Google My Business—now called Google Business Profile—allows business owners to reach customers via Google Search and Google Maps.
Maintaining a Business Profile helps you increase your visibility on Google, gain credibility with reviews, and control your business information.
In fact, I believe that having a well-optimized Google My Business page is more important than having a website in 2024. Of course, having a website is still crucial, but your Google My Business page should not be neglected.
To optimize your page, it’s important to constantly post photos and updates. These can be geotagged to help Google understand the areas where you work, which can help with local search rankings.
1. Add Keywords to Your Business Description
Optimizing your Google My Business (GMB) listing with relevant keywords is a crucial first step towards local SEO success. However, keyword stuffing is a strict no-go.
As with any SEO content, natural integration is key. Craft a clear, concise description that informs visitors and seamlessly incorporates your primary keyword to boost website ranking.
While some businesses creatively weave keywords into their names, this approach requires caution and only works effectively when the keyword already exists within the original business name (e.g., “Home Renovation Auckland”).
Attempting forceful keyword integration can appear spammy and raise red flags with Google, potentially leading to penalties or even listing suspension.
Therefore, prioritize natural keyword integration within your GMB description, avoiding forced additions to your business name.
By embracing organic keyword usage, you can unlock the full potential of your GMB listing and achieve local SEO success without compromising authenticity.
2. Engage Visitors With Photographs
In today’s visual world, captivating images are the first impression your Google My Business (GMB) listing makes. Prospective customers, whether seeking a delectable dining experience or a unique product, crave visual confirmation before making a decision.
Businesses with high-quality GMB photos reap significant benefits, with a staggering 42% increase in direction requests and a 35% boost in website clicks.
Invest in high-resolution, professional photographs that showcase your business in its best light. Blurry, poorly composed images can leave a negative impression and deter potential customers. Consider hiring a professional photographer to capture the essence of your business, including the exterior, interior, staff, and products or services you offer.
3. Update Local Directories With Your Business
While optimizing your Google My Business (GMB) listing is crucial, don’t overlook the power of other local directories like Yelp, Yellow Pages, Hot Frog, and Yahoo Local.
These directories act as additional pathways for new customers to discover your business, highlighting the importance of accurate and up-to-date information. Inconsistencies in address, hours of operation, or contact details can lead to customer frustration and lost opportunities.
Maintaining consistent information across directories not only improves customer experience but also strengthens your SEO presence. Building a comprehensive network of optimized citations sends positive signals to search engines, boosting your visibility and ranking in local search results.
The GREAT Guest Posts’ Local Business Listings & Citation Building Service can alleviate the time-consuming burden of directory management. We’ll conduct a thorough audit of your existing listings, ensuring accuracy and completeness.
We then extend your reach by building high-quality, optimized citations across relevant directories, maximizing your exposure and propelling your local SEO success.
4. Check All of Your Google My Business Settings Regularly
The business landscape and Google’s algorithms are constantly evolving, necessitating ongoing vigilance and adaptation for optimal Google My Business (GMB) performance. It’s your responsibility, or the responsibility of your chosen agency, to stay ahead of the curve and keep your listing fresh and relevant.
One simple yet effective optimization tactic involves revisiting your listing’s categories. Regularly review Google’s assigned category and consider if it accurately reflects your current business offerings.
Don’t hesitate to adjust it for improved accuracy. Additionally, leverage the “additional categories” feature to further refine your listing and attract more qualified leads.
Localization is key. Ensure your listed phone number features a local area code and that your GMB service area only encompasses the regions you actively serve.
While expanding your service area might seem enticing, resist the urge unless it aligns with your actual business strategy. Such misrepresentation can ultimately harm your credibility and deter potential customers.
5. Solicit Reviews From Satisfied Customers
Reviews are the lifeblood of any successful Google My Business (GMB) listing. After captivating viewers with your business photos, reviews take center stage, influencing customer perception and ultimately driving decision-making.
Positive reviews build trust, showcase product/service quality, and reassure potential customers. But their impact goes beyond customer sentiment, directly influencing your SEO ranking.
Google prioritizes businesses with more positive reviews in search results, granting them increased visibility and attracting more potential customers.
While acquiring positive reviews isn’t always effortless, proactive strategies can significantly boost your review count. Consider sending follow-up emails after transactions, offering a convenient link to your GMB listing for easy review submission.
Some businesses even integrate review links into their checkout process. Regardless of your chosen strategy, consistent efforts to solicit reviews are crucial for bolstering your GMB presence.
6. Google My Business Common Mistakes
I audited a lot of Google My Business listings last year and these are some common mistakes most businesses make while optimizing their listing.
GMB is such a powerful tool for many types of businesses to manage their online presence across Google, including Search and Maps.
Here are the common mistakes I’ve seen over and over
- Incorrect URL for the website (the final version of the URL which users land on – most of the URLs were lacking https or www)
- Unclaimed listings
- Incorrect or missing info
- Update your opening times and other relevant info regularly.
- Lack of reviews
Search for your business listing and click the “Ask for reviews” button. You’ll get a short URL – include it in your post-purchase communication!
- Not responding to reviews.
- Good or bad – you should respond to reviews.
- Not adding photos regularly
Try to add at least a photo or two weekly. It works wonders. Add the photos for all categories (logo, interior, exterior, teams…)
- Not adding your primary and secondary services
- Low-quality business description.
Leverage its full length. Bonus tip – mention your services and service areas.
- Not having a GMB website
- Not sharing short posts
On the new GMB interface search for “Add update” and post regularly. You can share news updates, offers, events, and more.
Watch Your Local SEO Soar!
Don’t let your business miss out on the benefits of a fully optimized GMB listing. Take action now, otherwise, you’re missing out.