Google Local Search
The system allows for 1
instance each of Google Desktop, Google Local Finder, Google Maps
and Google Mobile
(up to the package capacity limit of search engines per campaign), and they can be customized for specific location. However, because there are business cases where it would be beneficial to track multiple instances of the same search engine with different location settings in the same campaign we offer this option for customization.
In this example we will focus on Google in the USA, however, this feature is available for Australia, Canada, the United Kingdom and a few more countries (if you need a different country, contact us to request that it be added). To track multiple instances of the same USA Google Local search engine (e.g., Desktop, Mobile, Local Finder or Maps) in one campaign:
- Select "United States (Local)" in the Country list.
- Select the search engine you want to add, e.g., Google Loc 1*, and repeat for the next instance of the same search engine by selecting Loc 2 and Loc 3, customizing each for the desired locations (Custom Location & Options > Custom Location Settings).
- Repeat for each Country & Search Engine combination that you would like to add, up to the limit per campaign for the package the campaign is associated with.
Naming Local Search Engines
When selecting a Google Local search engine, you have the option to customize the location and the label that displays in reports for that search engine. Click the Custom Location & Options
button. Note that the search engine name in this example is displaying next to the flag as Google Loc 1
. In the Custom Search Engine Name
field, you can enter the name that you want displayed for that search engine in reports.
In this example we have entered "Google Orlando" to identify the location of the Google Loc 1 search engine, and after clicking the Save button, the new label displays next to the Google logo and country flag.
Custom Search Engines Report
In this example there are 3 Google USA Local search engines - for Orlando, Tallahassee, and Tampa, Florida - displayed side-by-side in a Rank Summary Search Engines report in Competitive View.
The above example was created using Google USA Desktop search engine.
Google Mobile can be set with custom location and for business results.
Google Maps can be set with custom location and provides map results from the Google Maps search engine with places listings.
Google Local Finder is a feature of Google search and can be set with custom location and business results. It provides data from Google My Business listing results, along with maps.
This FAQ explains the differences between Google Local Finder and Maps.
Rank Tracking & Report Options
Click the Custom Location & Options
button and complete these fields:
- Custom Search Engine Name (optional): this displays in reports
- Custom Location Settings: the search engine country has already been selected, you can target the location further by entering a state, city or postal code in any of these formats:
- California: this narrows a USA search to the state of California
- Miami, FL: this narrows a USA search to the city of Miami, Florida
- 90210, USA: this narrows a USA search to a postal code within a city (in the US, it is necessary to add a comma after the postal code and include USA)
- London: this targets a UK search to the city of London
- WC1N: this targets a UK search to a specific postal code
Click the Save button
when you have finished customizing the search engine.
The default search engine setting for Business Results is that they are excluded from rank tracking.
- Option 1: Select Exclude from organic rank count if you don't want this campaign to report local pack or hotel pack in the Rank reports
- Option 2: Select Exclude from organic rank count AND enter the Google My Business page name in the Business Name field if you want the business name tracked and reported in the SEO > Rank Insights report - Local screen
- Option 3: Enter the Google My Business page name in the Business Name field, and select the Include in organic rank count option if you want the local pack or hotel pack position considered as part of organic rank in the Rank reports,
- Select the Include if Ranked option if you don't want the local pack or hotel pack included in organic rank when your business isn't found in the pack
If you choose Option 2 or 3 to enable Google My Business listing results reporting, then follow these instructions to enable tracking.
Business Results Match
Business with Multiple Location Listings
- Select Exclude from organic rank count or Include in organic rank count based on whether or not you want local or hotel pack positions counted in organic rank (as described in the section above)
- If Include in organic rank count is selected, and you only want the local pack or hotel pack positions considered in organic rank only when the Business Name is matched in the pack, check the Include if Ranked option.
- In the Business Name field enter the Google My Business listing Title
The Business Name must be the exact Title that displays in the Google listing for the business location.
Refer to sections below for wild card options to accommodate Google business listings for multiple locations or business names.
If the tracked domain has multiple Google business listings containing the same Business Name with location or service included in the title, use the (contains)
Company with Multiple Business Name Listings
- For example, by entering (Capital Grille), Ranger bot will return Local Results for "The Capital Grille", "Capital Grille Wall Street", "The Capital Grille of New Orleans", etc.
