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6 Ways to Leverage Google Business Profile for Better Rankings

7
  Minute read

Not sure where your nearest coffee shop is? Google it! 

Want to find out if there are online tutors in your local area? Google it. 

Looking for a local grocery store? Google it! 

Where would we be without Google? 

Having a presence on Google Business Profile is a truly non-negotiable factor of running a business in the 21st century, ESPECIALLY for local businesses!

What is Google Business Profil?

Google Business Profile, formally Google My Business, is a free tool provided by Google that allows business owners to create and manage their business listings, which appear in Google search results and on Google Maps.

It’s an important tool for businesses to establish their online presence and improve their visibility on Google, which can help attract more customers and drive more traffic to their website.

Google Business Profile provides a range of features to help businesses showcase their information, such as business hours, contact information, website link, customer reviews, updates and photos.

In this article, we'll explore some tips and strategies for making the most of Google Business Profile to improve your local SEO rankings and increase your online visibility.

So, what can you do to make the most of Google Business Profile?

There are many different approaches that can help you get the most out of this platform and use it to improve your rankings overall. 

1. Claim and Verify Your Google Business Profile Listing

Claiming and verifying your business listing on Google Business Profile is essential for any business looking to establish its online presence and attract more customers. 

By claiming and verifying your listing, you ensure that the information about your business on Google is accurate and up-to-date, making it easier for customers to find you and engage with your business. 

Google Business Profile set up screen

If a customer is choosing between a business that has clear opening hours versus one that hasn’t posted any, whose door are they going to show up at?

  1. Start by creating a Google account if you don't already have one
  2. Search for your business on Google and click the "Claim this business" button
  3. Verify your listing by providing Google with some additional information, such as your business address or phone number.

To ensure you have a successful verification: check that your business information is accurate and consistent across all of your online platforms, such as your website and social media accounts. 

It's also important to respond promptly to any verification requests from Google, and to provide any additional information they may require. 

Once your listing is set up, it’s important to keep it regularly updated, just as with your website, so be sure to add new photos, keep information up-to-date and request customer reviews. 

2. Optimise Your Business Information

When setting up your Google Business Profile listing, it's essential to ensure that your business information is accurate and comprehensive to make it easier for customers to find and engage with your business online.

Let’s take a look at this comparison:

Google Business Profiles - one optimised, the other not - difference between using images, showing opening times and collecting reviews.

Taking into consideration the differences between these two profiles, which one would you be more inclined to choose?

To optimise your business information;

  • Make sure that your business name is the same across all of your online platforms
  • Check that your address and phone number are correct and up-to-date
  • Add your website URL
  • Accurately mark the primary category of your business to reflect your services
  • Note your service hours and any foreseen closure like public holidays  

3. Use High-Quality Photos and Videos

Photos and videos are crucial for businesses to showcase their products, services, and overall brand identity on Google Business Profile.

More often than not, people will choose a restaurant or a service based on the images. Make sure to get your best content onto your profile!

How to add photos and videos to your listing:

  1. Log into your Google Business Profile account and select the "Photos" tab. 
  2. Upload photos and videos of your business, including your products, services, team members, and more.

Top Tip: Make sure to use relevant keywords in your photo descriptions to help your listing appear in relevant search results.

screenshot of Google Business Profile manager

Image Source

When it comes to using high-quality photos and videos on Google Business Profile, there are a few things to keep in mind:

  • First, make sure that your photos are well-lit and in focus, and that they accurately represent your business
  • Avoid using stock photos or low-quality images, as these can detract from your listing's overall credibility. 
  • Consider adding videos to your listing, such as a virtual tour of your business or a promotional video showcasing your products or services. 

4. Encourage Reviews (and Respond to Them!)

There really is no better marketing strategy than customer reviews.

Reviews provide social proof and valuable feedback from customers. Positive reviews can help attract new customers and build trust in your business, while negative reviews provide an opportunity to improve and address any issues.

