You’ve undoubtedly Googled a business name and had their location and relevant contact information, images and reviews come up ready for your action as a customer. This is because they’ve (cleverly) opted in for a Google My Business account. With its strong local organic SEO element, it is especially important if you have a website or paid ads running. It’s a way to communicate with your customers regarding your business hours and services. However, having a Google My Business account offers benefits that far outreach the practicality of communication. Without an account, you are missing out on the myriad opportunities that can make or break the future of your business in the digital space.
So, how can you optimise your account to ensure you’re getting the most out of it?
Complete your whole profile, not just part of it. The specific and relevant information pertaining to how to contact you, when you should be contacted and where you can be reached, all applies to your ranking over like-businesses, increasing your search result position. Local results in particular favour a more is more approach to the information you supply.
Don’t let your customers or potential customers forget your name. Stay top of mind with regular updates, news and and special offers you might have. Currently, there are also options to update on your COVID-19 process and changes. You don’t want to have misinformation on there that will irritate or inconvenience your customers.
Use social proof to encourage your customers to leave a review on your business. Always reply to secure consumer trust; they have taken the time to give you a star rating and replying shows that you care and that their summation matters. Even bad reviews matter, in fact they arguably more important than the good ones, particularly in how you respond. Address it professionally and rationally, resolve where you can (or direct them to a more private communication line to resolve) and not only show that particular customer that you deal well with complaints, but also everyone else watching.
Make your profile recognisable and eye-catching. Take and post good photos (professional if your budget allows) and showcase who you are and what your business is about through them. You can also have a little fun with them; emojis are beginning to index on Google when not overdone (you want to remember your audience).
Hour or public holiday updates or changes
Sales or specials
Any relevant blogs
Users can ‘suggest edits’, so logging into your account regularly means you can cross check any user-generated changes on your listing that you have not been notified about. Google also prompts people to answer questions about your business so they can learn about your company. This type of user-generated content helps to build a community.
Think of how you are different to your competitors; what amenities do you have? What’s your point of difference? Upload information like menus or bookings links. You can also add messaging to a mobile or the Google app. This is a great way to engage with people looking at your listing and google is always watching engagement.
Lastly, keep this information updated and fresh! If you get a new menu, upload it and remove the other one, then analyse the insights and post accordingly.