How to Find a Pizza


We all have our own vices. Among mine is a love for oven-baked, flat, disc-shaped bread typically topped with a tomato sauce, cheese (usually mozzarella) and various toppings – pizza.

According to a 2006 report there were 69,386 Pizza Stores in the US. No wonder why it is so difficult figuring out which one to order from when I get the late night pizza “munchies.” In fact, pizza restaurants comprise nearly 8% of all restaurants in America. These statistics really got me thinking. With so many pizza restaurants around, how do they all differentiate themselves – especially on the Web?

I work in Plainsboro, NJ, a sleepy little town tucked away among the few remaining sprawling farms and fighting hard to preserve what is left of its original rural character. Only a few miles from Princeton University, Plainsboro’s national claim to fame, these days, Pizza near me is probably its unmistakable connection with the hit FOX television medical series, “House.” Plainsboro is the setting for Princeton-Plainsboro Medical Center in which Dr. Gregory “House” blends modern medicine with playful sarcasm. Fitting with the show’s sometimes “cart before the horse approach to medical treatment,” is that the town of Plainsboro is only – now – building what will soon be the real Princeton-Plainsboro Medical Center, just outside of its tiny downtown.

Finding the Best Pizza in Dr. House’s Town – Fact over Fiction

If you want a Pizza in Plainsboro, a Google search will provide you with more than thirty pages of pizzeria listings representing pizza parlors that are all nearby. The Google local Top Spot has been won by a strip center pizzeria conveniently located near the center of town. Ironically, on that first results page – that boasts this number one result – as its very first listing – you will find a partial customer’s review sharing that he “definitely would not label it the best in the area.”

Sort of an oxymoron, isn’t it? Not the best pizzeria in Plainsboro, but still holding the top Google position for a restaurant of its type in the local area. It’s really all about search-engine-optimization (SEO) and coming out on top. Obviously, someone associated with the local leader understands what needs to be done to successfully optimize their website and market its business on the Web. My hat goes off to them for accomplishing what is, for many, a very difficult task.

Let’s take a few steps backwards from the Number One local Google ranking. Their website is the chief destination for those searching Google for pizza restaurants in the Plainsboro area. My personal opinion of their website is that it is just OK. It gets the job done. Its design and navigation are really nothing much out of the ordinary. But, their webmaster has obviously done a terrific job creating a great list of Meta Tags and phrases that have caught the search engine’s eye. He or she also named each web page in such a way as to be indexed successfully by Google.

Plainsboro’s “Google Top Dog” pizzeria is in a tough region when it comes to great pizza. NJ.com recently proclaimed nearby Trenton, NJ the top town in the state for pizza lovers. In fact, there are three family- owned restaurants in Trenton that are almost universally acknowledged as the best in the south Jersey region, if not in all of the state of New Jersey. They are also all lucky enough to be indexed – very highly – by Google, geo-locally. The question for our purposes is; how much do good reviews really factor into one’s Google rankings?

While two locations of one of these pizza restaurants hold BOTH the Top Spot and the number two local Google search positions for pizzerias in Trenton, an unrelated pizzeria has been eclipsed by yet another mom and pop business for the number three search result on the first page of results. This other pizza restaurant has gotten some excellent reviews from its customers, but they have not garnered any superior ratings from the most of the state’s top restaurant reviewers. Obviously, this is yet another case where a business has made all of the right SEO moves to get themselves a top five local ranking, appearing on the first page of Google results.
By the way, the Trenton location for a national pizza restaurant chain, follows one of single location pizza parlors into the number five Google position on the first page for Plainsboro area pizzerias. It is most interesting and very refreshing to see that mom and pop businesses can often hold their own with the powerful national chains in search engine optimization.

 


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