So much of how your business will appear in the Local Pack is determined by your website and its effectiveness. In this section, we will focus on Link Signals which accounts to 17% of your website’s overall effectiveness.
Link Signals are the signals that provide search engines with an idea as to how important your website is. For example, inbound anchor text are words that are highlighted and underlines on a website that point to another website, for example, I am going to link to another website now that will explain what Anchor Text is. Search engines actually like it when other websites link to other websites because it gives the search engine algorithm an idea that those linking websites might actually be important. Another example would be the following, a local restaurant links to a magazine where they have an article displayed Example once clicked, the user is redirected to another website, but the magic doesn’t stop there. The website that is being linked to has what’s called Domain Authority. Domain authority is another way of saying how powerful a website is by search engine ranking factors. For example, if a high school newspaper in Houston wants to cover a story about their local area they can write the most amazing article about people’s lives, etc. However, if CNN wrote a shorter article that wasn’t even that much in depth, CNN’s would rank higher in search engine results simply because of CNN’s domain authority. Any website with higher domain authority will most likely always outrank a lower ranked website simply due to the fact that search engines will presume that the site with higher authority will be trusted. As you can see here, CNN has an extremely high PA (page authority) and DA (domain authority).
If someone were searching for the term “Gossip” then Google is going to provide the searcher what it believes is the best choice to provide to the user simply based upon their search query. A search engines job is to provide accurate results for its users and in this case it gave me Wikipedia at #1, New York Daily News Celebrity Gossip as #2, and Perez Hilton for #3. Who would think that a celebrity gossiper like Perez Hilton could be so close to a large reputable newspaper? There are many factors, but in this case, it can be attributed to it be a very reputable website.
So what does that mean for your local business? You need to have other websites link to your website and it is extremely important that those websites have high Page Authority and Domain Authority. If your business can get mentioned in the local newspaper and if that paper has great PA and DA, then that will help your website get boosted in the search engine rankings. Obviously it is extremely difficult to get these other websites to link to yours, but in the end the more that link to your site will increase its rankings and eventually outperform your local competitors as well.