21 Sep Optimising your Google My Business profile
Recently we’ve been talking about how to set up Google My Business – and answered some of the most commonly asked questions about the platform. You’d think that anything to do with Google would be a major player in the social media stakes but Google My Business is criminally underused and can provide you some amazing insights into your customers and their behaviours.
Coupled with Google Analytics and Adwords and you have a really powerful tool to help you build and adapt your digital marketing strategy.
So here are some tips you might want to consider when filling out your Google My Business profile.
Complete your whole profile
Give Google as much information about your business as you can. Google wants to know as much about your business as possible. This way, it can match you with customers who are looking for what you offer and also improve your search ranking because of this increased relevance.
That means you need to make sure that you fill in contact details, categories, attributes, and everything else you can. Make sure to use the right keywords where possible.
Google will rank you based on three factors:
- Relevance: How well your listing matches a search
- Distance: How far your location is from the search or searcher
- Prominence: How well-known a business is (this is based on several other factors)
Using the right keywords will improve your results.
For example, if you run a French restaurant, search “French restaurants” in your location. Look at related topics and terms people are using for keyword inspiration.
Posting photos on your profile helps you to stand out from other people. When you make a profile, you can add a logo and cover photo. You should do this even if it is optional because then people will see your picture and know that it is you!
Post pictures of your location, products, or work. Businesses with extra pictures receive more requests for directions and website clicks.
How to add photos to Google My Business
- Sign in to Google My Business.
- Open the location you’d like to manage.
- Click Photos from the menu.
- Choose the type of photo that you’d like to add.
- Upload your photo from your computer or choose one that you’ve already uploaded.
Post news, updates, and special offers
On Google My Business, make sure your information is accurate. Your address, opening hours, and contact info should always be up-to-date. You should also create posts for your business to inform customers of updates, new products, offers, and events. These posts can help you reach your goal depending on what it is.
How to create a post on Google:
- Sign in to Google My Business and select the location you’d like to manage.
- From the left-hand menu, click ‘Posts’.
- Choose the type of post you’d like to create from the options given.
- Enter the relevant information in each field. Copy should include necessary details and be concise. Avoid commercial slang and too much punctuation.
- Click Preview to double-check formatting and spelling. If you need to edit your post, click the back arrow.
- When you’re ready, click ‘Publish’.
If you have an option to add rich media to your post, use it. People are more likely to engage with posts that have photos or videos in them, according to Google.
Add special features and attributes
For Google business accounts, special features are available depending on the category you chose.
Here’s a summary of category-specific features available:
- Hotels can display class ratings and list amenities offered
- Restaurants and bars can upload menus, showcase popular dishes, and add a link for online orders and reservations
- Service-oriented businesses can display a service menu and add a booking button
- Small and medium-sized companies can add product catalogues
If you think your business is eligible for one of these features, but you don’t see them, you may have chosen the wrong category. You can choose up to 10 categories for your business. You can also add factual attributes to your profile like if it is wheelchair accessible or offers free Wi-Fi.
How to add or edit attributes:
- From your account dashboard, click ‘Info’.
- Find ‘Add Attributes’ and select ‘Edit’. Search for the attribute you want to add or scroll through all the available options for your business.
- Click ‘Apply’.
People trust people more than they trust businesses. A good review can be the deciding factor for someone to buy your product or hire you. Reviews also help your Google ranking. The best time to ask for a review is after you have provided a great experience.
If you are in-store or online, consider sharing a card or e-receipt that asks for a review with them. Google offers free marketing kits with stickers, social posts, and printable posters to businesses who want them!
You can also create a custom short link to make leaving a review easy.
How to get a custom URL for your Google My Business account:
- From the dashboard, click ‘Info’ and then ‘Add short name’.
- Enter your short name. It can be up to 32 characters. You may need to come up with alternatives if the name you want is taken.
- Click ‘Apply’.
When it’s ready, your short name will show on your business profile.
Respond to reviews
If people give you feedback, then it is important to thank them. According to Google and Ipsos Connect, businesses that give feedback are more likely to be trusted than others. Responding positively will build loyalty. Remember to stay respectful and professional when responding to both positive and negative reviews.
Be honest and apologise when it’s necessary. If the matter is sensitive, ask them to send you a private message. Respond to customer questions and make sure that your response comes first. This will show potential customers that your business is reliable and not full of misinformation.
Use insights to improve your paid campaigns
Another advantage to having a Google My Business profile is that it provides you with access to insights. These insights go above and beyond Google Analytics. You can track how many customers search for you, call your business, ask for directions, click on your photos, and more.
Knowing what keywords, photos, and actions are most popular can help you adjust your profile and even inform the content you create for social media.
Google My Business insights are great when it comes to your Google Ads campaigns. With a Google Business account, you can use local extensions in your ads. These extensions show ads with clickable location details. If you combine this with insights, then people will be more interested and the cost per click will go down.
So, make sure you don’t neglect Google My Business, if you optimise it and use it in the right way it can be a seriously powerful part of your marketing arsenal.
Get In Touch
Of course, if this all sounds like too much hassle and you’d like to have a chat about how we can help, drop us a line via the contact page and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible. You can also follow us on Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn.
Editorial Credit: By BigTunaOnline / Shutterstock