If you’re a small business owner, you know how important it is to have an online presence. A Google My Business account, (now called a Google Business Profile or GBP) is one of the best tools in your SEO and digital marketing toolkits.
This is a free service that allows businesses to manage their online presence across various Google platforms, and bolster their organic search results. Google insights are full of useful information, and scoring a local business listing can put you at the top of your game. Lets check out some of the fantastic benefits of a google business listing and discuss some tips, tricks and best practices for optimizing your profile and getting better data.
What is a Google Business Profile?
A Google Business Profile is a free tool allowing businesses to showcase their contact details, hours of operation, and customer reviews. By keeping the profile updated regularly, small businesses can improve their search engine rankings and attract new customers. Meanwhile, engaging with potential customers through Google Maps and other services can help increase visibility in local search results, leading to more website traffic within your service area- where it matters most.
A complete and accurate profile can:
- Increase online visibility, particularly in google maps and direct search
- Provide vital business info like location and hours, popular times and more
- Publicly answer questions from customers
- Allow you to answer direction requests for information to help customers find you
- Easily see your total views and number of clicks per customer right in Google Analytics
- Encourage customer engagement
- Delivers real time insights into customer behavior
- Showcase your products, services and available options
- Gain credibility with customer reviews,
- Boost local search rankings on Google
- Increase visibility with Google Maps
- Integrate seamlessly with Google Ads
- Increase traffic to your other social platforms
With a complete Google Business Profile, customers are 2.7 times more likely to consider your business reputable. It’s an essential tool for any small business looking to boost its online presence and attract new customers.
Engage with Potential Customers and Book Appointments
There are so many more benefits to a google my business listing than just customer reviews. Having a GBP will give you some great customer service tools, like up-to-the-minute updates on your hours of operation, the ability to answer questions easily and publicly, a designated place for promotions and special offers, and more.
Equally importantly, Google provides users an easy ways to make appointment bookings right from your business profile, allowing a customer to move from being a random searcher scrolling through listings to a satisfied paying customer.
By following these simple steps and regularly updating your profile with new content, such as photos and offers, you can keep potential customers informed and interested in your business.
Showcase Products, Gain Credibility with Reviews
When it comes to showcasing your products and services, a Google Business Profile can be a game-changer for small businesses. While a great logo and cover photo go a long way, the ability to upload business photos, add product and service descriptions and highlight features and benefits can provide potential customers with an in-depth look at what your business has to offer. You can now even accept food orders through google!
Plus, the reviews left by satisfied customers can further build trust and credibility for your brand. Positive customer reviews help your small business gain credibility and attract new customers.
With a Google Business Profile, customers can easily leave reviews about their user experience with your business. The data shows that responding to negative customer reviews as well as positive ones builds trust, and when customers do leave you glowing reviews, you have the ability to spotlight them. Remember, the better maintained your profile is, the more new and existing customers it will drive to your business. Don’t discount the power of human connection.
My Metrics: Access to Insights and Analytics
Small business owners who are looking to gain a deeper understanding of their audience would find Google Business Profile’s access to insights and analytics incredibly valuable. With analytics, businesses can learn how customers are finding and interacting with their profile on Google. Insights provide data such as the number of views, website clicks, and calls, while analytics offer information on customer behavior, such as popular search terms and geographic location to prioritize local seo. Armed with this knowledge, businesses can optimize their profile and improve their online presence – a critical factor in attracting new customers and building brand awareness.
Boost Local Search Ranking on Google
Appearing higher in local search results on Google can be a game-changer for small businesses. By optimizing your Google Business Profile with accurate information and regular updates, you increase the chances of your business appearing in the “Local Pack” on Google search and Maps. The local pack or “3 pack” by default displays the top 3 local businesses for your search- directly above traditional text-only or links-based search results; making it one of the most valuable pieces of online real estate across the platform.
Not only does a strong Google Business Profile allow customers to easily find important info such as business hours, location, and reviews, but positive reviews can further boost your local search ranking and attract new customers.
