Any business that has serious designs on building a fruitful future has some sort of presence on the Internet. They don't necessarily have to sell their goods online, either – brick and mortar firms understand that the online world can be used to advertise their location,contact details – even their products. They may deal solely in social media, pay for adverts through Google AdWords or make use of clever methods, such as search engine optimisation (SEO) to grab the attentions of an ever-growing consumer base.
Local SEO can be used to promote a business to dedicated audiences. Anyone new to online marketing can be forgiven in thinking that the web is designed for big, international firms to spread their metaphorical wings to sweep up all the customers they can. In fact, the opposite is true – Google My Business can help even the newest of firms to gain a foot hold in a local market, providing it with the means to compete against its established rivals.
Here, we're going to be taking a close look at what 'GMB' is, why it's important and how it can be of benefit to any business, regardless of their size or standing in their particular marketplace.
How Google My Business Helps With Local SEO
What is Google My Business?
Google My Business is a free service for business owners to use to manage their online presence throughout Google's multiple websites (including Google Search, Mobile Search, Local Search and Google Maps). GMB is a single console that allows users to create, check and edit their business listings in Google products, without requiring them to do any extra work on their website or implementing a fresh search engine optimisation strategy.
The service was developed to make it easier for searchers to find all the information they need quickly and easily. The address of the business, its opening hours, contact information and location will all appear in a GMB listing – it will not require the searcher to click through to an external website to find what they need. This makes the process quicker and more convenient for the searcher – being able to connect their users with the businesses and products they're looking for is Google's purview,after all.
Why Is It Important To Use Google's My Business?
With Google's business model being based around offering users high-quality information, if searchers don't find whatt hey need quickly and easily, they may turn to another search engine. This is why everything that Google innovates is done so for the searcher's convenience.
If searchers are just looking for an address, opening hours or a phone number, there is no need for them to click through to an external website to find what they need. These are details that can be provided in a Google My Business listing in less than a second.
Is them not clicking through to a website not counter-productive, though? It's easy to think that – but if users had to click-through to the site to find the information they need, it will take more time. With a My Business listing, they will have the information they need almost instantly. A GMB listing can be seen as a gateway to the website; armed with the knowledge they need, searchers may go on to click through to the website anyway to find out further information about the business and the products/services it offers.
The Benefits of A My Business Listing In Google.
If the business has a great local SEO strategy, their details will be displayed near the top of a search in a full GMB listing – this is known as a 'three-pack'. This refers to a feature that's shaped like a map and displays locations related to the search query – an accompanying 3-point list will contain a list of each business's NAP data (their names, addresses and phone/contact information).
Dependant on the type of query that abusiness is targeting, simply having a Google My Business page may be enough toget their details into the three-pack – but having good localised SEO will ensure that it gets (and stays) there. With three-packs appearing on top of the standard organic search results, having a presence within them can be vital.
There are plenty of other benefits that can be garnered from having a listing on Google My Business, including:
- Helps websites to rank better. GMB is essential for any business that is looking to take advantage of local SEO. It enables its listings to appear in local search results for queries that are specific to the products and services that are being searched for. Even long queries (with large search volumes) display local results in a three-pack – this is something that small business owners, especially, can capitalise on.
- Better control over business information. In its basic form, Google My Business places information about a business in Google's local search index. Apart from this, the service also offers a range of additional tools that can help to attract and inform searchers. As an example; a business may want to add information such as product lists, payment types, prices, menus and interactive features (such as photos, videos and reviews). Special offers and vouchers can also be included in an attempt to entice customers too.
- Manage, display and reply to reviews. One of the most important features of a GMB listing is the ability for a business's customers to leave reviews. Google actively 'recruits' their users to act as 'local guides' – rewarding them when they rate and review local firms. Obviously, having the ability to show off high-quality, positive reviews will improve the visibility of the business and increases the chances that a potential customer would be interested in its services.
- Study searcher behaviour. A My Business listing is a great way for businesses to learn more about their customer base through its inclusion of extra analytical data that cannot be found elsewhere. As an example; on Google Maps, information can be accessed on where requests for directions came from. If a significant number originates from a location that the business may not have been targeting previously, they can adjust their local SEO campaign to take advantage of a new market.
If you run your own business – whether it's based in a physical location or online – having a detailed Google My Business listing is simply the best way to get noticed in your local area. If you've not taken the time to create or optimise a GMB listing, you will be missing out on one of the best ways of appearing high in Google's search results.
Here at Promote, we can help you to createan online marketing campaign that will ensure your business will have a presence in Google My Business – why not consider getting in touch with us for an informal chat to learn more?
Promote Yourself – With Professional Search Engine Optimisation Services.
If you're interested in learning more about how SEO can help your business to gain a foothold in the competitive eCommerce market, why not get in touch with the experts? We have a proven track record here at Promote at helping all manner of business operations with their online marketing campaigns.
Regardless of the size of your business or the industry that you trade in, we study the existing eCommerce market and designan SEO plan that will help to push your website up a keyword search – often on to that all-important first page of Google.
For further information on local SEO and how we can help with your Google My Business listing, please don't hesitate to get in touch with a member of our team on 0845 050 2500. Alternatively, you can send an e-mail enquiry to firstname.lastname@example.org.