If the Google Business Titles don't contain a common brand name, you can enter multiple business names in parentheses with a pipe between them
Business Page URL (optional)
- For example, the Hilton Hotel in San Diego has a sports grill, lounge, and restaurant, so to track the Google Business page for each of the related properties, you could enter this in the Business Name field:
(Hilton San Diego Bayfront)|(Fox Sports Grill)|(Odysea Lounge)|(Vela)
If the Google business listing has been optimized for a URL that is different than the campaign primary URL, you may enter that URL in this field and we will use it as the landing page in your reports.
- For example, if the website link on the Google My Business listing for a restaurant directs users to the reservations page, or a menu, or gallery of mouth-watering photos, you can enter that URL in this field.
- If the field is left empty, then the campaign domain URL will display in reports if the keyword ranks in Local Finder for the business name.
In the above example, the search engine has been customized:
- For search in Boston, Massachusetts
- To include local pack and hotel pack results if the Google My Business listing title is "The Capital Grille"
- To include the rank count along with organic results rank if the Google Business listing name is in the search results
- To list a specific landing page URL in the rank reports when the Google My Business name is found in Boston based search results
Click the Save button
when you have finished customizing the search engine.
Learn more about Local Pack Results
or Hotel Pack Results
The display of video carousel in search results linking to the tracked domain or YouTube (or other video platforms) can be added to SEO tracking by using this search engine setting.
Search Engine Setting for Video Carousels
This setting is located in Campaign Settings > Search Engines
Confirm Video Channel Name
The name entered in the Video Carousel setting needs to match the channel name. For example, on YouTube allrecipes.com has a channel named "Allrecipes" (not "All Recipes"), so it needs to be entered that way in the Video Carousel setting.
Example of Video Carousel in Rank Insights Video view
In Reports > SEO > Rank Insights > Video view, if a video displayed in the search results and the URL matches the tracked domain or the channel matches the channel name in the search engine settings, then you can open the SERP Snapshot to discover the video title, URL and channel name (if the video link is at YouTube, Vimeo, etc.)
Example of Video Carousel reported in Rank Insights > SERP Features view
Include or Exclude Top Stories News Results
This feature is available for Google desktop search engines in the Custom Location & Options settings.
The default is set to exclude
News results in the rank count.
Top Stories results along with Organic results in rank count, select Include
When set to include and campaign keywords result in Top Stories in Google Search, a news icon
will be displayed in the Dashboard
report for that keyword. Learn more
about how rank is counted when this option is selected.
Apps Box & Top Stories
Google serves special features in Mobile SERP and so we offer several specialty features for mobile search tracking including the following options that you can choose from to customize the type of search results you want tracked:
- Apps Box
- Top Stories
You can further customize mobile search results with custom location and business results settings. Learn more...
These Optional Advanced Settings
are automatically set to display the optimum results for the selected search engine and campaign. Only change these settings if you specifically want to see results that vary from the default
For example, when google.co.uk is selected the default language is English. If you want to track a different language, such as French, in google.co.uk then you should change the Search Results Language setting.
Search Results Language (lr parameter)
If you want to check search rankings only for a specific language
(lr parameter), select it from the menu.
Important! Do not select a language unless it is non-native to the search engine you have selected
(e.g., if you selected google.co.fr and you want French search results, then leave this set for All Languages because French is the default for google.co.fr).
Search Results Country (cr parameter)
To check search rankings only for pages hosted in a specific country
(cr parameter), select the country from the menu.
If you have already selected a country-specific search engine like google.co.uk, and you want search results for the UK, then do not change this setting
because UK is already the default for that search engine.
Search Location (Country) (gl parameter)
To check rankings as though you were searching Google from inside a specific country
(gl parameter), select the country from the menu.
Important! Only select a Country if it is different than the search engine country
(e.g., search engine is Google.com USA and you want results based on someone searching from Canada).
Interface Language (hl parameter)
If the campaign contains multiple language keywords tracking on a country-based search engine, and you think that your client / target audience has their browser interface language set to a language that differs from some of the keywords, then you may select an interface language.
For example, if most of the campaign's keywords are French, and some are English, and the campaign is tracking on Google France (google.fr), then you may choose to set the browser interface language to French.
Select a SafeSearch filter based on the level of adult content you want to display in search results
- Off = adult content allowed
- Moderate = explicit content blocked
- Strict = adult content blocked
Click the Save
If you choose to delete a search engine, the deletion is permanent. Please understand that if you (or any authorized account user) click the Delete
button, then a warning message displays on the screen and that requires a second click to accept deletion, once that Delete button is clicked it is not possible for us to recover the data. We recommend that Campaign Rank Backup
be run and file downloaded prior to any deletion within a campaign's settings.