this little red boundary here. Okay? So the whole point of this is to show that just because you have a post office city name with your address there, it doesn’t mean you’re necessarily going to rank in that top three, in the three pack, which is very valuable. You can still rank organically, just not in the map pack or the three pack or whatever you want to call it. Okay?
Questions about Google Ranking
So if you have any questions with that, please give us a call. If you want us to do this for your, test this out for you, we’ll do it, no problem. If you want us to check on an address for you, no problem. Or you can just follow these instructions and do it yourself. But give us a call at (406) 493-1881. Once again, bigwestmarketing.com, (406) 493-1881. I’ll talk to you soon.