The importance of Google Business listings cannot be overstated. According to recent studies, 46% of all Google searches have local intent, meaning that users are actively looking for local businesses. Furthermore, 76% of people who conduct a local search on their smartphone visit a physical store within 24 hours. You want to make sure you’re capturing these customers!
Another critical aspect of Google Business Listings is that many consumers consider these listings to be the source of truth. This assumption means that customers are not likely to confirm the information posted and incorrect information can lead to poor customer experience before they even walk into your business.
How to Claim your Google Business Listing
- Go to https://www.google.com/business/ and walk through the process of verifying your business profile. You can create a new one or claim an existing profile if one was already created for your business.
- If you have multiple locations, you will need to create separate business listings for each location – but you can have them all managed in one Google Business Profile.
Optimize your Google Business Listing
- Fill out all the relevant fields in your Google Business profile. Make sure you include keywords and your services in the description section.
- Add your business hours, even if they are the same every day. And make sure you include any special hours where you may be open later or close early. Ensuring your holiday hours are accurate is really important to ensure your customers know if you’re open or closed. They will assume Google is correct – make sure that it is!
- Add products and services in these sections. This is a great space to showcase your offerings to potential customers, and also gives Google more information about your business. This helps Google know when to offer your listing in search results.
- Add photos! Make sure you add a logo and a cover photo that showcases your business. You also want to add additional photos that demonstrate your space, your products, or what customers can expect. A visual listing is always better than one with default images.
- Request online reviews. A recent survey found that 90% of customers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. Online reviews are front and center of your Google Business listings so it’s important to keep review requesting in mind when talking with customers and clients.
- Post updates frequently. If you’re already posting updates to social media, post them to your Google Business profile at the same time. Social Pilot is an inexpensive social media scheduler that allows you to cross post your Facebook updates to Google Business without any extra steps. This provides fresh, keyword rich content for Google to index and learn more about your business.
Finally, make sure you keep your listing updated. Ensure you are checking your hours of operation regularly and adding photos and updates. All this information is indexed by Google and helps to provide customers with the most accurate information about your business.