Everything entrepreneurs need to know about Google My Business
Google My Business is a powerful tool that puts businesses in front of customers near them. If you’re thinking this is just another online fad that you can put on the back burner, think again. Claiming and optimising your profile today will mean an increase in visits to your website and physical business tomorrow.
If you want to see more leads coming your way then read on to find out why Google My Business is so vital for entrepreneurs and small business owners.
What is Google My Business?
Google My Business is a free tool that allows you to manage and update how your business is appears in Google search results. If you’ve heard anything about Search Engine Optimisation, you’ll know that being on the first page of Google search results is key to winning business in a digital world.
Google My Business fast tracks your brand to that front page, so long as you claim your profile, optimise it and keep it up-to-date.
You can also keep track of how it is performing. Once you’ve set up your profile, Google will start collecting information for you about:
- how many times people have seen your business information in a search result
- how many times directions to your business have been requested
- and how customers found your listing, either by business name or by searching for keywords related what you do.
Who can use it?
Any business that has some face-to-face interaction with customers can use Google My Business. If you have a physical shop, office or place where you meet clients, you’re in.
However, if your business is solely online then you’ll have to work on the SEO of your website.
Tips for setting up Google My Business
Ensuring the information held by Google is up-to-date and accurate is vital to winning business from people searching for services or products like yours. Here’s how to optimise your Google My Business profile:
Pack it with information
Once you have set up and verified your listing make sure you fill it with plenty of information about your business. Add your address, business hours, contact numbers and your website URL.
Add powerful images
Brands with photos in their Google My Business profile get 35 percent more click throughs to their website.
Make sure you upload several high quality snaps of your place of work, staff and products. You can also add your business logo and pick one of your best images as a cover photo. This will be the most high profile picture on your profile, so make sure it’s punchy.
Members of the public can also add photos. These will be differentiated by being marked as ‘customer’ or ‘owner’.
The Q&A feature is a very easy way to answer frequently asked questions about your business. Customers can also post their own questions, so make sure you answer these. This will save people contacting you with the same enquiries.
Another way customers can influence your listing is with reviews.
Encourage your customers to leave reviews and respond to them whether they are positive or negative. Responding when someone hasn’t been satisfied shows that you take their feedback seriously. Always be polite and take bigger issues offline by inviting them to contact you direct. Read more about handling online crises.
The quality of reviews and how you respond to them will make your business stand out against local competitors.
Use Google My Business posts
Keep your profile up to date with news about your business, events or special offers by adding these as a post to your profile. These will show up in your profile when it appears in search results. We use this feature to share our latest blog posts and increase traffic to our website
If you would like to find out more about creating content to share on your Google My Business profile or other ways to boost the SEO of your business website, then we can help. Amplify PR is a Southampton-based PR and marketing agency offering a range of services to businesses. Get in touch to discuss how we can support your business online.