In a world where people use the internet for anything and everything, Google is the world’s most popular website. In 2021 alone, the website held more than 92% market share of all search engines, making it even more critical to ensure your business ranks on the first search page for your sector.
Today, all businesses need targeted visibility on Google to earn customer engagement and drive traffic to your website or store location. To do so, you can leverage Google Business Profile, formerly known as Google My Business, to highlight your best features and match user search intent to attract qualified customers to your services.
Ready to learn how to optimize your Google Business profile? Let’s discover how to create a profile for more customers to engage with you!
What is Google Business Profile?
Google Business Profile is a free tool on Google that allows you to provide relevant details about your organization like location, hours, services, photos, and more. Not only is creating a profile a great way to gain visibility when potential customers search for similar services, but it also helps your listing appear in other Google platforms like Google Maps and Google Shopping.
Due to an optimized Google Business Listing, 61% of businesses experience increased calls and website traffic. In fact, many savvy search engine optimization (SEO) marketers leverage their listings with a location-based strategy to increase exposure with specific geographic demographics.
Here are a few reasons why your business needs to optimize your Google My Business to rank on the first page of Google:
- Earn more visibility on Google Maps when people are searching for a business to visit in their local area
- Build trust and credibility through customer reviews
- Keeps people updated on any changes and hosts important company details in one place
- Improves your local ranking and SEO
- Helps drive more website and in-person traffic to increase conversions
Increase Visibility By Creating Your Google Business Listing
Since your business has about 33 opportunities for someone new to discover your services every day, your Google Business Listing is essential to increase your overall engagement and conversions.
Of course, before you start any optimization strategy, you need to get a profile up and running or ensure that your company doesn’t already have one. To create your listing, you can get started with these steps:
- Sign in to the Google Business Profile Manager.
- Add your business name and select the appropriate category.
- Enter your location and choose whether customers can visit you on-location.
- Include your business phone number and website – this is a critical location to use a tracking link with Google’s URL builder to monitor any traffic from your listing!
- Verify your business by including your address.
8 Tips to Optimize Your Google Business Profile
Once you’ve created your Google Business Profile, you can then start customizing and optimizing your listing to ensure you appear in relevant searches. With over 3.5 billion Google searches on per day, it’s essential to turn your profile into a 24/7 lead-generation tool for your business to drive conversions.
Here are eight key ways to increase your Google Business ranking:
1. Complete Every Section with Accurate Data
Consumers are 2.7 times more likely to consider your business if you have a complete Google Business Profile. Since Google favours the most relevant results, your listing needs to include detailed and accurate information that communicates what you do, where you’re located, and how people can reach you.
Include the following information in your listing:
- Name (this should exactly match what’s on your website)
- Addresses for all your locations if applicable
- Regular and holiday hours
- Products and services
- Attributes and categories
- Business description
- Popular questions and answers
2. Include Relevant Keywords
Like traditional SEO tactics, using relevant keywords in your listing will help Google match it to search inquiries and list your business in local result pages. If you’re not sure where to start, consider using tools like Google Analytics and Keyword Planner to analyze what potential customers are already searching for so you can use similar terms in your profile.
Once you have a list of target keywords, consider using them in these locations:
- Business description
- Profile posts
- Customer review responses
- Q&A sections
- Products and services
3. Add Branded Photos and Videos
Adding branded photos and videos to your profiles helps customers view you more credible. In fact, businesses that post photos receive 35% more website traffic and 42% more driving direction requests.
You want to avoid using stock photos and instead feature your company and services in action that better represent your brand identity. Here are a few photo suggestions you should include in your listing:
- Cover photo
- Interior photos
- Exterior photos
- Action shots of products or services
- How-to or explainer videos
4. Respond and Manage Customer Review
With 72% of consumers agreeing that they use Google reviews to find new businesses, you need to acquire reviews and respond to them to highlight your customer service. Positive reviews will positively affect how potential customers view your business and using keywords in responses can also help boost your visibility.
To encourage customers to leave you reviews, consider using a clickable tracking link in feedback emails, social media posts, and more that make it easy for them to leave a review quickly.
5. Let Customers Message You
Since most customers who search for businesses on Google are on a mobile device, they don’t have time to call or send an email and wait a few hours for a response. Instead, you can leverage Google Business Profile’s messaging feature for customers to talk with you directly from the app. Once enabled, you can automate welcome and other customized responses to quickly help potential customers get the right answers.
6. Utilize Local Posts
With Google’s Local Post feature, your business can publish products, events, and offers that help influences the Knowledge Panel. Local Posts allow you to engage with potential audience members through any device and entice people with a limited-time offer, which helps send positive ranking signals to Google.
Here are a few tips to make the most out of Local Posts:
- Develop high-quality content that’s free of spelling errors or useless information
- Include visuals and links that direct user’s to take action
- Avoid anything offensive or spam-like
7. Use Special Attributes and Categories
Special attributes and categories help you reach your specific target audience and highlight what makes you unique from competitors. When choosing a category, ensure you select a category that’s specific to your business, such as Nail Salon versus Salon, and choose secondary categories if applicable to your operation. The more niche you can be, the better you’ll be able to meet search inquiries.
If you want to highlight business features, special attributes allow you to highlight items like:
- COVID-19 protocols
- Foodservice features like takeout, delivery, and more
- Accessibility like wheelchair access
- Lodging extended stays or family rooms
- Payment options like cash-only
- Planning recommendations like reservations, LGBTQ friendliness, and more
- Activities and amenities
- Products and services
- Languages spoken
8. Ask and Answer Common Customer Questions
If your customer service teams receive the same questions, you can include them in your Google Business Profile listing to minimize troubleshooting questions in the future. The Q&A section allows you to include keywords and seed important company information that you want potential customers to know about you.
Keep Your Google My Business Profile Optimized to Boost Traffic
If you want to improve your Google ranking and drive more traffic to your business, optimizing your Google Business Listing is one of the best ways to engage with users directly in the search engine. However, since it’s a local marketing tool, it’s essential to note that this isn’t a one-and-done task. Instead, you need to build it into your strategy to ensure you’re consistently updating company information, publishing posts, updating photos, and receiving new reviews. When done correctly, your Google Business Profile has the potential to increase visibility, engagement, and conversations with your brand.
Looking to build your domain authority on Google? Get started with Trevor Tynes today.