10 Ways to Super-Charge Your Google My Business Listing
You are a business owner or a professional who has worked hard to get where you are now. You got a small or medium-sized service business that you are proud of with an amazing online presence (if you do not have an amazing online presence, we can help). You have also recognized the importance of Local SEO and claiming or creating your Google My Business (GMB) listing already. If you have not claimed or created a Google My Business listing for your business, read on. This article is dedicated to helping you get more exposure on Google by creating and optimizing, or super-charging, your Google My Business listing.
Here are our 10 ways to super-charge your business with Google My Business
- Claim/Create and Verify
If you do not have ownership of a Google My Business listing for your business, simply go to this link https://business.google.com/create . Here you will have the option to search, claim or create a listing for your business. If your business shows up, make sure to select it and claim it. If it does not, then create it by “Adding your business to Google.” Simply follow the prompts until you arrive at the Verification step. Make sure to include as much information about your business as possible. Verification is likely to happen by mail with Google sending your location a postcard with a GMB code to enter on their website once you receive it. However, there is a chance your business can qualify for email, or phone verification. If so, do verify your business by phone or email as it will start appearing in Google Search and Maps right after.
- Pick a Primary Business Category
The primary category for your business is the most important one as Google My Business gives it top priority in its algorithm. The more specific you are on your primary category, the more effective your overall listing will be and you will be competing against fewer businesses.
- Pick Secondary Business Categories (if relevant)
Many a time a business will fit into different categories. For example, a medical aesthetics business can use Medical Spa as its primary category and Skincare as a secondary category. If this is your case, then make sure to select as few secondary categories as possible when describing your business. This will make the Google My Business algorithm more efficient in showing your listing for the most relevant categories.
- Add Images
You have heard the expression “a picture is worth a thousand words” right? Well, it is extremely important to add images of your business to your Google My Business listing. Pretend you are giving your potential customers a visual tour of your company. The first thing you should add is a logo in the correct format so that it does not get cut off by Google. Then, include images of the outside and inside your building, your reception desk, photos of your staff, treatment or conference rooms, the devices, or technologies you use, products or services you offer, etc. The more pictures, the better as you will be telling a story about your business enticing them to contact you instead of the competition. Make sure the images are clear and in high resolution to help represent your business properly.
- Name, Address, Phone Number, Business Description, Website & Appointments Links
Make sure your contact information is accurate by including your full business name, address with zip or postal code, state/province, city, and phone number with area code. If your contact information is listed elsewhere (as it should) make sure it is consistent so potential customers can reach you easily. When writing your business description, take advantage of all the 750 characters that Google gives you and provide your potential customers with enough information about what you do, sell, or offer. Make sure to include keywords related to your offering within your business description as this will help the algorithm decide whether to show your listing for a particular search or not. Finally, provide your website address and an appointment link if you are a service business or a professional. The appointment link shows up right on the search results pages and makes it easy for potential customers to contact you.
- Stay on Top of Reviews
One of the key features of Google My Business listings is the ability for users to leave reviews. The more reviews a business has, the more it gets prioritized by Google in local searches. Also, most of your potential customers will read the reviews before deciding whether to do business with you or not. This is the reason why it is extremely important to stay on top of your reviews, both positive and negative ones. While you should certainly respond to your negative reviews publicly, make sure to also respond to positive reviews you receive. This best practice will leave a lasting impression on potential customers. Also, it will send a signal to the Google My Business algorithm saying that you are active on the platform which will turn into better rankings and prioritization of your business over others that do not respond.
- Post Offers, News, Events, Product or Service Updates
Another feature of Google My Business provides business owners with the ability to create posts. There are many types of posts available on Google My Business. You can post a Covid-19 update, an offer, a product or service update, promote an event, or add new products and services. The more you post, the better for rankings, and Google will send you statistics as to how your posts are doing from an engagement perspective. Hey, if you are posting on Facebook and Instagram already, why not use that same content for your Google My Business listing as well? The benefits can be multiplied, and you will tackle your potential customers from different angles. Keep in mind that your Google My Business listing posts will expire so make this a habit to post something at least every 7 days.
Another great feature of Google My Business listings is Messaging. With this feature, you can respond to customers who message you right on Google. This will show customers who discover your business on Google how quickly you respond. Responding to all customers will help build trust and may encourage more customers to contact you. But be careful as business who fail to respond to customers within 24 hours may have messaging turned off. Google is very strict about this. Read the policy here: https://support.google.com/business?p=messaging_policy.
- Get More Reviews
As mentioned previously in this post, reviews are particularly important both for the Google My Business algorithm and for potential customers. Google My Business makes it easy for you to get more reviews by providing you with a Share Review Form that can be added to your website, shared on Facebook, WhatsApp, Twitter, Email, you name it. Insert this review link across all your marketing materials and do not be afraid to ask your customers to leave a review on Google. By using this feature, you will be making it easy for your customers to leave you a review and will be growing your review count quickly.
- Keep Your Google My Business Listing Dynamic
As you have seen on this post, super-charging your Google My Business listing takes a bit of work. This is not a set-it-and-forget it tactic. It is an ongoing local search marketing strategy that requires constant work. Make sure to keep the information updated, publish new posts and images as often as possible, request and respond to reviews promptly, and stay up to date with new features. The more time you spend on this, the greater the benefit to your business. How will you know this is working? Google will automatically send you updates as to how your GMB listing is doing. Stay on top of those, analyze what worked, rinse, and repeat.
That is all folks. I hope these 10 ways to super-charge your GMB listing will help you gain more exposure on Google and ultimately grow your business. Performance Media Agency is a digital marketing consultancy that helps small businesses and professionals grow with performance-driven digital marketing. Feel free to Contact Us, ask a question, or request information on our Local Search services. We are friendly, approachable, and here to help, always.