From Google Maps to Google Places and Google+, there’s a lot of Google these days. And now, to add to the complexities, there’s Google My Business. If you’re not familiar with GMB, it’s simply a free tool that helps your business manage their online presence across Google – and claiming your GMB profile is an essential part of local SEO.
Why Does GMB Matter?
If your website has been around for a while, Google likely already has your business contact information. However, if you don’t verify it via phone or postcard, then Google doesn’t give it the same relevancy as your competitor who did verify their GMB profile. That means the simple act of claiming and verifying your GMB profile can impact your local search engine rankings.
If your business is a major corporation with customers across the country, it’s not as relevant. However, if you’re a small to medium size local business in a small or mid-size market, it can be the difference between beating out your competitor down the road for a first place listing on Google…or losing out.
What’s more, according to a 2014 report by Google, 50% of consumers who search for a local business using a mobile device visited it within a day of the search; 34% who searched on a computer/tablet did the same. In addition, 18% of local searches lead to a purchase within one day.
Are you really willing to pass up those sales numbers?
So go to google.com/business and click “Get on Google” to claim and verify your GMB profile. Make sure your company information – including name, address and phone number – is all completely accurate. Also, be sure to include your operating hours, verify your website address, and select categories that best represent your company.
Beyond that, what else can you do to improve your Google My Business profile? Here are a few idea starters:
Include Photos On Your GMB Profile
Photos serve to enhance your profile, which search engines and users like to see. In fact, Google reports that those business listings with images in their profile get 35% more customers clicking through to their website compared to those listings without images. Just make sure the photos you do post are professional and represent your company well.
Fully Complete Your Profile
There’s more to a GMB profile than just your company contact information. Leverage its full potential by adding more detail to it. Write a short intro that describes your company to potential customers. Include a 360-degree video view of the inside of your business to further entice customers. And add regular updates to keep it fresh. You don’t have to post to it daily. However, when you add new content to your website or blog, for instance, you can share it on your Google My Business page – which enhances your GMB profile and builds quality backlinks to your website.
Encourage Customers to Write Reviews.
Reviews on your profile are like a word-of-mouth recommendation from a friend, making them invaluable. They can also help your website stand out on in the crowd on Google. So encourage and remind your customers to write reviews – and make it easy for them to do so. Link to your GMB profile on your website, social media profiles, and in email newsletters. The more positive reviews, the better!
Too busy running your business to manage your local SEO efforts? Call the search engine marketing experts at Qiigo at (888) 673-1212. Whether your business is large or small, we can help you fully leverage the power of Google My Business and dominate your local rankings.