Google My Business is a fairly new feature on Google. When you create a Google My Business Account, users will see a listing for your business when they search for it, or for your services, on Google. The listing appears on the right side of the page on users’ desktops and at the top of the page on mobile devices. In both cases, your business is featured prominently in Google’s search results pages, along with important information about your business. We've compiled a list of tips to help you properly optimize your GMB listing.
Complete All of the Information
One of the most important things you can do for your Google My Business listing is to make sure you complete all of the information that Google requests. The more information included on your listing, the better. When you include all of the basic information for your business, your company will be easier to find. Additionally, users can find out information about your business without leaving Google. They will be more likely to visit your site if your listing shows them that your company fits their needs.
Check Your Dashboard Regularly
It’s a good idea to check your Google My Business dashboard regularly to remain active on your account. However, it’s especially important to check on your edits. On each section of your Google My Business listing, there is a button labeled “suggest an edit.” This button allows users to edit the listing’s information. This feature can be helpful when Google autofills information, as users can help make the listing more accurate. However, if you’ve filled in the listing with accurate information, users can change the information to be less accurate. For this reason, it’s important to regularly review these edits to quickly change any false information.
Within your Google My Business listing, you have the opportunity to add visuals. Visuals are more powerful than text on the Internet, especially on a Google search results page, where the whole page is text. Including visuals will help grab users’ attention. Not only can you add your logo and a few shots of your business, but you can include interior shots of your building and even a video, up to 30 seconds, about your company. Because video is rising in importance on the Internet, it’s a good idea to take advantage of this opportunity. When you include visuals in your GMB listing, your listing will grab more users’ attention and create a better impact.
Add to the “Posts” Section
Towards the bottom of your GMB listing, you can feature posts, which are like mini ads. You can create special posts for events hosted by your business. You can also feature blog posts or social media posts. Users will see these posts within your listing, and they can even scroll through multiple posts. When possible, you should include information in the “posts” section. In addition to creating a more complete listing, including posts is a great way to choose the most important information about your business that you want to be sure users can see right away. The posts section provides an opportunity to add personality to your Google My Business Listing.
Include Services or Menus
If applicable to your business, be sure to list all services your company offers or any menus for restaurants. The more information you provide in your GMB listing, the better. If users can easily see whether your business suits their needs, potential customers will be more likely to visit your site and use your company. When you include this information, users can find it out quickly, rather than hunting around your site. The easier it is for users to find if you offer what they need, the more likely you are to gain their business.
Use the Booking Button
If your business involves booking appointments, the booking feature of Google My Business can be very useful. If you’re using integrated scheduling software, you can use the booking button to allow users to book appointments at your business directly through your GMB listing. This feature eliminates the need for users to hunt around your website to try to book an appointment. In fact, they will be more likely to book an appointment because it’s so easy. The booking button is a great way to simplify the booking process for your customers and to book more appointments.
Turn on Messaging
If you turn on the feature, users have the ability to message your business directly from your Google My Business listing. You can enter your mobile number and users can send you a text that will go directly to your phone, allowing you to quickly message them back. If you don’t want to use your personal number and don’t have a designated business mobile phone, you can download Google’s Allo app. With the app, messages from users will go directly to the app, allowing you to separate out business text messages and eliminating the need for users to have your personal number.
Users can ask any questions they might have about your business, whether it’s about your services, location, or something more specific to their needs. You will have the ability to quickly answer users’ questions in real time, improving your customer service and sales. When potential customers can have their questions answered quickly and easily, they’ll be more likely to use your company.
Utilize GMB Reviews
Customers can leave reviews of your business on Google. It’s important to use this reviewing feature to your advantage. Google has strict guidelines to ethically ask customers for reviews. However, if you follow the guidelines, having as many reviews as possible from your customers is good for your business. The more positive reviews you have, the more reliable your business looks. Additionally, Google will rank high-rated businesses higher on their search results.
You should also be sure to respond to all reviews. Thank positive reviewers and let them know that you hope to see them back. Always apologize to negative reviewers and use the opportunity to explain any issues. Negative reviews always look better when the company addresses them, because it shows customers and potential customers that you care.
Create a Quality Business Description
When you create your Google My Business listing, you have the opportunity to write a description, up to 750 characters. You should use this opportunity to accurately and enticingly describe your business. Google has guidelines about what information can go in this description, though. Essentially, you cannot include any misleading or inappropriate information. You are also not allowed to include links However, as long as you follow Google’s guidelines, you can use this opportunity to tell users the most important information that you want them to know about your business, in hopes of driving more traffic to your site.
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