How To Optimize Your Service Area

Let's say you operate a business which has a service area, such as a mobile dog groomer or a home inspector.  If you would rather not have your home address show on Google Places, you may denote a service area, so that your customers can see the areas you serve.

Any business that travels to its customers can denote a service area.  This would include examples such as our dog groomer, or home inspector.  It would also include a restaurant that offers delivery service, in addition to eating at the restaurant itself.

Why To Set Your Service Area

A very important reason to set your service area is if you are on the outskirts of a major city with a physical address that is not in the city.  By denoting your service area and including the major city, you stand a better chance of ranking for searches made within the major city.

For example, if you are a home inspector in East Aurora, New York, and you want to show up in searches for the larger nearby cities of Buffalo, West Seneca, and Cheektowaga, you would definitely want to denote a service area.  If you do not denote a service area and instead, just list your home address in East Aurora, you may rank well in East Aurora, but you will not be found in the larger cities where you do most of your business.

All businesses must submit their physical address, however.  After you submit the service areas for your business, you can hide your physical address.
In order to edit your service area, go into your Google Places listing and find "Service Areas and Location Settings".  By default, the listing says, "No, all customers come to the business location."  Tick the button next to "Yes, this business serves customers at their locations.

From the image below, you can see that when you tick the "Yes" box, you are then able to set your service area.

There are two choices for setting your service area:

Distance from one location.
Choose this option if you want to create a circular radius around your home office.

List of areas served.
Choose this option if you want to list certain cities, towns, or specific zip codes that you serve.
You have to choose one or the other, not both.

You will notice that the light red circle will change and highlight whatever service areas you choose.  Also, note that you can correct your physical address by clicking on "Fix incorrect marker location" (in photo above, lower right) and dragging it to your actual address.  I do not recommend doing this unless you are absolutely certain that Google has misplaced the location of your business.

You can also choose to "Do Not Show my business address on my maps listing" by ticking the box.  For a business trying to rank in a wider service area, I recommend hiding your home/physical address.

You have a lot of choices in editing and optimizing your Google Places listing.  It is all reviewed here for you; however, if you would like to hire a marketing professional to do it for you, I would love to help you.

Here at you can find everything you need to get started ranking in Google Places.  You may call or email with your questions, or if you want to hire me, I would love to do the work for you, so you can focus on your business!