What Is Local Authority and What Does It Do for Local SEO?
Local Authority was built using similar principles as Domain Authority (the search engine ranking score that predicts how well a website will rank on SERPs) but scored for your local presence instead of national. Local Authority is a rating scale that assesses and predicts performance and ranking factor in local search results. A Local Authority score is an aggregate of factors: brand consistency, listing integrity, reputation, engagement, and influence. Local Authority pinpoints flaws in local marketing campaigns. This allows marketing agencies to develop strategies that boost google maps ranking, drive customers to brick and mortar locations, and improve customer engagement. Local Authority is also known as LA for short.
How Does Local Authority Work?
Local Authority scores range from 1 to 100 where 100 is the highest prediction of search engine ranking results. This score is determined by measuring 5 key areas of a Google My Business local listing. These key areas are:
Brand Health: Scores how often you provided relevant photos and posts over the last 90 days. Calculated as number of photos and posts created over the last 90 days on average.
Influence Health: This is a measure of the actual reach of your profile posts. Calculated as photo + posts views divided by total impressions.
Listing Health: This is determined by the consistency and accuracy of your Google My Business profile information. Calculated as total points minus deductions for missing, inconsistent, or inaccurate information.
Reputation Health: This score is derived from your overall popularity with your audience. Calculated as the frequency of a 4 or 5 star review rating weighted over the previous 12 months.
Engagement Health: This is a measure of your engagement and responsiveness to your consumer reviews. Calculated as total review responses divided by total reviews received, weighted for response lag.
Where to Test A Local Authority Score?
Local Authority has partnered with dba Platform which is a powerful SaaS designed to help agencies manage the Google My Business profiles of their multi-location businesses. Local Authority scores pinpoint the gaps tin the local digital profile, and dba Platform has the proprietary tools to fill those gaps. Best of all, checking your Local Authority score is free directly through the dba Platform portal.
How to Improve a Low Local Authority Score?
Perhaps the brand health of the location is suffering due to a mismanaged content calendar for the Google My Business profile. Using an automated service to schedule posts and photos to automatically post to the profile will guarantee there are no gaps in the content calendar.
If customer impressions are low use keywords in the meta-data and geotag your photos to make sure they reach the intended audience.
Ensure the location’s NAP information is consistent across all directories. This will improve the Listing Health score.
For locations with low reputation health, consider generating a review link that can be sent out to customers via SMS or email campaigns.
Getting five star-reviews is nice but Google values response to these reviews more than the actual rating. Timely response to reviews (especially the bad ones) shows that the profile is active and that there is a genuine attempt at customer engagement.
What Is The Difference Between Local Authority and Other Local Ranking Reports?
Other Local Ranking Reports have one major drawback; they are based solely on keywords. These reports do not take into account the post and photo views of your Google My Business listing. They ignore the buying actions of searchers who have found the listing. Local Authority tracks all of these metrics and more, giving agencies a more complete picture of your local presence for a location.
The Power of Local Authority Reports
Local Authority measures proximity, relevance and prominence, all of which are key metrics in Google’s algorithm for local search. The Local Authority report is useful in showing clients what aspects of their local marketing campaigns are failing and what can be done to increase local presence. The power of LA reports allows for the curation of your whole local search world making it easier than ever to attain optimal results.