Google My Business (GMB) is becoming more and more popular, and most business owners are now aware of the benefits they can get from it. However, the majority of business owners are not following Google My Business best practices.
This post would guide you in adopting Google My Business best practices so that your listing could get more clicks.
Creating (and Claiming) Your Google My Business Listing
Before I start talking about the Google My Business best practices, it appears that a good place to start is to talk about creating or claiming your listing. If you Google your business name and it does not appear in the Google’s knowledge panel, it means you (or no one – including Google, itself) has set up GMB for your business.
What you need to do next is to set up the listing, which only requires a Gmail account, or a Google account, or a G Suite account to get started. If, however, you Google your business and see it already listed, you need to get the login information.
In a case where Google automatically listed your business, there would be an option to claim the listing. Once you have created or claimed your listing, proceed with the following Google My Business best practices.
7 Google My Business Best Practices
- Make your business NAP the same as the one on your website and other listing services
NAP stands for Name, Address, and Phone number. It can be confusing for people when the NAP on your GMB listing is different from other listing services. They would rather choose your competitor who has consistent information. Therefore, it is a Google My Business best practice to maintain consistent NAP across all listing service and your website.
- Don’t go overboard with the categories
Google My Business allows you to select as many categories as possible. This doesn’t mean you should go overboard and select lots of categories, which might not be directly related to your business. The Google My Business best practice is that you should select a few categories.
For optimal results, you should select a Primary Category.
- Clearly state your service area
In the GMB dashboard settings, there is an option where you can state the area covered by your business. The option is available in radius and regions (s). For the radius, the best practice is for you to define the maximum distance (in miles or kilometres) you feel people are likely to come from to patronise your business.
If you are using the region(s), ensure to fill in the correct ZIP Codes, Postal Codes, Counties, States, Provinces, and Countries.
- Optimise your images
It is Google My Business best practice to add images to your listing – but make sure you add personal images (not stock images). Google recommends you make GMB images to represent reality; therefore, you should upload real-life images of your products, or services, or employees, or facilities.
Aside from images, you can add videos, too. Also, Google loves recent and fresh images and video being added to your GMB; therefore try as much as possible to upload fresh content regularly.
- Ask for reviews
GMB allows you to ask your customers to review your products and services. So, it is the best practice to ask happy customers to review you. After concluding a transaction, you could send an email to customers and ask them to review your business.
Your customers would need to have a Gmail or Google account before they can review your business. Therefore, encourage them to register for it if they are not currently using either of the accounts. To make reviewing your business easier, see this guide on how to create a direct review link that takes people to your GMB’s review page.
- Respond to both good and bad reviews
As you start encouraging people to review you, good (and bad) reviews would start coming in, and it is the time to start replying to the reviews. Google recommends that you should respond to reviews (good or bad) as quick as possible. If your GMB listing ends up getting bad reviews, the best practice is to address the issue raised by the reviewer constructively.
Most importantly, be professional and polite as you respond to your business reviews.
- Create regular Post
Last year, a new feature called Post was introduced to Google My Business. The feature helps drive more clicks on your listing; for this reason, it has become a Google My Business best practice to create Posts on your listing regularly.
On average, you should create a Post a week – as Posts (except event Posts) expire in seven days. By consistently creating a Post every week, you are positioned to maintain higher clicks on your listing. A Post can be linked to your website, external website or YouTube. However, to get the best from it, link Posts to your website.
Following Google My Business best practices might require extra work from you. However, when you look at how it would positively contribute to your listing and business, it is worth the effort. If you need a professional hand to you implement the Google My Business best practices and the overall local SEO for your business, see the offer.
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