Before we tell you why you need to use Google My Business, let’s start at the beginning. Firstly, what is Google My Business? Google My Business or GMB is a free and easy-to-use tool for businesses to manage their online presence across Google, including Google Search and Google Maps. It helps customers find your business and gives you the opportunity to tell them your story.
You can think of Google Search as the Yellow Pages of Google. When users search for your business on Google, your GMB block will pop up on the right-hand side of the search page. This block gives users valuable information about your business (if set up correctly). In your GMB block, users can also ask you questions under Q&A, view and add reviews, or find your map location using Google Maps.
Google Reviews and Q&A
Google Reviews allow your clients to share what they think of your business and give it a numerical ranking between 1 and 5 stars. Reviews are a great form of User Social Proof (When your current users recommend your products and services based on their experiences with your brand). Google will also pull some reviews from your other connected social platforms such as Facebook. Another cool feature in this section is that users are able to upload photos on your profile to share their experience.
The Q&A function allows users to ask your business questions. This is especially helpful for users when they need information on things that may not be found in you GMB block or your website.
Both reviews and questions give you as a business the opportunity to interact with users. Google Reviews is something you need to build into your marketing and sales strategy, where you are asking your clients to review you because it becomes very important. It helps your organic results when it comes to the way that you display in terms of how many reviews you got and how active you are on Google My Business.
Your Google My Business block has a directions tab where it is linked to Google Maps. It will take users to a page like this where they can find your local business, view it on maps, and get driving directions to you.
For most clients this is one of the main reasons for why they are even searching for you on Google, to find out where you are and how to get to you.
What information should you put on your Google My Business?
Google My Business is a place where you can represent your business the way you want it to be seen. It is very important to do this correctly. The more information you give Google, the better your organic SEO ranking will be.
When users type in your business on Google, you immediately want them to see valuable information about your business. Some critical details to have on your Google My Business profile include your address, telephone number, trading hours, directions, website, and social platform links.
Having correct and up to date business details is critical. Your customers rely on this information to be correct, there’s nothing more annoying than when you search for a business’s details, and something is incorrect on their Google My Business.
Benefits of Google My Business
One of the biggest benefits of Google My Business is the visibility that you get on a Google search. If you think about the real-estate the GMB block takes up on Google Search, it takes up the entire right-hand side of Google Search. Some other great benefits include:
Maintaining accurate information about your business online
You can manage your listing to ensure that there is always accurate information regarding your business available to your customers.
Interaction with customers
Through the review and Q&A functions, you can get a better understanding of how your customers feel about your product or service and you can respond to them. Both you and your customers can post photos of your products & services for others to view.
Attracting new customers
By listing your products on Google, you are creating more opportunities for your products to show up on Shop searches and you can then push people directly to your website.
Google has an amazing reporting functionality that’s both free and automated. It can tell you important stats such as how many people phoned you by clicking on the number or how many people looked at your map location.
The social aspect
Google is testing out making Google My Business into more of a social platform. You can now create posts on your profile, whether it be for promotions or specials. So, it is definitely starting to play in the social-type space. Google encourages you to regularly update your GMB profile. It is by no means a set-and-forget type of platform, and this posting function further prompts this behaviour.
Setting up your Google My Business account
Setting up your Google My Business account is easy. You can simply use this link to start setting up your business’s GMB profile.
Alternatively, if you Google your business name and a GMB listing pops up for your business on the right (that you didn’t create), don’t worry, this just means that Google has created an automatic listing for you. These show as un-verified. From here it is very simple to claim your business and verify it.
Google requires you to authenticate your business. This can either be done via email, phone call, video call, or postcard.
Google My Business is a very powerful tool. If anything, it is probably the most important thing that you can do for your business. Check out our previous blog to find out more about how Google works.
Now that you understand the importance of having your Google My Business set up correctly, what is the next step? Firstly, go search for your business on Google and check if you have an unverified GMB account that you can claim. Then you can start setting it up correctly and verify your business. It’s really easy to set up, you can do it yourself. But we can also help you set up your Google My Business correctly. So, chat to us if you want to level up your online presence.