What is Google My Business and WHY is it Important For Your Business?
How are potential customers finding businesses like yours online? A staggering 97% of searches online are seeking information about a local business, according to HubSpot. On top of that, 86% of searchers utilize Google Maps to locate a business. If your business is not one of the search results, you may be missing out BIG TIME!
What is Google My Business?
Luckily, a small business can manage all of these categories (and more) with a FREE Google My Business listing. Business owners or managers can create a listing to profile their business. Name, contact information, images and other details about a business can be listed on a Google My Business account. Once you've claimed or verified your listing, this information can help populate future Google searches.
Where will this information display?
Good news here - your information can appear in up to THREE different places! If someone searches your business or your type of business your listing can appear:
The information from your business listing can appear on the right side bar of a Google search. This space is a highly visible (it's at the very TOP of a mobile search) location where many searchers will seek detailed information.
Google Maps is a popular tool for business directions. If you ask Google for directions, this Maps listing will appear on your device and send directions accordingly. It's vital that your address is accurate in your listing to make sure your customers can find your location!
The coveted Three Pack is made up of the top three results for a search. The rank of these three positions is based on a number of factors including location, completion of business information, and reviews.
Tips For Managing YOUR Google My Business Listing:
1) Verify or Claim Your Listing
Create or claim an existing Google My Business account for your business. Once you have access to this information, take time to complete every field available - the more complete your listing is, the better!
Reviews are an important asset for your company. Try to monitor feedback from your customers and respond to any necessary reviews. You can also prompt customers to leave a review on your Google My Business page.
3) Make Regular Posts
Google My Business now allows posts to be made through your account. Like you would make any other social media post, share regular information about your business for best results.
4) Review Your Listing
Google is all about presenting the best information for the searcher. A user can actually suggest an edit to a Google My Business listing in hopes to create a better experience for the end user. What this means for your business is your customers can change your information. Try to monitor your listing on a regular basis to ensure your information is always accurate.
5) Reply to Messages
Searchers can directly message a business. It's best to stay on top of these messages and reply promptly. There are messaging features that allow an auto-response inviting customers to contact you in another way. If you don't check your messages regularly (and we suggest you do), consider setting up an auto reply for your Google My Business messages.
Key Take Away
You NEED to be on Google My Business. This listing has a big impact on HOW and WHERE your business shows up on a Google search. If you don't have a listing or don't have ownership of it, you should take action to verify or claim your listing TODAY. Once you have ownership, you're ready to make edits and ensure your business information is up to date and accurate.
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