Nearly 50% of all Google searches are local. Without a local search engine optimization (SEO) strategy, however, you might not reach local consumers. They could struggle to find your storefront, website, or phone number online.
Before you risk losing customers, consider optimizing your Google My Business listing. What is Google My Business, exactly? It’s an online listing that can help consumers find your business online.
As part of your overall SEO strategy, your Google My Business listing can help you rank higher on Google. Higher rankings will help you reach more customers than ever before.
Not sure how to optimize your listing? Here are seven tips on how to use Google my Business for SEO.
Experience the benefits of local SEO firsthand! Get started with these seven Google My Business optimization tips today!
1. Claim Your Listing
Before you can optimize your Google My Business (GMB) listing, make sure you’ve claimed your business online. You can claim your listing here.
As you work through these steps, make sure you’re using a Google account that’s dedicated specifically to your business. Don’t use your personal account as you complete this process. If you don’t have a business Google account, create one.
When you create a new Google account, you should see an option that reads “to manage my business.” Select that option before following the remaining prompts.
Once you’ve claimed your Google My Business listing, you can make updates and improvements to your profile. Then, you can use your GMB listing as part of your overall SEO strategy.
Why is SEO important for your business? SEO can help you rank higher on Google search pages. When someone searches for your product or service, your website and GMB listing could appear.
Ranking higher on Google can help you gain more brand visibility. As you generate brand awareness and recognition, you can remain top-of-mind. When someone needs your product or service, they could recall encountering your brand.
Understanding the importance of SEO can also allow you to experience benefits such as:
- More website traffic
- Increased leads and sales
- A higher ROI
- Positioning yourself as an industry thought leader
- Generating brand trust and loyalty
- Ranking higher than competitors
Many consumers don’t look beyond the first page of a search. Reaching the top of the page will ensure they see your brand first.
2. Complete Each Section
Once you’ve claimed your GMB listing, you can learn how to use Google My Business for SEO effectively. Start by filling out every section of your profile.
As you work through this step, make sure to confirm each section is complete and accurate. Make sure the information matches what appears on your website, too. If your business appears on other online directories, match the information exactly.
For example, you should use the same abbreviations (“St.” versus “Street”) or formatting.
Neglecting to maintain consistency could impact your online presence. Your local SEO rankings might drop, too. If your rankings drop, interested customers might struggle to find you online.
Your Google My Business profile will ask for your:
- Business name
- Business category
- Phone number
- Website URL
- Photos and videos
- Business hours
Double-check and confirm that each piece of information matches what appears on your website. If the information is inconsistent, you could risk confusing customers.
For example, customers might try to call your business, only to dial a number that’s not in service. They might want to visit your store, only to find you’re not at that location. If you waste their time, they might choose a different business instead.
3. Optimize the Description
Once you’ve added the necessary information to your profile, make sure to optimize your description.
Start by gathering keyword research. What keywords do people search online to find your product or service? Look for a longtail keyword that’s more precise than “flowers” or “t-shirts.”
Then, add your target keyword to your business description. Optimizing your description could help your listing appear for relevant searches. You might have an easier time generating website traffic or visitors to your store.
Try to communicate the offers, benefits, or features your business can offer customers. Focus on your unique value proposition to stand out from competitors, too.
You only have 750 characters for your description! Make sure it’s clear, creative, and concise.
4. Choose a Category
When learning how to use Google My Business for SEO, many business owners neglect to choose the right business category. The right category will help consumers find your business. You’ll increase your chances of appearing for non-branded category-specific queries.
Then, you can generate more website traffic or foot traffic, even if customers aren’t searching for your specific business.
If it applies, consider adding a secondary category to your business listing as well.
5. Add Imagery
A picture says a thousand words, right? Optimize your listing further by adding eye-catching images. You can add both photo and video files to your GMB listing.
If you have a storefront, make sure to add photos of your shop’s interior and exterior. Consumers might have an easier time locating your business.
If you move, make sure to update the imagery.
6. Request Reviews
About 95% of people read reviews before making a purchase. Another 93% read reviews to determine the quality of a local business. Generating reviews could help brand trust grow, helping you generate leads and sales.
Ask your happy customers to post their reviews on your GMB listing. Then, use a plugin to feed those reviews to your website.
Generating fresh reviews could help with ranking higher on Google.
7. Share Regular Updates
Keep customers informed by sharing regular updates on your GMB listing.
For example, you might want to let them know if you’re closed for a holiday or event. Perhaps you want to inform customers of new products or a change in your business hours.
Sharing these updates will improve the customer experience.
How to Use Google My Business for SEO: 7 Optimization Tips for Success
Learning how to use Google My Business for SEO shouldn’t have to feel like a hassle. Instead, use these seven optimization tips to get started. Otherwise, consider working with our experienced SEO agency.
We can help boost your rankings, allowing you to reach more customers online.
Ready to start optimizing? We can help.
Contact our team today to get started.