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Why Your Google Business Profile Is So Important

September 7, 2022

Posted by: DevDigital

Why Your Google Business Profile Is So Important

If you are a local business that depends heavily, or exclusively, on walk-in traffic, you shouldn’t miss an opportunity to show up in local search results. Why not take advantage of Google Business Profiles (formerly, Google My Business) to do just that? A Google Business Profile is more than a simple directory listing; it is a way to promote your latest services, products, and news to new and future customers. Did you buy a food truck? Tell people when and where they can find it. Did you start carrying a hot new line of electric scooters? Make sure potential buyers know it.

The 411 on Google My Business

The most important thing to know is that Google My Business is giving way to Google Business Profile. Your Google Business Profile is your directory listing but, of course, it goes far beyond any static business listing. You can share more information, and update it at will. You also show up on Google Map searches and in Google Shopping. These are good business reasons for claiming your Business Profile and learning how to get the most out of it. A complete, accurate, and frequently updated Google Business Profile is important because local and mobile search are so important now.

Local and Mobile Search

In 2020, about 90% of Internet users searched for information on local businesses. At least 40% of people who search for local businesses online are going to check Google Maps. Logically, you want your business to show up on local searches as much as possible. 92% of local searchers will select a business on the first page of their local search results, again, according to stats shared by digital marketing pros at HubSpot.

If you show up in local searches, on mobile devices or not, you are going to attract more customers. According to research reported by HubSpot, 72% of consumers who did local searches visited a store within 5 miles, and 88% of people who search for a local business on their mobile device will call or visit within one day. Those stats make a compelling case for business to use their Google Business Profile. But, how do you make the best use of that free digital real estate?

How to Optimize your Google Business Profile

You can create a profile easily enough. Once you have a Google account, it takes about 20 to 30 minutes to take care of the basics. Firstly, complete as much of the profile as you can. Make sure any obvious keywords related to your products, services, or industry are in the business description. If your machine shop offers mobile welding or emergency services, mention them. When someone searches for “mobile welding near Nashville” for example, your local business is more likely to show up near the top of that individual’s search results.

Here are some other tips from Hootsuite:

  • Verify your location. This is an optional step, but using the Google verification process makes your business a little bit more likely to show up in Google searches.
  • Use photos. Sharing professional photos of your menu, facility, waiting room, finished work, or whatever is most relevant to your customers to earn more clicks.
  • Add any special attributes or features that apply to your business. The features you can choose to list will depend on the category, but attributes do not. Any business could be veteran-owned (an attribute) but only select establishments can advertise curbside pickup (a special feature). Use as many as apply, because one or more of those things will turn out to be super-important for some searchers who find your listing.
  • Do some keyword research to find out what terms people are using to find businesses like yours. You might overlook some useful terms if you focus on obvious terms that come right to mind as you create your profile.

Once you have a complete and verified profile, you can use it as a digital marketing tool.  

Using Your Profile

Treat this listing as one element of a digital marketing campaign, like running paid ads and blogging. Here is what you can do to get maximum value out of your business listing:

  • Respond to reviews. Good reviews offer evidence from real people that you really know what you are doing. Negative reviews are an opportunity to engage online and maybe change a disappointed customer’s mind. Being responsive to valid criticism also looks good to Web surfers, who will look at the reviews.
  • Keep everything current. You can and should update basic information as needed. If your hours have changed, or your phone number, you can easily publish those changes. If any of the special features or attributes described above no longer apply, you can delete them. If new attributes or features apply, add them as soon as possible.
  • Post frequent updates. This is a major reason why your Google business listing is so valuable as a marketing tool. Another directory or listing may offer limited scope for sharing new information. Your Google listing is a great no-cost way to share specials, holiday sales, new services, new locations, and other information with potential customers.

These tactics work better as part of an overall digital marketing strategy that incorporates content marketing, paid advertising, and search engine optimization work on your website.

Use Every Digital Marketing Tool at Your Disposal

Make full use of your Google Business Profile and you are going to attract more customers over time. To make the most of your online marketing efforts you want to pay some attention to paid advertising and on-site SEO too. If you want to outsource some of that marketing work, the digital marketing team at DevDigital has a dedicated team of writers, project managers, and SEO experts ready to help. Contact us today to set up a short discovery call.

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