Google My Business – Cannect with your customers.
What is Google My Business?
GMB, as it is often referred to, was previously known as Google Local and Google Places. It is a free business Profile that helps you to drive customer engagement with local customers across Google Search and Maps. It is similar to other online directories such as Yelp.
It is also a CORE element of Local SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) Which is the process of growing the quality and quantity of website traffic by increasing the visibility of a website or a web page to users of a web search engine.
Having a GMB listing can help boost your numbers across the board. The Key difference between GMB business profiles and other directories is that your Google business listing can be incredibly detailed, and information from it can be output by Google into a variety of places with high online visibility. If you take the time to manage your business profile correctly, it can do wonders for your website traffic. Just by having a listing and showing up in local searches, Google has found that businesses are as much as 70% more likely to attract location visits from browsing potentials. Even better to hear is that customers who find a brand through their Google My Business listing are much more likely to make a purchase.
The Basics on how to list your Business on GMB
Step 1 GOOGLE ACCOUNT -You will need to have a Google account, if you do not, you will need to create one to continue. Make sure this account is the one you would like associated with your Business.
Step 2 GMB URL – Type https://www.google.com/business/ into your search engine and click on it.
Step 3 CLAIMING OR CREATING YOUR LISTING – In the search bar, enter the name of your business, If you can see YOUR business come up, click on it, please make sure you have chosen the correct one, if the name of your business does NOT come up, you will need to click ‘Add your business to Google’ and follow the prompts. Fill in as much information as you possibly can, and please make sure it is accurate and up to date.
Step 4 VERIFICATION – Verifying your listing – this can be done in varying ways, by Postcard, E-mail, Phone, or instant verification, pick the option that suits you best. Once you have received your verification password, you need to enter this into your GMB listing that you have created….and VOILA you are officially a GMB listed Company, Congratulations!!!
Step 5 LET THE FUN BEGIN; it is TIME to start optimising your GMB profile.
A bit of advice on optimising your GMB profile
- Complete every section of your GMB profile, be meticulous with contact information.
- Select the relevant category – the main service that you provide, if you pick the wrong one, it can have a hindrance on your local search.
- Write a complete business description – try and get your keywords in here, it needs to read naturally to clients
- Add photos and publish business posts WEEKLY
- Add your website URL
- Add business hours
- Create a GMB website and set up your messaging tool – go that extra mile
- REVIEWS REVIEWS REVIEWS, collect them and respond to them ALL, positive or negative, this is social proof for your website
How to make GMB Work for you
In order to make your profile work for you, continue to manage it regularly, and it NEEDS to be optimised, when properly optimised, it can showcase your best features and makes it easy for consumers to discover, learn about and contact your business. There is a lot of interactivity built right into your GMB profiles, these include Google posts which allow you to promote offers and services directly through Google Maps, you are also able to post photos and videos (similar to the likes of Facebook or Instagram and other online platforms.) so POST post post, get seen! There is a Google Q&A tab, which lets consumers ask you as well as each other questions about your business, it looks really good when a business can answer a consumers question directly, the more interactive your GMB profile is with all the right keywords, the better your visibility will be on local search, and probably the most important of the features is generating quality reviews, Accumulating and responding to them has been shown to significantly impact rankings and clickthrough rates, responding to ALL reviews whether they be good or bad, will not only help to build the customers trust, but it also gives you more visibility and gets you ranked higher on your local search. Consumer reviews are the lifeblood of businesses today 85% of consumers trust online reviews as much as they trust a recommendation from a friend…Just read that part again, did you not just have a complete A-HA moment right there!?)
GMB Insights – KYC, Know Your Customer/Consumer
Regardless of what kind of product or service you sell, the more you know about your customers, the better you will be able to appeal to them. From your Google My Business page, clicking on the insights tab will give you a wealth of valuable analytics that breaks down how visible your brand is, who your target customers are, and how they’re engaging with your business. This is a powerful tool that enables you to gauge how your business is performing throughout the year so you can learn what is working and what is not.
It is important to take note that Google is constantly changing and upgrading Google my Business, so it is vital to be constantly monitoring your page and to keep ahead of the game.
So THERE you have it, folks, it has never been easier to be in control of your business online presence and to tell customers your story, it is quite literally at your fingertips, so let’s get to it, there is no better time than the present.