Why is Optimizing Google My Business Profile important?
Optimizing Google My Business listings is essential for local businesses to succeed in today’s digital world. It is the most effective way to ensure that potential customers can easily find your business online and learn more about the services you offer.
An optimized listing will also help your business stand out from the competition and increase visibility in local search results. Additionally, optimizing your listing will help you build trust with customers, as they will be able to see accurate and up-to-date information about your business.
Before you Begin…
Before you Begin, you will need to make sure you have the Google Chrome Browser downloaded and you are logged into a Google account so we can use some of the extensions available within Chrome.
Next, navigate to this link and download the extension for GMBEverywhere for your Chrome installation and make sure it’s activated. You don’t need the paid version. The orange boxes offer features and the highlighted Text next to “GMB Cat…” Shows the categories for that business. We will use this information later when we set up your primary and secondary categories.
The business title should match the actual business name without keyword stuffing for any business already existing.
If you can secure a DBA and alter signage, business cards, etc you can “stuff” your name with a primary service keyword and location. If you do go this route, you should maintain documentation in an event that your listing gets suspended.
Images and Logo
Professionally Design a cover image and upload a high-quality version of your logo using the following size recommendations
Cover Size: 1024×576 – Maintain image when cropped to 1:1 in center
Logo Size: 720×720 min 1:1 Ratio
Additionally, you should upload photos of your working space, exterior, interior, and any other photos that help lend credibility and show the legitimacy of your business existence 2-3 of each is plenty.
Typical Size 1200×900
Add a short and simple business description that will be visible to customers when they come across your listing. It should be simple and have a hook and Call to Action that will help entice the searcher to click on your listing
Primary & Secondary Categories
The primary category is one of the most important Ranking Factors. Many search terms will only show your business if you have specific categories in your profile. Researching this is simple, make a list of all of your different service offerings and navigate to https://www.google.com/maps
Search for each of your services and observe the common business categories for each of your services. If you don’t see a pattern, zoom out on the map to a larger area (entire state) and identify a pattern. Each service will fall under a specific “category” You will want to decide what service you offer that is your primary focus and set that matching category as your primary category.
Include 1-3 additional categories as needed to make sure you cover all of your services. Do not add any unnecessary categories as that could hurt your chance to rank and “dilute” Google’s understanding of what your company provides.
Add the services that you provide to your potential customers. One of the most important things to do before this step is to do keyword research and gain an understanding of how you should phrase all of your various service offerings. Be sure to use the highest search volume versions of your services!
Ensure the Business hours that are listed on your website match your Google Listing. This consistency helps lend credibility to Google.
Consider the “true” availability for your business. If you find yourself taking calls and emails late into the evening one would suggest that your business is “open”.
Often times if your business is outside of your listed operating hours you may find yourself ranked lower in searches which could lose potential clients
Many will recommend using a tracking number on your Google business profile. If you do, i would recommend that the same number be used on your website (unless you also use DNI) as well as your citation sources. The only downside to this is that it requires a bit of additional work updating your citations if you ever switch tracking numbers.
This should be the URL for your home page that you would like to connect to your GMB. The layout of this website page should match & reflect the service offerings listed within your GMB as well.
This could be your contact us page or another appointment scheduling software that you use. There are many options but make sure it’s filled out
You should use an actual business address for this. Your business will rank in proximity to this exact address so consider if the address is located close to your desired clientele.
If it is not located close to your desired clients, consider using a trusted associate’s address (as a service area business that’s near your client) Or rent a space that can accept mail and you can use it as a storefront for your location near your customers
I recommend not hiding your address if at all possible however if you need to you can to prevent customers from traveling to the location. This location should also match the location on your website if it is shown.
Optimizing reviews for a Google My Business Profile is an important part of increasing SEO rankings locally. Reviews should be detailed and include relevant keywords that are related to the business. Ideally, your, reviews should be written in a positive tone and include specific details about the customer’s experience such as employee names, locations, dates, etc.
Reviews should also be updated regularly to ensure that the profile is up-to-date and relevant. Finally, businesses should respond to reviews in a timely manner to show customers that they care about their feedback.
By following these steps, businesses can ensure that their Google My Business Profile is optimized for SEO which will help to increase their ranking.
Product Categories & Products
Make sure to create “product” cover images (services will also be listed as a product) for each of your services/products. They do not need to be unique but you will need something to place in each of these entries.
Select your main 1-4 Product categories and try to match them as close as possible to your primary/secondary categories as well as the corresponding services for each.
The products you create should have a price, a unique description, your cover image, and a link back to the corresponding page on your website. Remember we are trying to make it painfully easy for Google to understand what you do and where you do it.
This is one of the secrets! You can use your site.Business to help you gain a TON of backlinks directly from a Google Property which is super helpful for you starting out. If you’d like to get a free template guide on how I set these up please use the contact email listed on my website and I can send you a special linked copy along with a posting strategy guide!
Hopefully, this quick guide helps out when you’re working on setting up your next Google My Business Profile. If you need any additional help please feel free to reach out and make sure to bookmark this page so you can come back to it later on as you optimize your listing!