Consumers want your business information at their fingertips (quick and accessible). That’s why keeping Google My Business (GMB) up-to-date and optimized is an essential service for business owners. Setting up your profile is easy so why hire someone else to manage your listing? Because your business listing the first thing potential customers see on the Google Search Engine when they type in your company name. Continually adding content to it, tracking the performance of your listing and monitoring reviews can be time-consuming. Do you have time to keep on top of managing your profile?
What are you waiting for? Learn how to set-up and optimize your Google My Business (GMB) listing today!
Why Optimize Your Google My Business Listing?
The answer is to help Google understand more about your business and who you are. Google My Business is a free and simple tool that manage your business’s online presence. It allows business owners to target their audience on searches when consumers are searching for a product or service near them. And when used correctly, this tool can not only generate traffic and sales but get your business on Google’s first page. That’s why GMB is going to have to be a crucial part of your business to receive exposure and grow on Google Search Engine.
How to Set-up a Basic Google My Business Listing?
Creating a listing is very easy. There are 5 main steps to getting verified so your business shows up when someone searches for your business name in Google.
Step 1: Go to google.com/business and click on “Start now”.
Step 2: Select or create the Google account you want to use.
Step 3: Enter your business name and address.
Step 4: Choose a category for your business. Be very specific.
Step 5: Verify your business.
Ways to verify your GMB listing: Phone verification
Select “Verify by phone” and type in the code from the text you receive.
- Email verification:
Select “Verify by email” and open the mail you receive in your inbox and click on the verification button.
- Postcard verification:
Select “Postcard by mail” and fill out your contact name. Click “Mail”. Your verification code will take at least 5 days. Meanwhile, do not edit your business name, category and address or request a new code before your code arrives because this will delay the verification process. Once your postcard arrives, enter in the five-digit verification code on your postcard and click “Submit”.
- Instant verification:
Sign in to Google My Business with the same account you used to verify your business with Google Search Console.
- Bulk verification:
If you manage 10 or more locations for the same business, you are able to verify them all with bulk by submitting in a verification form.
How do I Optimize my Basic Google My Business profile?
- Open and closed hours
- Business profile picture
- The day and year you opened
- Public phone number
- Website URL
- Attributes (eg. “free wifi”)
Once you have verified your listing, you will need to begin completing your profile. Go to Google My Business dashboard, click “Info” and start choosing sections to fill out or update. Add every detail of information to be specific. Here are some things you should include in your dashboard.
TIP: Double check your dashboard and make sure all the details are accurate.
Google found that businesses with photos get 35% more clicks while making them look reputable.
These are some type of photos Google suggest to include in your listing.
- Exterior/interior & common areas of your business (min. 3 photos).
- Product or food & drink (1 or more photo per type or service)
- Employees at work (min. 3 photos)
- Team and staff (min. 3 photos)
TIP: In addition, add videos (30 seconds or shorter)!
90% of people read reviews before purchasing. Encourage your customers to leave reviews on your dashboard and make sure to respond to them. This will not only help you connect with your customers but make them understand that you care.
What Google My Business Metrics Can I Track?
Google My Business Insights allows you to see how many people find your business in Google Maps and through local searches. Go to Google My Business Insights and you will see a pie graph.
Direct (green): Customers who find your listing searching for your business name or address.
Discovery (blue): Customers who find your listing searching for a category, product, or service.
Branded (yellow): Customers who find your listing searching for a brand related to your business.
This graph will help you understand how and where your customers are coming from and how you can improve your SEO strategy.
How do I Improve my Online Marketing based on my Google My Business Results?
Now that you know how to set-up your listing it’s time to start using it to drive leads and sales for your business. To get started with a few GMB marketing tasks focus on the following features to get into a routine.
Reviews: Look at your reviews as they happen so you can respond to them in a timely manner saying thank you if they are positive or address negative posts immediately. You should also be copying and pasting your review URL in order to ask new clients or customers to review their experience with your product or service.
Photos & Videos: Add photos and videos of your business to your GMB listing once a month if you have new things you want to showcase.
Metrics: Get into the habit of reviewing your metrics on a weekly or monthly basis to see how you can update your GMB marketing strategy.
How do I find someone to Manage my Google My Business Listing?
To start getting more exposure for your business, look for a consultant or agency that manages Google My Business Listings (GMB) for a multitude of clients. Ask the company you’re interested in for references from clients that have their listing managed by that agency or consultant. Ask questions like “What results have you received from Google My Business?”. If the customer doesn’t have results tracked or doesn’t know anything other than the fact the supplier set up Google My Business, that is a red flag.
For more information on how we manage Google My Business Accounts for our clients, please contact Engagement Marketing for assistance.