Google My Business (GMB) is an effective way to gain traffic and customers for free. Unfortunately, this is no secret. As long as you’re not offering some very unique product or service, you’d mostly have at least some local competitors. Like you, they too might have already claimed their GMB listing.
So, while claiming your business on GMB is an excellent first step to get some local exposure, you need to optimize your listing in order to stand out from the competition. How do you do that? Here are 8 tips that can help you optimize your Google My Business listing-
1. Add Accurate, Complete, and Engaging Information
Google suggests that your GMB profile should be accurate, complete, and engaging. Start optimizing your business profile by accessing the Info tab in your GMB profile. You can find several different attributes in this section.
Update all the attributes, including service options, hours, etc., to ensure that the listing correctly reflects your operations. You can also add links and pictures to help the customers better understand your business.
2. Update Contact Information Carefully
Ensure that the business name you add to your GMB listing is the same as your store signage. Never use keywords or location names in the business name, as it could be considered spamming and might result in a penalty.
Also, make sure that your contact number and address exactly match your business listings throughout the web. If there are inconsistencies, Google will most probably track them, and this can affect your local ranking negatively.
3. Use Google Posts
If you want to make your GMB listing more engaging, Google Posts can be a great choice. You can use the posts for keeping the business listing current and promoting your latest offerings. They can also be used for sharing updates with customers.
As the content you add in the posts can impact search rankings, you can also consider adding relevant keywords wisely to improve your local ranking.
4. Encourage Customer Reviews
Review count and review score also impact local rankings. Higher review volume with a high score can help you rank better than your competitors. You can implement strategies to encourage your customers to leave a review for your business on Google.
For instance, if you are just starting with GMB optimization, you can consider offering some discount to the customers who write a review for your business.
5. Choose the Right Business Category
The business category is also a crucial component of your GMB listing as it helps you get found in discovery searches and highlight category-specific features of your business. Google offers a list of 2,000+ business categories to choose from.
Be very specific when choosing the business category. For instance, if you’re running a ‘nail salon,’ do not select just ‘salon.’
6. Track QnAs
There is also a QnA section for every business listing that cannot be turned off. Anyone can ask questions about your business, and anyone can answer them. As the answers can impact a customer’s decision of whether or not to deal with your business, it’d be wise to closely track the QnAs.
In the Settings panel of your GMB account, you can turn on notifications for questions and answers posted on your business profile. You can also create your QnA section with frequently asked questions. Use keywords wisely when writing the questions and answers to improve your ranking for the keyword.
7. Write Hyperlocal Website Content
Your website’s SEO also impacts the ranking of your GMB listing. To improve your local search engine rankings and boost your GMB ranking in the process, consider writing hyperlocal website content.
The posts can be dedicated to nearby places or things that can be done in the neighbourhood. Follow the best SEO practices while writing these content pieces for the best results.
8. Work on the Core Web Vitals
The recent algorithm update by Google has made the Core Web Vitals a crucial ranking factor. These are made up of three factors, largest contentful paint, cumulative layout shift, and first input delay, related to page speed and user interaction-.
You can visit this Google page to generate your free Core Web Vitals report. View the report and work on factors that are negatively affecting the website vitals to improve your ranking.
Succeed Locally with GMB Optimization
Claiming your business on GMB is only the first step to improving your local business ranking. GMB optimization is the key to making your business rank higher, preferably above your top competitors, in local search results.
Businesses can also consider hiring a reputed digital marketing company to help them optimize their business listing on Google and rank higher even in competitive markets. As experts better understand the SEO landscape, they can provide your business listing an edge over others.