Top 5 Ways to Leverage Your Free Google My Business (GMB) Listing
Google My Business is a free way for your business to engage with both current and future customers. By keeping your profile up-to-date and complete with important contact information like your phone number, hours, and website address, you can keep customers informed on what’s happening at your business and when they can visit you.
How Do People Find You on Google?
Potential customers can search for your business specifically through Google to find your website, address, hours, and reviews. They can also search for a product or service in your area, which would bring up your Google My Business profile, based on keywords or phrases (example: "pizza places near me" or "coffee shops in Kansas City"). One great thing about GMB is that customers can find you through Google Search or Google Maps, so whichever platform they prefer to search by, your business will be listed in the results.
Why is it Important?
Around 60% of smartphone users contact businesses through the GMB interface using the click-to-call option. The majority of organic searches come from Google -- up to 90% for worldwide searches. People are 73% more likely to trust a business if they read positive reviews from other people, especially people they may know. Finally, around 82% of adults conduct research online before making a purchase. All these statistics support our recommendation that having a Google Business listing that you not only create, but manage and post to regularly is important to stand out online.
This is a FREE tool, but lots of businesses are still neglecting it. Chances are, Google may have even created a listing for you, so it's important that you take charge and manage what information appears about your business in search results. Fortunately, it's not that complicated. Here are the top five things you'll want to do to leverage your free Google My Business listing:
1. Claim and Verify Your Listing. This can be done via phone call or text and the verification will be linked to your Gmail account for updates and notifications.
2. Complete Your Listing Profile. Be thorough, add photos, your logo, details about your services, a description, etc. All searchable content to help people find you. Pay attention to the categories your business is listed in! This is the best tool for using keywords for Search Engine Optimization (SEO), make sure to include them in your description as well.
3. Get Google Reviews. Your goal is to have more reviews and a more active listing than your competitors! Be sure to respond when you do get a review, and follow up on anything negative. You can even incent positive reviews and use them on your other social platforms as content!
4. Post Content to Google like you do to social media. This content can be the same content you use for Facebook, Instagram, and the like. It’s a great way to let your customers (and Google) know that you’re an active business.
5. Keep your hours updated throughout the year. If you’re going to be closed for Memorial Day, Black Friday, or Christmas Eve, let your customers know. It’s easy to modify hours for special occasions without changing the hours permanently for your business.