Posted on 07/30/2020 at 12:18 PM
Google My Business (GMB): One of the most under-utilized free SEO tools...
For those unfamiliar, Google My Business is a great tool provided to businesses by Google that allows businesses to control the information that people see when their business is searched for.
“Google My Business is a free and easy-to-use tool for businesses and organizations to manage their online presence across Google, including Search and Maps. By verifying and editing your business information, you can both help customers find you and tell them the story of your business.” -Google Support
Understanding how to claim and optimize your Google My Business listing can be a great digital competitive advantage that helps take up more of the valuable real estate of the Search Engine Results Page (SERP).
For your convenience, this article is equipped with quick links to allow you to jump directly to the content you need most.
5. Next Steps
There are many benefits to claiming GMB beyond simply providing an all-inclusive place for information about your business. First, the rewards of time invested are high, the actual time required is low. When it comes to SEO, content writing, or how to include keyword strategy in your digital marketing efforts, it typically takes a lot of time and the reward isn’t always clear right away.
When you claim your GMB and add the content required, you can see the results in days rather than weeks or months!
Second, Google puts a high level of importance on local search results. When you update your contact info in GMB, you have guaranteed placement on Page 1 of Google SERPs for Local SEO. Most people have to pay for that through Google Ads.
"According to Google, customers are 70% more likely to visit businesses with a complete Google My Business listing, and that has been validated by our own customers that have seen a significant lift in their web and foot traffic thanks to their Google My Business presence.” - Penny Wilson, CMO of Hootsuite.
Now that you understand why you need to claim your Google My Business, let’s consider how.
Claiming your GMB is as easy as 1-2-3:
1. Claim GMB account at http://www.google.com/business
2. Verify account by postcard, phone, or email.
3. Optimize with all the latest details
GMB is, in a way, Google’s very own little social media platform (with big impact). We always recommend our clients follow a few best practices that they can and should implement when it comes to any social media profile optimization:
Always complete the entire profile.
Fill everything out as much as possible. This really helps to match searches to your business! If it’s relevant to your business, you shouldn’t leave it blank.
Don’t forget to double-check these often overlooked or neglected areas:
-Hours of operation (especially if impacted by COVID-19)
-Contact information (including relevant phone numbers)
Add relevant photos to help your business stand out!
Customers and Google Local Guides can tag your location in photos and in Google reviews, but it is a great idea to control the visuals where you need to. Be sure to include your company logo and relevant branding, a cover photo, with both internal and external images of your physical location.
Classic Image Tips from Google for Your Google My Business Profile
Google recommends a few types of high-quality photos for GMB profiles, such as:
1. Exterior Photos
Why: Exterior photos help customers recognize your business as they approach from different directions.
GRIP TIP: Consider exterior drone footage if possible. As one of our clients puts it, “I love the drone shots of our shop on our landing page. It reminds customers that even though we sell on a large scale, they’re still dealing with a hometown business. We’re people, not some huge company that doesn’t care about them!”
2. Interior photos
Why: Interior photos help your customers get a feel for the ambiance and decor of your business.
GRIP TIP: An Osmo is a great investment. This affordable piece of equipment allows you to have a controlled steady-cam shot and produce pictures and videos of amazing quality from your cell phone! It’s great for virtual walk-throughs and going live.
3. Product Photos
Why: Great photos of representative or popular products give customers a better understanding of the kinds of goods you offer.
GRIP TIP: Keep in mind the size and types of pictures you use for GMB. Photos should be at least 720 pixels wide by 720 pixels tall, and either a JPG or PNG.
4. Photos at Work
Why: Photos help customers quickly understand the type of work you do.
GRIP TIP: It can be hard for people to understand how you do what you do. Seeing is believing and understanding! Photo quality should be high, but keep it real, including on-the Jobsite work if possible. Just remember to get releases if needed!
5. Team Photos
Why: Team photos are important to present a more personal side of your establishment.
GRIP TIP: People like working with people. Just like how a good social strategy involves engaging with your audience, photos of your team being a team help humanize your business.
At Global Reach, our team of Digital Marketing experts is ready to assist you in meeting your marketing goals! Contact us for a free consultation!