15 Jul What is Google My Business and How Do I Use It?
What is Google My Business?
You may already know (or might not even have noticed!) that Google closed down it’s Google+ feature in April. Instead, it is focusing on ‘Google My Business’. This is a free tool offered by Google which allows you to have control over your businesses online presence through a digital management system. Although it can be quite time-consuming, it does make all the difference if you want to appear higher on Google for your local area.
Where Do I Start?
Before listing your business, it is important to make sure nobody else has listed it. To do this, visit google.com/business, click ‘start’ and start typing in your business name. Google allows you to verify your business via mail, phone or email.
If somebody has already listed it, perhaps a customer or previous owner, the name will appear. This means you will need to continue editing this listing rather than starting from scratch. You can then continue by adding all important details; your business address, phone number, business category, etc. Remember that all of this information will be visible to anybody on Google – so don’t share anything you don’t want to be public.
What Should I Include?
For a perfect Google My Business listing, you will need to include;
- An address
- Description of your business, not too long
- A website link
- Open hours
- Phone number
Stuck for Images?
The images you upload are the images that will be selling your business to any potential clients who find you on Google and will also show up in a Google Image search, so make sure that they represent your business and what you stand for! If Photography isn’t your strong point – it may be worth considering hiring a photographer to take some photographs of your workplace and examples of what you do. High quality photos make a high quality first impression.
We recommend listing images for;
- A logo
- Exterior of your building for anybody trying to find you
- A cover image that sums up your business
- You doing your thing! Show a little ‘behind the scenes’ of what you do.
- Your team. Put some faces to your business by uploading a group photo of your team.
- Your finished product. Whatever it is you make – show it off!
Make it Local
The address or local area is effectively the most important part of your listing, as this will ensure you show up for local searches. For example, if you are selling bespoke wedding cakes; you’ll want to come up first for anyone searching for wedding cake makers in your local area as these will be your potential customers! If you have added an address to your business, potential clients reading your listing will be able to click the address option, which will then open Google maps and direct them. People are more likely to make a visit to you if they can see your opening hours, or at least can ring you to ask for them. It is Ideal if you have a shop and are hoping for visitors! Having an address under your listing also adds a sense of trust and legitimacy.
Google My Business also allows you to add posts on your listing. The easiest way to understand this is to think of it as a tweet or a Facebook post that appears below your listing when viewed by a potential client. This could feature a new product or remind people of a service you offer. This makes your listing seem more active and grabs visitors attention. The post can include a CTA, a URL, copy and an image. We recommend keeping each post to under 100 words. Short and snappy – make the most of it! Try to include relevant words and phrases in the posts to boost your SEO too. These keywords should be close to the beginning of your post. Images uploaded should be sized to 400 x 300. You can also add products the same way that you would on an e-commerce website. This will create links that direct you through to your website ready to place an order.
Some ideas for your Google My Business posts are;
- Book an appointment now!
- Check out this event!
- Sign up for further updates
- Learn more
- Buy now
- Look at this great offer!
Another feature is the opportunity to read and respond to your Google reviews, monitoring what is being said and shared about your business. Again, this adds legitimacy to your business listing and adds a sense of trust to potential customers who have found your page through Google. They can see real people leaving real reviews; again, adding a more personal feel to your business.
We Can Help
At Shynee Web Design & Digital Marketing we can handle your Google My Business feature for you, as well as keeping up with your social media and blog posts to optimise your SEO. Find out more by visiting our website at shynee.com!