Google My Business (GMB) is a free and effective tool that can help local businesses get more traffic to their website. It’s an essential tool that every business owner should use to improve their online visibility and attract more potential customers.
For this RAD Resource article, I will discuss how to use Google My Business to get more traffic to your website, including how to set it up. I’ll cover the basics of Google My Business and provide tips on how to optimize your GMB profile to attract more potential customers.
What is Google My Business?
Google My Business is a free tool provided by Google that allows business owners to create and manage their business listings on Google Search and Google Maps. With Google My Business, you can manage your business information, such as your business name, address, phone number, hours of operation, and photos. It will also show up on Google Maps as a nearby option if people are browsing a similar business or keyword as yours.
Google My Business also allows you to communicate with your customers by answering their questions, responding to their reviews, and sharing updates about your business. Your Google My Business profile is a critical element of your online presence and can help you get more visibility, more traffic, and more customers.
How to Set up Google My Business
Setting up your Google My Business profile is a straightforward process. Follow these simple steps to create your profile:
Step 1: Sign in to Google My Business
Go to google.com/business (this link opens in a new tab) and sign in with your Google account. If you don’t have a Google account, you will need to create one.
Step 2: Add your Business Information
Once you’re signed in, you will be prompted to add your business information, including your business name, address, phone number, and category.
Make sure that you use the same business name and address that you use on your website and other online directories. This will help Google to verify your business information and make sure that it’s consistent across all platforms.
Step 3: Verify Your Business
If you have a physical business location, Google will send you a postcard with a verification code to the address you provided. Once you receive the postcard, log back into your Google My Business account and enter the verification code.
Step 4: Add Photos and Additional Information
Once your business is verified, you should absolutely add photos and additional information to your Google My Business profile. This can include your hours of operation, website, social media links, and a brief description of your business. You are also able to post updates such as a short blog article, create an offer (without coming across as spammy or they will reject your update), etc. I highly recommend creating an update of any sort at least once a week to get started. After a month or so of weekly updates, you can tone it down to once every couple of weeks.
Optimizing Your Google My Business Profile
Now that you have set up your Google My Business profile we should talk about how to optimize it to get more traffic to your website.
1. Complete Your Profile
The first step in optimizing your Google My Business profile is to make sure that you have completed all the necessary information. This includes your business name, address, phone number, website, hours of operation, and photos.
Make sure that your business information is accurate and up-to-date. This will ensure that potential customers can find your business and contact you.
2. Choose the Right Category
Choosing the right category for your business is essential for improving your online visibility. Google allows you to choose up to 10 categories for your business.
Make sure that you choose the most relevant category for your business and make sure it is listed as the “primary” category. This will help Google to understand what your business is about and show it to potential customers who are searching for businesses in your category.
3. Use Relevant Keywords
Using relevant keywords in your business name, description, and posts can help improve your online visibility. When potential customers search for businesses on Google, they use keywords to find what they are looking for.
Make sure that you use relevant keywords in your Google My Business profile. This will help your business to appear in the search results when potential customers search for businesses using those keywords.
4. Add Photos and Videos
Adding photos and videos to your Google My Business profile can help attract more potential customers. When potential customers search for businesses on Google, they are more likely to click on businesses that have high-quality photos and videos.
Make sure that you upload high-quality photos and videos that accurately represent your business. You can add photos of your products, services, team, and location. Adding photos of yourself and your team is a great way to break the ice and seem more approachable to potential customers. If you are a service-based business, add before/after photos to show off the quality of work you provide.
5. Encourage Reviews
Encouraging your customers to leave reviews on your Google My Business profile can help improve your online visibility and attract more potential customers. Reviews are an essential part of Google’s ranking algorithm, and businesses with more positive reviews tend to rank higher in the search results.
Make sure that you ask your customers to leave reviews on your Google My Business profile after a sale. It is best to do it soon after a sale so it is still fresh in their head and more likely to leave a positive review. You can also respond to their reviews to show that you value their feedback and appreciate their business. If you get a negative review, respond to it, own up to any mistakes, and be nice. Don’t blame others, give excuses, or deflect responsibility, it is not a good look. This will all be visible for everyone to read so leave review readers with a good impression of how you handle customer service issues.
6. Post Regularly
Posting regular updates on your Google My Business profile can help keep your profile fresh and engaging. When you post updates, your followers will receive notifications, and they are more likely to engage with your content. Consistency helps with your SEO too.
Make sure that you post relevant updates, such as new products or services, promotions, events, or blog posts. You can also use Google My Business to share photos and videos of your business.
7. Use Google Posts
Google Posts is a feature that allows you to create short posts about your business that appear in the search results. You can use Google Posts to promote your products, services, events, and blog posts.
Make sure that you use Google Posts regularly to keep your profile fresh and engaging. You can also use Google Posts to highlight customer reviews or share updates about your business.
If you have a separate blog or make regular posts on social media sites, you can save a ton of time by recycling that same content and posting the same thing on GMB.
8. Check Out Your Performance Analytics
Review your GMB profile’s performance by clicking on the Performance tab. Here you’ll see stats on your clicks, calls, messages, bookings, and directions to your business that originated from your GMB profile. You can break down this information by using any date range too. This data should help you see how the GMB profile is helping your business so you can analyze what is working and what isn’t.
Get Started on it Right Now
Google My Business is an essential tool for local businesses that want to improve their online visibility and attract more potential customers. By following the tips outlined in this article, you can optimize your Google My Business profile to get more traffic to your website. It is free so you have nothing to lose and everything to gain.
Make sure that you complete your profile, choose the right category, use relevant keywords, add photos and videos, encourage reviews, post regularly, and use Google Posts. With a well-optimized Google My Business profile, you can attract more potential customers and grow your business.
If you need help getting started or maintaining your GMB profile, please contact me so I can get your business on the right track quickly.