ADVRT is a marketing agency based in Southampton. We specialise in lead generation, with a particular focus on landing page effectiveness and PPC campaigns. We take care of everything from start to finish – find out more about how we work here.
Are you looking to boost your local visibility and reel in more customers? If so, you’ve come to the right place. Today, I’m here to guide you through the incredible world of Google My Business (GMB) or Google Business Profile (GBP), a powerful (and free!) tool that can catapult your business to new heights in your local marketplace.
But why should you care about Google My Business or Google Business Profile? Well, let’s put it this way – 46% of all Google searches are for local information, and businesses that optimise their Google My Business listing are 70% more likely to attract local visits. So, without further ado, let’s dive into the nitty-gritty of setting up, optimising, and leveraging Google My Business or Google Business Profile to make your business shine.
Setting Up Your Google My Business/Google Business Profile Account
Creating a Google Account for your business
First things first, you’ll need a Google Account for your business. If you don’t have one yet, head over to accounts.google.com and sign up. Make sure to use your business email address to keep things professional and organised.
Claiming or adding your business listing
Once you’ve got your Google Account set up, visit google.com/business and sign in. You’ll be prompted to search for your business. If it’s already listed, you’ll need to claim it. If not, don’t worry – just click “Add your business,” and you’re good to go.
Filling out essential business information
Now it’s time to give your Google My Business listing some pizzazz by adding all the crucial details about your business. Be thorough, as this information will be displayed on Google Search and Google Maps.
Business name: Input your official business name, and remember, consistency is key – make sure it matches the name you use on your website and other online profiles.
Address: Add your business address, and double-check it for accuracy. This will help customers find you more easily.
Contact details: Provide a phone number and email address where customers can reach you. Again, make sure these are consistent across all platforms.
Business category: Choose the most relevant category that best describes your business. This helps Google understand what you do and show your listing to the right people.
Operating hours: Enter your regular business hours, and update them whenever necessary (e.g., during holidays or special events).
Website URL: Include your business website URL so customers can find out more about you.
Optimising Your Google My Business/Google Business Profile Listing
Now that your GMB/GBP listing is up and running, it’s time to make it stand out. Here’s how:
Writing a compelling business description
Your business description is your chance to showcase your brand’s personality and unique selling points. Keep it concise (750 characters max), engaging, and informative. And don’t forget to include relevant keywords to boost your search visibility.
Adding high-quality photos and videos
A picture is worth a thousand words, and that holds true for your Google My Business listing. High-quality, visually appealing photos and videos help attract customers and showcase your brand’s authenticity. Here are some ideas:
Exterior and interior shots: Show off your business’s physical location and give customers an idea of what to expect when they visit.
Product or service images: Display your best-selling products or services to entice potential customers.
Team photos: Introduce your team to create a personal connection with your audience.
Using Google Posts to share updates and promotions
Google Posts are like mini-blog entries that appear directly on your Google My Business Profile listing. They’re perfect for sharing updates, special offers, events, or promotions. To create a post, simply log in to your GMB dashboard, click “Posts,” and start crafting your message. Remember to include eye-catching images and clear calls-to-action to drive engagement.
Utilising the Products and Services section
Don’t miss out on showcasing your top products or services directly on your Google My Business listing. Head to the “Products” or “Services” tab on your dashboard and add relevant items, along with their descriptions, prices, and images. This makes it easier for customers to understand what you offer and encourages them to choose your business.
Adding attributes to highlight unique features
Attributes are like little badges that show off your business’s unique features or offerings, such as “Free Wi-Fi,” “Wheelchair Accessible,” or “Outdoor Seating.” To add attributes, go to the “Info” tab in your Google My Business dashboard and click “Attributes.” Choose the ones that best represent your business, and watch your listing become even more enticing.
Managing and responding to customer reviews
Reviews are a crucial part of your Google My Business listing, as they influence your reputation and search rankings. Encourage your customers to leave reviews and be sure to respond to them promptly, whether they’re positive or negative. This shows you value customer feedback and are committed to delivering exceptional service.
Leveraging Additional Features of Google My Business
Using Google Analytics to track GMB performance
To measure the success of your GMB listing, connect it to your Google Analytics account. This will provide valuable insights, such as the number of views, clicks, and conversions your listing generates. Use this data to tweak your listing and improve its performance.
Creating and managing Google Ads campaigns
Ready to level up your advertising game? GMB integrates seamlessly with Google Ads, allowing you to create targeted ad campaigns that drive more traffic and conversions. You can set up ad campaigns directly from your GMB dashboard, giving you even more control over your marketing efforts.
Utilising messaging and appointment booking features
Your GMB listing can do more than just showcase your business – it can also help you communicate with customers and manage appointments. Enable the messaging feature to let customers send you messages directly from your listing, and integrate appointment booking software to streamline your scheduling process.
Engaging with users through the Questions and Answers section
The Q&A section on your GMB listing allows users to ask questions and receive answers from you or other users. Monitor this section regularly and provide accurate, helpful answers to showcase your expertise and demonstrate your commitment to customer service.
Monitoring and Maintaining Your Google My Business Listing
Regularly updating your listing with accurate information
Keep your GMB listing fresh and accurate by updating it whenever there’s a change in your business information. This ensures customers always have access to the most up-to-date details about your business.
Encouraging customer reviews and responding promptly
As mentioned earlier, reviews play a crucial role in your GMB success. Encourage your customers to leave reviews, and always respond to them in a timely manner to show you care about their opinions and experiences.
Analysing insights to identify areas for improvement
Regularly review your Google My Business insights and analytics data to identify trends, areas for improvement, and opportunities for growth. This will help you fine-tune your listing and marketing strategies to maximise your local visibility and customer engagement.
Staying informed about new features and updates to Google My Business
Google is always rolling out new features and updates to GMB, so it’s essential to stay in the loop. Subscribe to Google’s official blog, follow industry news sources like ADVRT, and participate in online communities to stay informed about the latest changes and best practices.
By now, you should have a solid understanding of how to set up, optimise, and leverage Google My Business or Google Business Profile to boost your local visibility and attract more customers. The actionable steps outlined in this guide are designed to help you make the most of this powerful tool and reap the rewards of increased brand awareness, customer engagement, and business growth.
Remember, GMB/GBP is a dynamic platform that requires ongoing maintenance and attention. By regularly updating your listing, engaging with customers, and staying informed about the latest trends and features, you’ll be well on your way to dominating your local marketplace. So go ahead, put these steps to work, and watch your business thrive!
Book your FREE Google Ads Discovery Call
We’re currently looking for new, forward-thinking, exciting brands to work with.
Ready to learn more about how we can offer google ads to your business? Click the button to learn more about our totally managed solution.