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04/09/2019

How Google My Business can put your business on the map

If you’ve ever searched “restaurants near me”, “hair salons Kent” or “marketing agencies Tunbridge Wells” in Google, chances are you have benefited from the advantages of Google My Business. It’s a free platform that is kind of like the 21st century’s answer to the Yellow Pages. You’ve already seen it from a consumer’s point of view, which means you’ve also seen how other businesses are using it to promote themselves. Here’s how you can harness the power of Google My Business to help more of your customers find you.  

Why do you need GMB?

1. The power of local

We all want to target as many potential customers as possible, but sometimes it’s a matter of quality over quantity. Research by Google found that:

    • a third of all searches have local intent – i.e. when Google assumes the searcher wants an answer from a business or organisation close to them
    • 50% of customers who make a search with local intent will visit the local business
    • 18% of these searches result in a sale

This means that, while it would be lovely for your page to come up first in the entire world, you’ll get far more traffic if you are the first within your area – Google My Business is a key tool to help you achieve this, and will even put you in the ‘Local Pack’ (a section of Google’s search results that shows local businesses related to the initial search query).

2. Putting your business on the map

What’s more, your Google My Business listing will appear in the Google Maps section of Google. How often have you searched for ‘restaurants near me’ and looked at all the red location markers on Google maps to help you choose somewhere to eat? Exactly – your customers are doing the same thing, and a Google My Business listing will literally put you on the map for them.

3. Putting you in control

Having your own Google My Business page also enables you to control what shows in Google’s search results when someone searches for your business name or for a related search. 

4. At-a-glance information

Simply put, we’ve become lazier. It’s the truth and, in all honesty, your potential customers are no different. It’s all well and good having the world’s most beautiful website but, sometimes, customers want to know the basics about your company before they even consider the quality of services you provide. This is where Google My Business can help you. It will tell customers all the important information at a glance: contact information, photos, directions, reviews, where you are (importantly, how far you are from them) and opening hours.

5. Boosts Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)

In addition, using GMB will benefit your SEO (put your website higher up on relevant online searches). This is partly because Google puts a value on locality (see point 1), but also because Google rewards people who engage with its platforms, so it boosts websites that have a related Google My Business page in its searches.

6. Capture Google reviews – which also boosts SEO

Having a Google My Business page means your customers can leave you Google reviews – which can influence other people to engage with your business, but also gives a further boost to your SEO. Positive reviews will obviously increase the appeal of  your business while bad reviews provide an opportunity to respond in a professional manner. 

7. Gain customer insights

The additional analytics from your Google My Business page will give you further insights about your client base.

Getting on Google My Business

If your business has a physical address (even if it’s your home) and you meet customers in person, you’re eligible for a Google My Business listing.  Signing up is free and simple  and there’s a handy step-by-step guide to help you. From there you can customise all your information; from your operating radius to contact information.  Fill in all the sections: the more complete your page is, the more Google will value it.

Getting the most out of your Google My Business page

Once you’ve set up your Google My Business page, you need to be proactive for it to delver greatest returns for your business:

  • Encourage Google reviews – essential if you want to appear at the top of relevant, local online searches.
  • Post updates – the more active you are, the more SEO credits you will win. Unfortunately, you can’t schedule posts on Google My Business, so you have to login regularly to post something new.
  • Post photos – photos are great for capturing people’s attention and for showcasing your brand, and – again – you’ll get Brownie points from Google.

Not having a Google My Business page is a complete own goal: it’s an easy marketing win, so make sure your business is on the map by setting up your page and keeping it up to date.

To find out more about how Sharp Minds Communications can help with your marketing, email communications@sharpminds.agency 

Based in Tunbridge Wells, Kent, Sharp Minds offers brand development, digital marketing, offline marketing and public relations to businesses across Kent, Sussex, Surrey and Greater London. You can see what our customers say about us here.

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