I believe this is common knowledge in the local SEO world but I don't think I've seen Google come out and say it. Google's Rahul J from the Google My Business team posted in the Google My Business Help forum four ways to help promote your local listing in the Google search results. The fourth way, he said, was based on how many users clicked on the listing.
He wrote, "Search history: In the past how many times has the listing been clicked on by users searching with the keyword."
Here are all four he listed:
- Relevance: How relevant is your business category/listing to the search phrase used by the user?
- Prominence: Traffic to your business listing. How established is the business online.
- Distance: How close the business is location from where the search is being made.
- Search history: In the past how many times has the listing been clicked on by users searching with the keyword.
He then lists more methods including making sure your listing is in the right category, make sure you share your listing URL because it increases clicks on your profile, get good reviews from happy customers and share new updates and photos. He also linked to this FAQ with even more ranking tips.
But the top four are relevance, prominence, distance and search history/clicks!
Update: Google actually changed what they posted in the help forum, it now reads, "Search history: The number of times it has been useful historically on the basis of relevance, prominence and distance."