As you know, having information easily accessible online for your customers is essential. Most companies will optimize their website and set up a social media presence, but often skip the fundamental step of setting up your Google My Business profile.
Google is the most prevalent and used search engine globally; according to Global Stats, Google currently has 92% of the world's search engine market share, meaning when people need to find a company’s information quickly, it's going to be on Google. Ensuring you are fully optimizing your platform to align with the way Google works is a definite way to drive more traffic to your website.
Google My Business allows you to verify your business with Google, which gives you two key features. It establishes your business's physical address that can be found both through search and through maps. Plus, it provides viewers with essential information about your service that may convince them to book with you and not your competitor.
How Do I Set It Up?
Starting is relatively straightforward; head to google.com/business, and start the process. The actual sign up is quite simple, but the devil is in the details here. It's vital to set up your business correctly to maximize the service's potential.
There’s a reason why so many people use Google My Business; it does a fantastic job of quickly providing relevant information—finding the most suitable businesses for the search terms provided. If you are an HVAC company, make sure you tag yourself as an HVAC service to come up when people need you. Use as many of the tags related to your service as possible; you want to appear for relevant searches as often as you can.
Tip: Make sure you have put in an address that can receive mail as google will send a postcard as the last step in the verification process. If you are creating satellite offices for the purpose of appearing for hyper-local Google searches, ensure that the address you use is one you have access to.
Along with the information on your Google My Business listing, you need to provide images. You want to make sure the photos you choose makes your business look stable and trustworthy. If someone is looking for a new air conditioning system, they want to ensure they are working with a reputable company. Suppose they type in the keyword “ Furnace Repair Toronto” into Google and see two results. One has a single exterior photo from google maps with no other information; the other is branded with a logo, pictures of their staff, photos of their fleet of wrapped vehicles and the office. The person will likely pick the branded company only because it looks more established, so they trust it more. They have no idea what type of service each company provides, but they have already decided which company has earned their business.
What's the best way to build credibility with both Google and prospective customers? Reviews. By gaining positive reviews on your Google My Business Profile, people will be more likely to contact you, and Google will also rank you higher; therefore, you will appear more often and higher on searches. Ask your customers to leave reviews if they were satisfied with the work you have done. This simple step can have a significant impact on your business in the long run.
Tip: If you are running Local Service Ads (Google Guaranteed) your ad placement is determined by the number of reviews on your Google My Business account. Ensure you are always prompting your customers to leave their feedback. Don't stress as much about bad reviews lowering your ranking. Low star rating reviews provide you with a great opportunity to respond and show others how you will handle a poor customer experience.
How Does This Help My SEO Performance?
Google is continuously updating its software to ensure users get the best quality search results. Doing everything you can to optimize your content is the name of the game. Having your information available on Google My Business will boost your website traffic. Instead of a search engine having to scan your website for information, it already has a verified source through your Listing. Google My Business also provides optimization for all of Google's platforms, like maps. By making it easier for someone to find your company, you are significantly boosting your SEO score, getting you more booked jobs.
Make sure to continue updating your profile as your business changes and grows, because the last thing you want is ten negative reviews because your hours are wrong. As you continue to build your online platform taking advantage of Google My Business is the next step. The more effort you put into your listing, the more it will give back to you, so make sure to take your time when you fill it out. Make your presence known and reap the benefits.