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Google is still the king, queen, and jester of online search. Sure, Facebook and Amazon are trying to work out their own slice of the search cake, but as of July 2019, Google dominated over 90 percent of all search queries. When someone does a Google search for a product or service, they are showing intention and motivation. The beauty of intentional searches is that this traffic can be free. Paid keyword advertising works, but it's not the only way to get clicks and customers. Have you ever noticed that some companies and entrepreneurs are always just below the paid ads on Google Maps while others never show up? Those who do appear do four things better with their business profile than anyone else.
Before we get into the four specific tasks, it's important to know that unless you create a Google My Business (GMB) profile for each location, your business won't show up on Google Maps. Google the phrase "Google My Business" to find a direct link to set up your GMB profile. It's linked to your Google account.
Related: Want to Rank Higher on Google? Learn SEO Strategies from an Expert.
When setting up a brand new location, you choose between a service location and a physical location. A physical location is an actual office or retail space that people walk into, such as an office building. B. a doctor or law firm. Customers come to you. A service location is a location where you serve a neighborhood or city but have no office or retail space. Examples are a plumber, a broker, or an HVAC service technician. You go to the customer. In both cases, you'll need a mailing address so that Google can send you a postcard confirmation. You "claim" your offers and take responsibility for your online presence.
Using this basic sentence, let's walk through these four quick and easy ways to get your business to show up on Google Maps when people search for a local location (fill in the box) like yours.
1. Photos, photos and more photos
Have you ever looked at a business profile and wondered if the place is still in business? You can see when a company profile looks abandoned. The first dead giveaway is when the only photo for that business profile is the street view from Google Maps.
You need to upload relevant photos. This cannot be stressed enough. People eat and buy with their eyes. You don't have to hire a professional photographer. The cameras on most smartphones will suffice.
Take as many photos of your workplace as possible. Make sure to rename each photo to include the company name and content of the photo. When a file name is assigned to an image, it usually looks like this: "1074738img.jpg". Rename the Dans-Plumbing-Front-Of-Office-1234-Mockingbird-Lane-Anywhere-Ca-90210.jpg file. That way, you're correctly tagging the photo in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) guidelines, which in itself is a courtesy. It also helps Google easily understand what the photo is about, making it easier for the algorithm to deliver more accurate results.
Other photo ideas include customers, customers, products, groceries, and before and after. Remember, you can't have too many photos as long as they are relevant to your business.
Related: Most search traffic is organic. This tool will help you improve your SEO rankings.
2. Embed your Google Maps profile
Google loves when you use their tools. One of the fastest, easiest ways to send signals to Google that your GMB profile is receiving traffic is to use your website's existing traffic. Embed the little google map on your website. Every time someone visits your website they accidentally show the Google embedded property. Google picks this up even if they don't click on the map.
Find your business on Google Maps. When you find it, click the Share option and choose Embed Card. Copy and paste this code and place it on your website the same way you would embed a YouTube video.
The more clicks your profile receives, the higher and more often Google delivers it as a search engine result in Google Maps. The more reviews you have, the more likely it is that people will click on your profile. This is known as social proof.
You have to be good at soliciting reviews from your clients, clients, clients, friends and family. Getting reviews is an art form. You get better the more you do it. Don't be surprised or even offended if you have to ask someone for a review or testimonial more than once. Studies show that you are more likely to get a rating after a customer experiences a "high". This usually happens after a purchase or a good meal. It is at these moments that you and your team should request a review.
See Also: 6 Tips For Earning More Google Reviews (And Why They Are Important)
4. Accurate information
Make sure your business phone number, website, and hours of operation are up to date. Use a guest browser and test the links to the phone and website. Are you accurate? Are you working as intended? Is the right person's phone ringing? Does the website link to the home page or correct the product or service? These are all things that you should test. It's about the customer experience. The longer you keep the customer in your GMB profile, the more valuable you are in the eyes of Google.
Google wants to deliver the best and most relevant search results to the consumer. They have a universe of tools and online signals that they can use to determine which search engine results to serve. The more competitive your business area, the more complete and professional your GMB profile needs to be. If your company profile is incomplete, contains inaccurate information, and doesn't include photos of your company or photos of you at work, you will likely not be showing up.
Use these four quick tips to freshen up your Google My Business and Google Maps profiles so you get more exposure. Let me know how these free, simple tips have helped your business!