Whether your business is online, in a store or a mobile service – you will need a Google My Business (GMB) Listing. If you optmize your profile sufficiently, you can really stand out in local search results and attract potential customers searching for services on maps or via voice. Why bother? Well GMB listings carry a 5% conversion rate which is double the average website conversion!
In this post, we’ll explore how you can optimise your GMB listing to attract more customers and bring in more revenue.
1. What is Google My Business?
GMB is Google’s business directory. Not only does it display localised listings for users using Google Maps but it also feeds into many other online directories which all help towards SEO efforts.
Here is an example of our GMB listing which is viewable if you directly google “Ricochetb2b” or search for “digital marketing” when local to us. It allows us to provide a professional listing with Google’s search results with key information on how to get in touch and what we do.
GMB listings allow you to display information such as:
- Business Name
- Industry / Service Area
- Phone Number
- Hours of Operation
- Customer Reviews
2) How to set up your GMB Listing
- Head to Google My Business
- Click “Manage Now”
- Search for your business in the search box. Google sometimes automatically creates business listings based on crawl data. If you’re on there already, click and select “Manage Now” to claim your business. If you don’t appear on the list, click “ Create a Business with this name”
- Agree to the terms and conditions and complete/correct the fields requesting information
- After you create the listing, you will need to verify it. This is done by sending a postcard in the post so ensure you provide an address where you have access.
- When the postcard arrives, visit your GMB page again and enter the verification code. Once that’s done, you have full control of business profile.
3) How to Optimise your Google My Business Listing for Local SEO Success
Now you’ve set up your GMB listing, its time to optimise it to dominate search in the local area.
Being smart with category selection.
If you manage a salon where you offer a range of massages, you’ll drive the most relevant traffic by selecting “Massage therapist” as opposed to something more general like “massage spa” or “beauty salon”. There are thousands to choose from so play around until you find something that defines your business perfectly.
Secondary categories on the other hand are a bit of a free-for-all. You can have up to 10! Choose as many that are relevant – be careful as Google may suspend you if you choose any that are not relevant.
Include all relevant service areas
GMB allows you to list multiple service areas. If your business is located in East London but you also service Essex, Kent and North London, you should ensure those areas are included in your listing. Make sure you’re honest about the areas you serve – not only does that make a better user experience for paternal customers but failure to do so violates Google guidelines and may result in suspension.
Keywords are King
In your business description, it’s vital that you highlight the key products and services you offer. Think about how a potential customer would be searching for you and use the terms accordingly. For example, if you’re an aesthetic beautician, you’d want to include terms like “botox”, “anti-wrinkle injections” and “dermal fillers”.
Make sure all your business information is accurate
Google’s spiders will cross-reference your business listing with information found elsewhere (like your website). If your information doesn’t match up, you may be questioned on the accuracy of your listing. Even little things like putting Steynton Ave vs Steyton Avenue could trigger a red flag. Ensure your key information is all standardised wherever you display your business.
Google also prefers local phone numbers as an FYI.
Collect customer reviews
Now this is the game changer for GMB. Positive reviews from happy customers signal indicate value to Google (especially if they use Google reviews to express their views!) Whenever you do a good job, encourage happy customers to leave a review. Not only do reviews enhance your credibility, but they also work favorably with SEO.
Use decent imagery and update it regularly
Clear, hi-res, vibrant photos grab attention and make your business look professional. The more professional you look, the more clicks you gain which signals to Google that your listing is valuable. Include photos of your premises, your team, your stock etc and upload them in 720 x 720 jpg/png.
Regularly update photos to communicate to Google that you’re regularly uploading fresh content. This works favorably with SEO and there are always opportunities for fresh photos. Maybe you attended an event or have a new piece of work you can display. Use your imagination 🙂
Use the “Post” functionality
Google Business has a little bit of failed Google+ merged into it where you can update customers about latest news/offers/thoughts etc. You can simply click “Post” (+) to create an update. Don’t just paste content from other social platforms though – think about what the local market would find value from and use that.
If you have multiple locations, you need multiple listings
If your business has four locations in four towns, create a listing for each one. Each GMB listing needs to be optimised for the location it caters to.
4) Get the most from GMB
A well-optimised Google My Business listing is more likely to be found and create a positive impression.
In order to be successful, treat your listing like you would your website. Regular posts, photos and customer reviews are the key to winning the local battle.
For help to get started, drop us a line.