How to get more from your Google My Business listing

Google My Business can be a powerful tool for certain types of businesses to attract more customers, but most people fail to tap its true potential.

In fact, most don’t even begin to scratch the surface.

When most people create a profile, they just fill out the basic contact information and leave it there.

It’s a good start, but there are a number of other details you can optimize to improve your ad rank.

These same details can also help demonstrate your expertise, instill confidence, and turn searchers into prospects.

And the best part is, it’s not incredibly complicated. It just takes time and constant effort.

1. Contact details

Obviously, you need to add your business details to your Google My Business profile, but that’s the bare minimum.

This includes your address, service areas, hours of operation and your phone number.

2. Description

Your description can help improve your rankings, but also provides a great opportunity to give searchers a reason to do business with you.

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A lot of people fail here either by writing a garbage description or simply not writing one at all.

Treat it like you would any other content – focus on the issues you solve for your customers instead of rambling on how long you’ve been in business, the size of your business, or any nonsense other than people often use it when they write about their business.

You need to talk about them and their needs, not about yourself and your ego.

As you might expect, it’s important to include keywords that people might use when researching the type of product or service you’re offering, but don’t overdo it.

Also, keep in mind that space is limited here (750 characters), so make sure the most important information is at the beginning, otherwise they might not see it.

3. Notice

Positive reviews can quickly turn your business from an unknown entity into a much more reliable one.

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This is a concept called social proof, which is deeply rooted in human psychology.

Basically, it’s a shortcut to building trust, because when people see that others have purchased and are happy with your products or services, many will assume that they will likely have a similar experience.

Getting customers to leave reviews takes a lot of work, but it’s well worth it because of the effect it has on building trust.

The key here is to ask when positive emotions are at their peak. This can be right after the purchase, or even earlier in the process.

It is important to help your customers write their review to make sure it is useful to other potential customers.

You will want to give them advice on the key points to include that will help highlight the issues you have resolved and how it has positively affected them. It makes the reviews much more effective.

Think of it like this … which of these reviews do you find the most impactful:

“Richard is a great lawyer. I recommend his services. ”

Or…

“When I was facing an IRS audit, Richard helped me reduce the uncertainty and fear I felt by creating a solid strategy to defend myself. It saved me thousands of dollars and made the whole process as smooth and painless as I could hope for. It was really important because it allowed me to focus on running my business while he fought for me. I was blown away by his expertise, attention to detail and service. I highly recommend his services. ”

The first is positive, but empty, while the second paints a clear picture of what a client can expect if working with Richard.

Google My Business review

Make sure you respond to every review because it shows that you care about your customers.

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This is important to all reviews, but it is above all important for negative reviews because it helps offset the damage they cause while showing that you are ready to resolve issues with customers.

4. Messages

Posting to Google My Business can help increase visibility at that critical time when a searcher is looking for what you are offering.

They can help increase conversions as they provide the option to display a title, image, text message, and call-to-action button.

Current CTAs include:

  • Delivered
  • Order online
  • To buy
  • Learn more
  • Register now
  • Get the offer
  • Call now

People who use posts often use them to post promotional content types, but they can also be used to post purely informational content types.

The key is to attract searchers with value, whether it’s a promotional or informational type message.

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A well-crafted message paired with a call to action can be a powerful way to get searchers to engage with your brand and start the sales cycle.

That engagement can be an immediate phone call, or it can be getting them to your website where they can buy something, read an article, make an appointment, or otherwise engage.

A quick note – if you click on the icon in the lower right corner of a post, you can get a link for that particular post, which you can then share on other social media platforms.

5. Questions and answers

Since the entire SEO foundation is based on answering searchers’ questions, it’s no surprise that questions and answers can play an important role in optimizing your Google My Business profile.

The beauty of this tactic is that you don’t have to rely on other people to find and ask questions about your profile. It does not publicly show who asked the question, so you or your employees can ask and answer those questions.

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Q&A accomplishes two things:

  • It can help your profile rank higher which translates to more eyes on your business. More eyes on your business usually mean more leads. And more leads usually mean more money for you.
  • It also helps to demonstrate your expertise to potential clients.

Your responses show them what you know, giving them a better indication of your ability to solve their problem and whether they will enjoy buying or working with you.

You can also use it to subtly bring up relevant issues that they may not have addressed, which can help streamline the sales process later.

However, it is essential to frame these questions from the clients’ point of view. Don’t make the mistake of posting unnecessary, self-promotional garbage.

Instead, answer the types of questions you typically hear from customers and prospects.

6. Photos

Most Google My Business profiles have little or no photos uploaded, which is a huge missed opportunity.

In most cases, a business owner or marketer will upload a few photos of their storefront and call them someday.

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This is enough to help people recognize your business when they try to find it in person, but by adding more photos you can improve your ad rank as well as showcase your products or services.

It is important to use a combination of photos of:

  • Your physical location.
  • Your products.
  • If possible, your products and / or services in use.
  • Your clients / clients.
  • Your team.

It is also important to regularly upload new photos.

If you haven’t uploaded any (or more) photos and have a bunch of them ready to go, you can download this bundle all at once, as long as you keep uploading new photos.

It is not only the volume of the photos, but the volume coupled with new consistent downloads that help improve your ranking.

Ideally, you should aim to upload at least one photo per week, but more is better.

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As with most things in SEO, you should focus on quality over quantity.

We do not upload these photos only to improve our ranking, we also do this to help potential customers get a better idea of ​​how our products and services can help them.

So make sure you upload large, high-quality photos that represent your brand well.

7. Products

You can also highlight the products you are offering, which gives internet users a better overview of what you are offering and increases your chances of winning them as customers.

You even have the option of including a call to action directly linked to a page on your website. This part is pretty straightforward.

Google My Business Products

8. Benefits

This tab is another way to highlight what you do for clients, but in my experience your options are a bit limited.

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Google offers automatically suggested services based on your service category, and while it lacks many logical choices, you have the option of adding your own personalized services.

Google My Business Services

9. Company run by veterans

Google recently added the ability to indicate veteran status on your Google My Business profile.

Led by a Google My Business veteran

In my very biased opinion on this topic, this is an awesome feature, as there are many people who are specifically interested in purchasing products or services from veteran owned businesses whenever possible.

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Especially the other veterans.

This creates a powerful opportunity to quickly build trust with searchers, which increases the likelihood that they will contact you.

Fairly recently this has stopped appearing on the desktop, but according to Google My Business product specialist Ben Baker, I’ve been told this is a known issue that will be fixed.

It still displays correctly on mobile.

Manage unwanted changes

Every now and then, you’ll find suggestions for changes to your Google My Business listing that you haven’t made.

It could come from Google suggesting algorithmic changes, from well-meaning researchers, or even your competition trying to hurt you.

But if you don’t log in regularly and decline these changes, Google will apply them automatically, which can hurt your visibility and the impression you make on potential customers.

I recommend logging in at least once a week to keep tabs on these changes.

This shouldn’t be too difficult as you have to log in to create posts, upload photos, and respond to reviews anyway.

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Image credits

All screenshots taken by author, June 2020


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