Raise Your Brand Profile with Google

If you’re looking to raise your brand’s profile among local customers, a strong local SEO strategy is a must – and there’s no better place to start than with Google My Business.

A free, easy-to-use tool allowing you to set up a detailed online profile for your business, Google My Business is one of the pillars of off-site local SEO, letting you leverage the power of the world’s largest search engine to boost your brand’s visibility and burnish its credibility. If you still haven’t claimed and optimized your listing, now is the perfect time to get started – so, let’s take a minute to walk through the basics.

Your first step is to check and see if there’s already a Google My Business profile for your business – since any Google user can create a listing, it’s entirely possible that someone has already made one! If this is the case, it’s crucial that you take charge and verify the listing.

If a listing doesn’t already exist, you’ll have to create one. This starts with supplying some basic information about your business, including:

– Business Name
– Address or Service Area
– Phone Number
– Hours of Operation
– Website URL

You’ll also be asked to define your business’ primary category along with any secondary categories that may be applicable, and you’ll have the opportunity to highlight attributes that might interest your customers. And don’t forget to upload your logo!

Now, it’s time to make the most of your verified Google My Business listing. Let’s look at a few features that can help take your profile to the next level:

Showcase your brand with high-impact photos.
This doesn’t affect search ranking, but it’s a key factor in conversion – according to Google’s own data, listings with photos get about 40% more requests for directions.

Upload a short, original video, up to 30 seconds in length.
It could be a quick FAQ, a virtual tour, or a look behind the scenes – or even a simple welcome message. Get creative and show off your brand’s personality.

Use Posts to engage with your audience and generate organic clicks.
Posts can serve as a sort of “micro-blog,” highlighting special offers, upcoming events, and more.

Be sure to opt in for email notifications about Questions and Answers.
This is a crowd-sourced feature, so it pays to be active and alert – if you don’t respond to questions yourself, someone else may do it for you!

With Web 2.0 hubs taking the place of dedicated review sites for many web users, Google has become a hot spot for customer reviews.
Take advantage of this by soliciting reviews from customers and responding to any that you receive.

The bottom line? Google My Business isn’t a “set it and forget it” platform – you’ve got to take initiative and maintain a presence. But, if you’re willing to put in a bit of time and energy, a fully optimized profile can be an indispensable asset to your brand’s marketing and SEO efforts.

Ready to step up your local SEO strategy? Contact us today; Your first consultation is always free!