In fact, 79% of customers put as much weight on online reviews as they would on personal recommendations so you should definitely be leveraging Google Business Profile for this.

To encourage reviews on Google Business Profile, start by providing excellent customer service and asking satisfied customers to leave a review. 

You can also include a link to your Google Business Profile listing in your email signature or on your website to make it easier for customers to leave a review. Remember to follow Google's guidelines for soliciting reviews, which prohibit offering incentives in exchange for positive reviews.

When it comes to responding to reviews, it's important to be professional and courteous, even when addressing negative feedback. Always thank customers for taking the time to leave a review, and address any concerns or issues raised in a helpful and constructive manner. Keep in mind that your response is visible to all customers, so it's essential to maintain a positive and professional tone.

Top Tip: use relevant keywords in your business description to help your listing appear in relevant search results. 

Google Business Profile Google Reviews example for Beyond Agency showing top keywords as website and results

You can also use Google Business Profile Attributes to highlight your unique features; standing out from the crowd can go a long way.

Some top tips for managing your reviews well: 

  • Respond promptly to reviews 
  • Keep your responses short and to the point
  • Personalise your responses to show that you value and appreciate each customer's feedback. There is nothing worse than a response that has clearly been copied and pasted!

By following these tips and encouraging reviews on Google Business Profile, you can help build a strong online reputation and attract more customers to your business.

5. Post Regularly to your Google Business Profile

Posts on Google Business Profile are an essential tool for businesses to share updates, promotions, and other important information with customers. 

By creating regular posts, you can engage with customers and encourage them to take action, such as visiting your website, making a purchase, or contacting your business.

You should make sure to post regularly to keep customers engaged and up-to-date on your business's latest news and promotions.

Google Business Profile for Beyond Agency showing recent posts

Make sure to keep your posts short and to the point, use high-quality images, and include relevant keywords in your post descriptions to help your posts appear in relevant search results. 

How to create a post on Google Business Profile?

  1. Log in to your account and select the "Posts" tab. 
  2. From there, you can choose the type of post you want to create, such as an event or offer, and add relevant information and images. 
  3. You can also add a call-to-action button to encourage customers to take action.

You can also post to your Google profile via many social media scheduling tools, such as Semrush or HubSpot.

Consider experimenting with different types of posts, such as polls or videos, to keep your content fresh and engaging. By following these tips and using posts on Google Business Profile, you can help attract more customers and build a strong online presence for your business.

6. Track & Monitor Your Performance

Just as you would check your website performance via Google Analytics, or Instagram data through the Insights to gauge what is working and what isn’t with your online presence, you should also track your performance on Google Business Profile. 

This is crucial for businesses to understand how their listing is performing and make data-driven decisions to improve their online presence. 

By monitoring your performance, you can track important metrics such as how many customers are viewing your listing, how they are finding your business, and how they are interacting with your content.

How to track your performance on Google Business Profile? 

  • Log into your account and select the "Insights" tab. 
  • In there you can view key metrics such as how many views and clicks your listing has received, how customers are finding your business, and how they are interacting with your content. 
  • You can also use third-party tools like Semrush to track your performance and compare your listing's performance to that of your competitors.

Our advice for monitoring your performance? 

Set goals and benchmarks for your listing's performance, track your progress over time, and make data-driven decisions to improve your listing's performance. For example, if you notice that customers are finding your business through certain keywords, you can optimise your listing to include those keywords more prominently.

By monitoring your performance on Google Business Profile, you can make informed decisions to improve your online presence and attract more customers to your business.

Google Business Profile, Wrapped!…

If you're not already using Google Business Profile for your business, you're missing out on a goldmine of potential customers! With its easy-to-use interface, powerful features, and unbeatable reach, Google Business Profile is a must-have tool for any business looking to succeed online. 

Claim your listing, optimise your information, add stunning photos and videos, encourage reviews, create engaging posts, and track your performance to see your business thrive!

Emma Fieldhouse Founder of Beyond Agency
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