The basic conclusions of the study are that: (1) organic ranking factors (e.g., links, keywords, anchor text, etc.) boost local visibility; and (2) reviews are critical. The study argues that “local and organic search algorithms are still highly interconnected.” It adds that while Google is trying to include unique variables in the local algorithm, “traditional organic SEO tactics” are effective to rank locally.
Easy win for local small businesses. Add a little “nudge” on invoices, email communications, and in-store signage reminding customers to leave a review.
Before that, of course, you gotta make sure you’re set up on Google My Business.