If you have a physically located business, you should undoubtedly have a Google My Business page for your company.
Google My Business is an important piece of local SEO. Your Google My Business page is where customers leave you Google reviews, and you can add various information, like your phone number, hours of operation, and address.
Let’s say you’ve already done a reasonable amount of SEO work, and your business is ranking pretty well when people search for “[your city] + [your service]”.
But what if your city is small? And you want to show up in search results when people in the larger city near you search for your service?
What if you’ve been using a UPS Store mailbox to have a presence in that large city down the road from you? But your rankings there have started to slip?
Perhaps you service an area surrounding your office, but you also see clients in that office?
If any of these apply, you’ll probably want to set a service area on your Google My Business page, instead of using the default address alone.
Note: You can no longer set your service area as a radius distance around your business. If you already entered a service radius, you won’t be able to change it using the old method. Instead, you’ll have to enter postcodes, cities, counties, or states in Google My Business.
Google gives instructions on how to do this, but this explanation may be easier to understand.
Here’s a step-by-step walk-through of how to set your service area on your Google My Business Page:
Setting Your Service Area on Google My Business
Step 1: Go to your Google My Business Account.
Step 2: On the left hand menu, go to Manage Locations. Find the Google My Business location you want to set the service area for.
Step 3: In the left-hand navigation, click Info. Click the pencil icon in the Service Areas section. These are locations where you provide services or deliveries. Add cities, counties, states, provinces, or countries where you provide services.
Step 4: Click Apply.
Your edits should be live within a few days, as long as Google doesn’t need to verify changes via a postcard sent to your physical address.
Can I Set My Service Area to a Wide Area, and Be Seen in the 3-Pack Map Across the Country?
I hear variations of this question a lot.
“If set our service area on Google My Business statewide, or countrywide, will people across the country see our business in the map at the top of Page One of Google when they search for our type of product?”
The quick answer is, “Probably not.”
That 3 pack map at the top of search results is primarily for local results. The map usually returns the closest businesses that fit the search query. In recent years, that local pack map has gotten even more hyper-local.
I know many businesses have wondered about that — if setting their service area to a super-wide area will mean they will get calls from across the country. Unfortunately, it’s not that easy.
Your best bet for coming up in a nationwide search is to focus on the organic results — the ten normal links that come after the map at the top of Page One.
To do that, you’ll have to concentrate on improving the quality of your website, creating more targeted content for customers at every stage of the marketing funnel, getting industry-specific links back to your website, and building a stellar reputation online.
Can You Set Multiple Service Areas In Google My Business?
Many people ask this because they want to come up in the 3-pack map when people search from different surrounding areas. While you can add different service areas (cities, counties, states) in GMB, that usually doesn’t affect the map.
The 3-pack map at the top of local search results most often goes by what is closest to you (if you searching a generic term like “HVAC contractor”). If you are searching for services in a city (such as “HVAC contractor in Duluth MN”), and that city is down the road from you, the map will show either results from near the center of the city, or whatever is near your location.
If you are looking to rank is cities that are farther away from your headquarters, you might want to explore having city-specific landing pages. If done correctly, these can rank for
city + service searches.