With customization of the search results being so prominent these days, it’s difficult to really know where your website is ranking. Based on the actual location of the searcher, the search results will be different. Sometimes you’ll see a map in the search results, and for some search queries you won’t see a map. This can be very frustrating if you’re trying to check search engine rankings.
There is a new Google Chrome extension, however, that allows you to fake your location so you can check the Google search engine results. The Google Chrome extension is called “Manual Geolocation” and is available here. You’ll need to go to that link via the Google Chrome web browser. Add the extension, and you’ll have an option in your toolbar to toggle it on and off.
Once you install the Manual Geolocation extension, you can either enter the Longitude and Latitude of the location or you can simply move the marker on the map to the location. I recommend that you then go to the Google search results page and scroll to the bottom of the page. There, you’ll be able to update your location.
For the best results, I also recommend logging out of your Google Account and then updating the location.
When I performed one particular keyword search, for my own site, I noticed that I show up in Google Maps in the search result if I’m within 15 miles or so from my Google My Business listing location. However, if I’m outside that 15 mile radius, there is no map in the search result and I don’t show up at all. This is especially frustrating in Texas, where cities and towns are sometimes more than 15 miles apart. We typically drive from one town to another just to go to one particular business because that service or product isn’t available in our town. So, searching for a service would be ridiculous because from one town to another it might not be offered. But the closest business is just 16-8 miles away. So, if we actually knew the closest service to us was in another town, we’d go there for that service. Here in Texas we are used to driving great distances if we’re not in a major city like Dallas, Austin, or Houston.