Leveling The Playing Field
The New Google Business Profile

In this post we take a look at the Google Business Profile, assess the recent changes Google has made to its local SEO platform and deliver some useful tips for getting the most out of this free resource.

How RECENT changes TO GOOGLE BUSINESS affect LOCAL SEO

 

Read on to learn about the update, how it impacts every business and what you can do right now to help more local customers find you on the web – at exactly the moment they’re searching for the products or services you provide!

As of November 9th 2021, Google implemented numerous changes to its Google Business Profile (GBP), formerly known as the Google Business Page. Here’s a quick recap of what’s new;

1. Rebranding – The name has changed, but the impact from this is minimal.
2. Reviews – Google has expanded its Review attributes to include more categories
3. More hours – You can now tailor your business opening hours to suit specific services such as; Delivery, drive-thru, pick up etc
4. Products – Google has made cosmetic changes to how products look on GBP
5. Attributes – Attributes has now been expanded to include more options such as offering and planning

 

How To Optimise Your Google Business Profile

Once you have created your Google Business Profile, optimising your page is key. Here we will delve further into ways you can improve your Google Business Profile.

  • Complete all required sections – It seems simple, and can easily be missed. But the main reason it’s so important to fill out all available sections is it artificially increases the ranking in Google for your page. The more accurate information, the better.
  • Make contact information clear and accurate – It goes without saying, but making sure the information is clear and accurate is extremely important. You can also easily update your information at any time.
  • Select primary and secondary categories – Google has expanded its business categories. Use the search facility to find yours.
  • Add photos and videos – Simple and extremely effective. Adding images with relevant descriptions has an excellent impact on how Google views your profile. Google will also automatically place the images in their search engine.
  • Collect and respond to reviews – It’s now easier than ever to request and respond to reviews. Don’t be afraid to ask customers to leave you a review and use a link in follow-up emails, invoices and docs.
  • Add your products and/or services – Be as descriptive as you can, listing as many as you can. This is a great way to get potential buyers’ eyes on your offerings.
  • Set up messaging – You’ll be prompted during set up to add messaging to your profile, use the method you prefer customers to contact you by.
  • Don’t forget to ‘Publish’ your page! An easy mistake to make. Once your profile is complete, be sure to hit the blue ‘Publish’ button in the top right corner
local seo google business profile

 Why use Google Business Profile?

 

Aside from the fact almost half of all Google searches are made by people looking for a local service provider or retailer, or that more than 60% of consumers now use Google local search services, here are 5 reasons why every company should maintain its Business Profile;

1. Your business will get more website traffic
2. GMB is likely the first thing your customers will see when they search for your products or services online
3. Practical and easy to manage
4. Builds trust in your business
5. Helps you learn who and where your customers are

Value for Local SEO

Posts are an excellent way to enhance your company’s SEO. Posts on your page can include a ‘call to action’ prompt, organically driving even more users directly to your website.

The flexibility of Google Business Profile makes it suitable for just about any kind of business too. The flexibility now goes way beyond just the written posts you can create, enabling complete control over what content you want to put out there. Google itself will ask what it is you want to achieve with your profile as you set it up, tailoring a bespoke free website to your specific needs.

The importance of a well-maintained Google Business Profile for local businesses can not be overstated. When you are targeting a local demographic it goes without saying that it is vital local customers have all the information they need to find your business.

Optimising your profile

Once you’ve created your profile, the work has just started when it comes to gaining traction and web traffic. It is useful to include as much information as possible. When people have done their search and found your business in the search results, their next step will be to click on your business to find out more information, such as contact details and your location.

Activity is also important, Google will always prioritise pages with more activity. So; posts, images, videos and your latest news are all vital to signal to Google your page is active. Google loves nothing more than activity, keep your page fresh, accurate and interactive and you will be rewarded.

Why is it important?

Having a strong Google presence is vital to your business. Without one, you are putting yourself at an extreme disadvantage. Being found and attracting potential customers is the hardest part for any business. You need customers to find your site, know the company address (if applicable) and have your contact information easily available.

There is no negative whatsoever for having a Google Business Profile. It may seem irrelevant, but your business will appear far more legitimate and professional with an accurate and updated profile. From the perspective of the consumer, most are infinitely more likely to use a business after finding it in search results.

How can I get my business to rank higher in searches?

Once your page is all set up and verified, it’s important to remain active. Posts, photos, videos and reviews are ideal ways for your page to display activity. Photos particularly are an excellent way to gain traction on Google, relevant photos with keywords in the title and description are an effective method to optimise your profile.

The brilliance of a Google Business Profile is that it is tailored to the type of business you own. For example, if you own a hotel. You can implement your star rating along with customer reviews and a booking facility. If you’re a food business you can tailor your hours to include delivery and pick up times and if you’re a service provider it’s possible to detail exactly the areas you cover.

Key Takeaway

So now you know the importance of not just having a presence, but having an optimized and accurate Google Business Profile. What are you waiting for? Get stuck in and elevate your business to the next level. Stay on point against your competitors and enhance your reach to potential customers.

Need help? Our Local SEO packages place your Business Profile front and centre, but we go a lot deeper than simply optimising your company’s business page. For more information about putting your business on the map, fill out the form below, or get started with a FREE SEO audit of your website today.

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