Increase Visibility with Google Maps
Being easily discoverable online is crucial for small businesses, and having a Google Business Profile listing can significantly improve your odds of being found.
As a businesses appearing on Google Maps, you’ll help potential customers easily find your location and access other important information such as hours of operation and contact details. This increased visibility can lead to more sales, especially for local businesses who depend on foot traffic.
A strong presence on Google Maps through a well-optimized Google Business Profile is an essential tool for small businesses looking to attract new customers and grow their brand awareness.
Integrate with Google Ads
Integrating your Google Business Profile with Google Ads can be a game-changer for your small business. Using data already available from your profile, you’ll easily craft highly targeted ad campaigns that draw traffic and increase conversion. Harnessing this powerful combination, you can reach customers searching for businesses similar to yours in their local area.
By integrating these technologies, you can develop a full spectrum advertising strategy that optimizes online visibility while yielding clear results for your business.
Best Practices for Optimizing Your Google Business Profile
When it comes to optimizing your Google Business Profile, there are a few best practices to keep in mind.
- First and foremost, make sure your business information is correct and up-to-date. This includes your address, phone number, hours of operation and any other pertinent details. This will prevent any delays during your business profile verification process.
- Once you have an existing profile that’s up to date, the next step is using high-quality images to showcase your business and stand out from the competition.
- Encouraging customers to leave reviews on your profile can also boost your search rankings and build credibility with potential customers.
- Join the Google Business Profile hep community for tips, tricks and best practices
- Finally, consistent google my business posts keeps your audience engaged and informed of what’s going on with your business.
By following these best practices, you can maximize the benefits of having a Google Business Profile and increase visibility for your small business.
Choose the Right Business Category
Selecting the right business category on your Google Business Profile ensures that it appears in relevant searches, increasing visibility to potential clients and ultimately drawing them in as customers. Doing this properly is vital to winning over new clients. With an extensive range of categories to choose from, it’s essential to select one that accurately reflects your business type and services.
Although it might be tempting to place yourself into an overarching high level category that appeals to a broader customer base, opting for more precise categories will allow your business to distinguish itself from competitors and improve local search rankings.
Reviewing and refining your business category as needed for best accuracy can keep your profile up to date and ensure its relevance for users searching for businesses like yours; By making this simple but important choice, you can take a step towards optimizing your online presence and reaping the benefits of Google My Business.
Cross Post with Social Media
Do you post photos of your business and products on Facebook or Instagram? How about a Youtube channel with footage related to your business?
Take any media you’ve posted elsewhere on the internet, and upload it to your business profile. There’s no shame in having content on multiple apps or platforms, and using it to create google posts is a great way to centralize your content.
Make the most of Google Business Insights
Google My Business Insights is a valuable tool for businesses looking to improve their online presence. By regularly reviewing the data on how customers interact with your business listing, you can gain insights into what is working well and where there is room for improvement. With this information, you can make adjustments to your strategy to maximize visibility and engagement.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is Google My Business totally free?
Yes, Google My Business is completely free to use. You can create and manage your business profile on Google without any charges and take advantage of plenty of features such as business information management, customer reviews, and insights for free.
There are paid advertising options available within the platform that add features and/or give deeper insight than what’s available for free, but whether you choose to upgrade or not, the basic features to promote your business online work fabulously and won’t cost you anything.
How do I set up a GBP?
To set up a business profile, go to the Google Business website sign in with your Google account.
- Click the “Create a Business Profile” button and set up/enter your business info.
- Next is verifying that you are who you say you are. You’ll need to verify your business by mail, phone, or email, and depending on which verification type(s) are open to you, this can take anywhere from a few minutes to around a week.
- Once youre verified, you can add everything that makes your business what it is, from hours of operation to photos and products, services and promotions
Can I get an account if I don’t have a website?
You very much can absolutely create a Google Business Profile without having a website. All you’ll need to provide is some basic information like your business name, address, phone number, and working hours on the profile. You can always update your profile with more details once you have a website.
(Have we mentioned, btw, that having a website is one of the best ways to get your name out there to customers? If you’re looking for some help or encouragement getting started, let us know!)