Launching in 2014, Google My Business quickly skyrocketed one of the most crucial aspects of a local business’s online marketing campaign. Google My Business is a user interface that a business can set up and make it easier for people to find you based on their location, your location or the service you offer. With features such as opening hours, easy accessibility, contact details and product photos, when optimised correctly Google My Business is an unprecedented tool.
But why do Google My Business and SEO go hand in hand?
Often, a well optimised Google My Business page is the first thing people see when searching for your business specifically. For example, when searching for this specific plumbing shop, the Google My Business is prominent on the desktop search.
I want one, what do I need?
A Google account, your business information and an hour of your time.
Just create a google account, go to https://www.google.com/intl/en_uk/business/ and click “Add your business to Google”.
Then begin to fill out your business information where prompted. Once your My Business page is set up, you should see banner like the plumbing shop above when searching for your brand.
Where SEO comes in
Ranking for your own brand is great if you are already established as a local business. The next challenge, however, is ranking for your service or product, separate for your brand.
For example, have you ever looked for a local service or shop without knowing one by name? Bakers near me or card shop Romford for example? If your business is called ‘Smith Avenue Bakers’ you should rank when someone searches ‘Smith Avenue Bakers” once your GMB page is set up.
This is because using those keywords, there is very little competition. If someone searches “bakers near me” however, you are competing against every baker in the local area to the GPS location of ht customer searching. Especially within built up areas, this can be extremely competitive and demanding.
Google My Business can increase your chances of showing up in Google’s Local Pack, Local Finder, Google Maps, and organic rankings in general, so the more key information, reviews you can generate and appealing photos, the more trustworthy Google will see you as and therefore rank you.
Getting the edge on your competitors:
Photos are a great place to start. Photos of your products, your infrastructure so people can recognise your establishment from the street or even your staff members can all be inviting to a potential customer looking online for your service.
For example, look at these two different bakeries and their Google My Business pages:
Prestons has inviting photos of their products immediately visible to the person searching. This could play a huge part in a customer’s decision as they may want a particular product you serve that they can see in the picture without having to enquire.
Reviews are also a huge part of building the trust relationship. The more high star reviews a business has, the more reliable they seem. This can massively influence a potential customers decision.
As you can see, the 4.8 star reviews of the Prestons Village Bakery, has an impressive, inviting 5 star graphic which is one of the first things visible to the searcher. The Percy Ingle 4.0 rating only has a 4 star graphic to represent it.
This seems like a small difference and although it may well be impossible for businesses to aim exclusively for five star reviews, the difference in an extra star on your GMB graphic could be the difference in a customer choosing your establishment.
The importance of Google My Business on your local business is absolutely not to be overlooked. Setting one up can be done without any prior experience and could make an immediate difference to your company.
Here at MR SEO, we can keep track of your GMB, optimising it further and keeping track of analytics such as My Business visitors, interactions, how many times people have clicked for directions and much more information for you to build a strategy around.
This would all be included in our monthly local optimisation package along with website optimisation, monthly reports and constant communication with yourselves.