Reviews for GMB NATIONAL Rankings

DMG

Member
Joined
Sep 11, 2016
Messages
32
Would the content in my reviews (and responses) help rank my GMB on a national level?

I found myself putting in keywords like "dental SEO specialist" in my responses to Google reviews, without any thought of ranking for such keywords. As an afterthought, I'm wondering if such reviews might help me appear in the 3 pak for national-intent searches which display the 3 pak?

Anyone have anecdotal and/or empirical evidence showing more 3 pak traffic from this?
 

DMG

Member
Joined
Sep 11, 2016
Messages
32
Hey @DMG words in review responses do not impact rankings. The actual reviews themselves DO impact ranking. I'm not sure if anyone has done any testing around keywords in reviews impacting ranking but I would love to see test results when someone does.
Correct and thank you Colan. I suppose my question is more directed at national rankings, excluding local rankings.
 

JoshuaMackens

Local Search Expert
Joined
Sep 12, 2012
Messages
1,834
I doubt it would help in national rankings as national keywords will not trigger local SERP's where those keywords in reviews matter in ranking.

However, you could make the case that as entity search goes, those reviews are attached to your entity. So I guess theoretically they could help. They're not hurting, that's for sure.
 

MirageLimo

Member
Joined
Feb 4, 2015
Messages
14
Thanks everyone for asking and answering. This topic is of great interest to us over here.
 
Joined
May 3, 2018
Messages
65
Hey @DMG words in review responses do not impact rankings. The actual reviews themselves DO impact ranking. I'm not sure if anyone has done any testing around keywords in reviews impacting ranking but I would love to see test results when someone does.
@Colan Nielsen - This amazing bit of research by Mike Blumenthal shows that the words in a review kind of impact ranking. Are Words the New Links?

Specifically, he shows that the repeated use of a keyword in reviews makes a business start to show up in searches for that keyword. So, he shows that the business goes from not showing up (rank = N/A) to showing up (1 < rank < ∞).

Mike expanded on that research with this more recent post (Feb. 2019): How Google Uses Reviews To Understand A Business - GatherUp

In that article, he looks at the same topic but from a different perspective: he picks apart the Google patent rather than discovering Google behaviour through experimentation.

From the patent, we see that Google "...may determine a score, strength of association and/or other quantitative measure to be assigned to associations between descriptive segments of text and entities."

That is, Google quantifies a strength of association between text (in this case, reviews) and entities.

I know that's not what you or anyone else in this forum is really after, right? We want to see a study that shows review content improving a business's ranking from, say, position 5 to position 3. (Or, at least something a little more granular than not showing up vs. showing up.)

So, Mike's work shows us that review content can tell Google to associate a business with a certain keyword, making it relevant for queries that use that keyword. Keywords in the reviews can put a business into the results, but where in the results (i.e. ranking) is determined by other factors.

I would add to that one small idea: Google has all the tools in place to look at keywords in reviews, quantify their value in some meaningful way and use that as a ranking factor. They could do it. Of course, it probably wouldn't be very effective until they get review spam under control!
 

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