How to Completely Optimise Your Google My Business Listing

How to Completely Optimise Your Google My Business Listing
When people are looking for a product or service, the first place they turn is to Google. The problem is that with so many sites competing for industry-specific keywords, it can be hard to get your business on the first page of the Google results, which means that more often than not, potential customers are going to your competitors. However, if you want to attract local customers to your business, then there is an elegant solution that can lead customers directly to you when they search Google in your local area, and that solution is known as Google My Business (GMB). In this article, we will look at what Google My Business is, how it works, the benefits of using GMB, and most importantly, how to optimise your Google My Business listing so that you can attract way more traffic to your website. So, let’s get right into it.

What is Google My Business?

GMB is a free tool that lets businesses manage their online presence across Google and its subsidiaries. More importantly, claiming and optimising a Google My Business account for your company is the best way to rank highly in the search results for your local area. So, how does GMB work?

How does Google My Business work?

Ultimately, GMB is a tool that allows you to make and manage a business profile. In other words, it’s like your online business card. By entering all of your business information in GMB, you can let people know your address, hours, contact information, website, and more. The reason this is so important is because Google’s search algorithm prioritises GMB listings for local traffic. So, when somebody close to your location searches for keywords relating to your industry, your GMB listing will appear at the top of the page, even above the search results, which is very powerful indeed.

What are the benefits of using Google My Business?

Using Google My Business offers a business owner a number of great benefits. First and foremost, it helps your business listing appear on the front page of Google when people search in your local area, which is massive. GMB also lets potential customers know your address and provides them with directions to your location in Google Maps. Plus, your GMB business profile shows people your reviews, hours, phone number, and website, all of which helps drive traffic and new customers to your business. As powerful a tool as GMB is, the vast majority of business owners aren’t taking full advantage of this amazing free service from Google. Most businesses still haven’t claimed their GMB accounts, and the majority of the ones that have aren’t optimised, which hinders their performance. So. Let’s go over how to optimise your Google My Business account so that you can rank high in local search results and generate more revenue.

How to optimise your Google My Business listing

There are a number of different things you can do to optimise your GMB account so that Google will rank your business profile as highly as possible using its algorithm. Let’s go over each of the important items one at a time and look at how to completely optimise your GMB account.

Setting up your GMB account

The first step towards optimising your Google My Business account is to claim your account. Most businesses that have been around for a while will already have a business profile on Google; to optimise your account, you’ll first need to claim it as your own. When you find your business listed on Google My Business, simply click “claim this profile” and complete the verification steps. If your business is brand new and hasn’t been registered on Google previously, then creating a new GMB account is just as easy; simply follow the steps on the Google My Business website to get started. Assuming then that you’ve already claimed your GMB account or set up a new one, you’re ready to move on to the next step.

Filling out your business profile

When you log in to your GMB account for the first time, you’ll be asked to provide some basic information about your business. The more information you enter, the higher you will rank in Googles search results, so be sure to provide as much accurate information as you can, including:
  • Your business category (industry)
  • The location of your business (which is the most important thing)
  • The contact information for your business
The next step is to verify your account, which is done by old-fashioned mail. You should receive a postcard from Google within 5-7 business days of registering your account. Simply follow the verification steps listed on the postcard to authenticate your account. Once your account has been verified, you can move on to the next step.

Editing your GMB business profile

Of course, in order for people to find your listing on Google, you’ll first need to publish your business profile, but before you do that, you’ll first want to add more information to your listing. So, log in to GMB and navigate to your account page. From here, you’ll want to enter any info that’s still missing from your business profile, including:
  • Your hours of operation
  • Your local service area
  • Your website (If you have one)
  • The specific services you provide
  • And any other relevant information
One important tip is to include as many SEO keywords as you can within your GMB listing, as Google uses these exact keywords to match you with the terms people are searching for. So, if you’re a plumber in Auckland, you might want to say something like, “I’m an Auckland plumber that specialises in clogged drains and sewage system installation”, or something along those lines that contains a number of different industry-specific keywords. Another important element of optimising your GMB account is to make sure you include a few photos, as Google ranks business listings with photos higher than those without. This can be a simple logo, or you could include a picture of your storefront if you have one. Ideally, you’ll want to have pictures of your location and a logo at a minimum. Once you have filled out all of your information correctly and uploaded a few photos, you’ll be ready to go ahead and publish your GMB business profile on Google.

A couple of tips to further optimise your GMB profile

After entering all of the information and uploading photos (or videos), your GMB listing should be looking great and should rank well, but there are a few things that are important to manage once your listing is live. Let’s look at some tips that will help separate you from the crowd and stand out on Google My Business.

Manage your Google reviews

Your Google reviews are one of the most important things on Google My Business. Apart from your business information, address, hours, and website, your Google reviews are the only other thing people can learn about your business at a glance in Google search results. Businesses that have better Google reviews always rank higher on Google, and customers are also more likely to trust a business with good reviews, so make sure you monitor your reviews on GMB and respond to any reviews you get, both positive and negative.

Take advantage of the product catalogue feature

Merchants that sell physical products should take advantage of GMB’s product catalogue, which will allow you to showcase your offerings. You can add products to the catalogue via the GMB dashboard, and doing so is a great way to include more SEO keywords in your business profile which helps generate organic traffic and increases your search rank.

Summary

Google My Business is an excellent free tool from Google that lets business owners manage their online presence across the Google Network. By following the steps outlined in this article, you can ensure that your GMB account is complete, informative, and optimised, which will help you rank higher in Google search results in your local area.
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