The way people Discover, Evaluate, and Trust Local Businesses has changed for good.
4 Strategies to Improve Your Google My Business Listing
Google My Business is the best place to manage all of your online presence. It’s easy and free, so why not take advantage of it? You can claim or verify your listing, respond directly to reviews, upload photos and videos, create offers, and more. Plus, with Google My Business, you get access to insights about how people find and interact with your business on Google Search and Maps. If you don’t have a Google My Business profile, you’re missing out on the ability to differentiate yourself in Google, and get more traffic and business. Not to mention it’s a vital part of local SEO strategy.
With an estimated 40% of users searching on Google and not clicking anything at all, this means more users are finding what they need directly on the results page. So it becomes essential that your business info is accurate and up to date.
“But how does it work?
In Google SERPs, your business has the potential to be visible in what is called the local 3 pack. A list of three businesses that provide the user with a website link and the option to get directions to the business.
There used to be 7 businesses in Google’s listing, but this change forces us to be better, have to have more reviews, and better optimization to be in that top 3. However, being in the top 3 puts a little more weight on us. But if you can get to the top, you have way better chances of the consumer calling you first for your services
Tip to get started:
- Claim & optimize your Google My Business listing
-Obviously, as the owner, you may not be doing the internet marketing. But I am still going to recommend that you still access your Google My Business account. To check and make sure that everything is structured correctly.
-The next thing is to update your company name to read only that. If your company name is Bob’s Pest Control, make sure that is all it says and nothing extra.
-Then make sure you add your website’s correct link. Then use a local area code number. An 800 number just won’t cut it anymore. For a couple of reasons, for Google Maps ranking, and for the customer. Everyone wants to feel like they are calling the guy down the street. People are interested in proximity. If there is an 800 number, people are going to feel differently about calling you.
-The next is don’t use a PO Box or UPS Store. At least an office or showroom ideally. When you do change your address, it’s like setting up a website, you will have to build up that authority again. But think of it as building up a stronger foundation.
-Then you need to add photos, pictures of your staff, equipment, and anything that has to do with your company. What we have found that works best is authenticity. Just like on your website, real pictures of the team, of yourself….that’s what people care about. They don’t care about your truck. Real technicians. Even if the team is just you, or a team of 50, get those pictures on there. These are the types of things that work.
-Finally, you want to make sure your hours and services are nice & tight. Make sure Google stops tracking traffic after your store is closed and no one is there to answer calls.
- Build citations & consistency with NAP (Name, Address, Phone Number)
-You want to focus on the top 50 online directories–YP, Angie’s list, etc. But then you also want to focus on tier 2 listings or niche-specific directories. Those can prove to give you more authority. You also want to pay close attention to duplicate listings, they can hurt your listing.
- Start reaching out for REAL reviews
-I am going to suggest now that all of you should be leveraging automation. Without question. A service call is done, and an email and text message needs to be sent out automatically as soon as a job is completed, without anyone on your team having to do it manually. The people who are doing this are already dominating the markets. If you have lots of reviews you must be incredible, if you don’t I probably shouldn’t use your business. Google knows that and gives preference to the ones with more reviews.
- Add on-page optimization
-You need to have your Name, Address, & Phone number on your website that matches your Google My Business listing
-Satisfy the search algorithm’s hunger for E-A-T (Expertise, Authority, Trust)
By implementing these 4 Strategies to Improve your Google My Business Listing you will have an edge over your competition.
Google has clearly said that too many mistakes in your business listing will result in a listing being demoted in local results or removed from local results completely. Your Google Business Listing is a key part of your local marketing strategy. But in the excitement to optimize your profile, do not make the mistake of risking getting banned by Google or at minimum your rankings discounted. If you optimize your local listing properly, you will get more business in the long run.