4 Ways Your Google My Business Listing Should be Optimized for Local Searches
Local business owners would do well to set up and optimize their Google My Business listing for online searches. Why? Because doing so allows your business to appear in Google search engine results pages (SERP) and Google Maps results. When potential customers near you search for your products or services, an optimized GMB profile will pop up, complete with access to the business’s website, pictures, directions, contact information, and more.
In other words, your GMB page needs to be optimized for those people who are searching for it! If you’re looking to improve your SEO efforts, this is one important place to start. Google, in particular, is making extra efforts to provide its users with relevant results that will keep them on the SERP, such as a GMB listing where they can find all the information they need.
1. Add a Business Description
When setting up your GMB account, you may see a notification on your home dashboard to include certain elements to your profile that set it up as a legitimate business. One such element is a business description.
While you’re given 750 characters to work with, only the first 250 will appear unless a user clicks “More” next to the description on your listing. Try including your most important information first, such as those products and services customers are looking for and the service areas you’re trying to target.
But beware of keyword stuffing or coming across as spammy! Google checks these descriptions, so make yours sound natural while relevant to customer searches. Show customers why they should do business with you and what makes you stand apart from the crowd.
Certain businesses can also add service descriptions to their profile (depending on their chosen business category). These descriptions can optimize your listing even further for the prime keywords customers are using in their searches. Check the “Info” tab in your GMB account under the editable areas to see if your specific business category qualifies for service descriptions.
2. Include More Opportunities for Customer Engagement
The GMB platform is designed to give users opportunities to connect with you. The more you can create that community with your intended community, the better your business will be for it.
For example, give customers the chance to message you directly from your GMB listing. Create a personalized message they’ll receive after contacting you and respond quickly directly from your own cell phone.
Another avenue for customer engagement is the Q&A section on your listing. This is where customers can leave questions about your business and its operations. Speedily responding to these questions is a good way to prove to customers that you’re invested in serving them well. It’s also the perfect place for them to hear about your business from the source itself, as well as other past customers. After verifying your business, you can find the Q&A feature by searching for your business on your mobile device.
Google will see that engagement and reward your business for it. They want to know that their users are finding relevant information to their queries that also keeps them engaged and find the answers they’re seeking. The more you can do that, the more Google will note your business to be of worth and include it higher in results more frequently.
3. Create Business Posts
Another way to connect with your customers is by creating GMB posts. Let customers know about a limited offer, give them details for an upcoming event, or let them know about those products and services you’re wanting to target.
These posts appear just below your business contact information in your GMB listing, so make sure they are attention-grabbing and invite users to act! A powerful image is one way to do this along with a powerful description or text that makes customers want to delve further.
4. Respond to Google Reviews
Reviews matter to the customer of today. They are what a majority of your customers will use when researching your business either to instill their trust or destroy it.
Studies also show that the reviews can have a major impact on your overall ranking. One study notes, “Native reviews on GMB still have a high impact on ranking. Reviews (along with an owner’s response) show that consumers trust a business, and trust is a foundational factor in ranking.”
Build that trust and boost your ranking by actively asking customers to write reviews on your GMB listing. Then, be sure to respond to both positive and negative reviews quickly, another key factor to your reviews having the impact you want on future customers.
Know when reviews are received with reputation monitoring or management software
Improving SEO, One Listing at a Time
Each of these categories gives you the opportunity to show Google that your business (1) is relevant to consumer searches and (2) is a business they can trust for the products or services they need. Relevance and authority may just be the biggest factors that influence a brand’s Google ranking.
For help setting up and optimizing your GMB listing to prove your relevance and authority online, get in touch with the experts at Skoshe. Let our experienced staff make your brand easily discoverable for numerous user searches! We also have the tools to monitor any incoming reviews you receive, so that you can respond to them faster and build trust sooner. Contact our team today to learn more about what it will take for your business to rank well in local searches.