Take Advantage of Google My Business
Last Updated on November 13, 2020
Getting found by customers is one of the most important goals in business. Without people finding you, your odds are low for making money. This applies to businesses large and small. Your local Lowes store needs to be found by people in the area. Law firms, libraries, and laundromats must be found, too.
That’s where Google My Business (GMB) comes in. If someone googles the name of your business, what do they find? A website is not the only way to let people know you exist. It all starts with the first search results page. GMB exists to give customers all the basic information they need about your company without even having to go to the website.
While this may sound surprising, studies show that most customers don’t click beyond the first search results page on Google. Since search is the main way that customers find you, having a strong and effective GMB is critical to your business.
If you are looking for ways to boost your SEO and make your presence stronger on the web, it’s time to take advantage of Google My Business.
Claiming your GMB listing
First, you need to claim your GMB listing. This means that you verify you own the company and can provide all the details. Once you claim your listing, you can add multiple managers to the account.
Navigating the Dashboard
A GMB box shows where a company is located on the map, a picture of the company, what they do, their hours, a place for answering questions, and the phone number and website, all in a matter of seconds. You can edit all these pieces of information in the GMB dashboard under “Info.”
List what kinds of services your company provides, where you are located, your hours, and your phone number. Additionally, you can write a brief description of your company that is up to 750 characters. Make sure to write a description that is succinct, but also includes keywords and important information. Give your company a face by adding team photos, and make sure to frequently update them. The “cover photo” and the “logo” will appear at the top of the GMB box. You can even add videos under the photo section as well.
The GMB box, while simple, is very effective in quickly showing an audience exactly who you are.
Reviews are a great way to let customers speak for you. In the GMB dashboard, you have the ability to respond to the reviews left. Make sure to acknowledge reviews regardless if they are positive or negative.
Encourage clients to leave you a Google review. According to a BrightLocal study from 2017, 85% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. Reviews help with your SEO rankings in the eyes of Google, and searchers will see how many stars you get. The more high-quality reviews, the better.
On the GMB dashboard, there is an entire section designated for posts. Posts are one of the most beneficial features of GMB as they are an easy way to announce news or an event. From the dashboard, you can see who has viewed or clicked on the post, and add a sign-up button. You can also showcase a recent blog post.
With a GMB account, you can also get access to “Insights” which is a helpful overview of how your GMB is performing. This page shows the most popular search terms used to find your business, how customers searched for your business, where customers view your business on Google (either on search or maps), and the most common customer actions (phonecall, visiting the website, requesting directions, viewing photos, messaging, etc).
Under the dashboard, two additional features haven’t been mentioned yet: Services and Products. Depending on the kind of business you are, one of these two categories will apply to you. For the Products section, you can showcase several products you sell whereas, for the Services section, you can fill out a detailed list of the services you offer. Filling out one of these sections will be beneficial to the appearance of your company.
As a fair warning, Google users have more power over Google My Business than you may think. They can click on “suggest an edit” and actually edit parts of your GMB. Be wary of this, as some customers could potentially screw up your account without you knowing it. Be in the habit of regularly checking your GMB account to make sure everything looks okay.
Possibly the best advantage of GMB is that it helps local businesses find you online. When you make a search, Google often pulls local results first. Even if your company may have larger aspirations, make sure to focus on establishing a strong local presence. Great business opportunities could be in your backyard and you don’t even know it.
Take Advantage of Google My Business Today
GMB is a great way to let your presence be known on Google. It makes your company professional, relevant, and easily accessible. Plus, it’s a great way to connect locally. Take half an hour or so to fill out your GMB listing and watch as more customers find you.
Now that you’ve got Google My Business down, are you ready to tackle your website’s SEO? Read our blog post on 10 Ways to Improve Search Engine Ranking.