If you’re running a local shop or provide services in local areas then your first intention might be to attract more local customers and to promote your business. GMB(Google my Business) can help you to attract more potential customers to your local shop. For that, you need to set up your online presence on the GMB listing correctly.
Before listing your local business in GMB take a look at important points of Google local search statics 2019
- 97% searched online to find a local business
- 70% of customers visit a store based on information found online.
- More than 50% of ‘near me’ searches result in a store visit.
These show the benefits of taking your business online! Only listing your business on GMB is not enough you also need to optimize it for the local SEO perspective. Here are the step-by-step guide is given for listing and optimizing your business on GMB.
Open an account on GMBTo manage your GMB account you need a Gmail id and it is preferable to have a separate id only for business purposes. This will help to catch your attention on any updates and notifications from Google My Business! Now visit Google My Business site. Select the manage now option.
This will leads you to the next step of finding and adding your business. Search your business name with address if your business is already appearing then click on it and select manage now. And if you can’t find your business then simply select Add your business to Google.
There are a few steps to add your business to Google. First, type your business name
Next, select the business category, if you can’t find the exact category select the related category. You can also search for your competitor’s shop and find out what category they had selected.
After that, if you want your customers to visit your office or shop then select Yes and add the address, and if not then select No.
Next, add the service areas where you serve your customers, for example, providing home delivery or other services. These areas show up on your listing and help you to bring relevant customers. This is an optional step if you don’t provide services in different areas then simply go to the next step.
Now provide your contact details through which your customers can reach you. Like your contact number and your website. The good thing is that if you don’t have a website and want to create one then Google provides this service for free. Google will automatically create a simple website based on your business info.
Then in last, to fully manage and represent your business on Google, you need to select a method to verify your business. Depending on the type of business there are various methods available to verify your business on Google. Most local businesses verify by mail(Postcard method). Some businesses like service area businesses, have other options like verify by email, phone, or search console.
If your business shows only verify by postcard method then you need to provide your contact name and select mail. It will show you the approximate arrival days. After you received your postcard go to the pending verification and select ‘Enter verification code’ Now enter the 5-digit verification code and vary your Business.
Optimize your GMB profile Congratulations! you’ve listed your business on Google successfully! Now it’s time to optimize your online store. The below image shows the dashboard of a GMB user account.
On the right side corner, the main menu is located where several options are given. First, you need to add details about your business so select the info option. Now add hours it will help your customers to know when your store/office will be open and close. Well, you have already added your contact number but in case if you want to change it or want to add other contact numbers then you can add it. Do you know what mistakes most GMB owners do!? It is not adding the products to their online store. Adding products can help you to stand out in search results and to attract more customers. If your business sells physical products then do add them to your online store.
Select add products you can add the details like
- Product’s photo
- Product name and category
- Product price: fixed price or price range
- Product description like its weight, benefits, specialty, how to use it, etc.
- Add a Button like Order online, Buy, Learn more, or Get the offer and link it to your site URL.
In the same way, you can add multiple products in the same category or add products of different categories. If you’re running a service-providing business then you can add another service or can add another service category in services.
The next step is adding attributes to highlights and service options. Attributes let customers know what your business has to offer, like Wi-Fi availability, outdoor seating, women-led, delivery, dive-in, etc.
Attributes appear in the business profile. And when customers find your business on mobile some attributes can be highlighted as badges! You can learn more about add or edit attributes here.
Most important add a business description. Describe what your business is about, what products or services you provide, and what makes your business unique. Mention your business name and include the keyword related to your business in the description.
You can also add the opening date of your business. Well done! you provided the complete information and set up your online store. Now if you want to create a website for your online business for free then select the website option to get started.
As your website will be designed by Google for free, you can only modify a few things. Like you can change the theme of your website, edit the button actions, edit text like header and description. You can also change the site language to do this, click on more select site language. After finishing your edits to make your site live, click on publish.
A typical Google business site has the following information on it.
- Business name on the top right corner
- Header and description
- Header image
- 2 or 3 CTA(Call To Action) buttons
- Customer reviews and About you
- Map view of your store/office location
- Address and Business hours
Tips for getting customers through GMB
- Keep your customers updated:
Make posts about the changes and updates of your business for different events like recent COVID-19 updates, special holidays, special events, etc.
- Attract more customers by creating the Offer post. Add special hours or events. All these updates will be visible on search results as well as on your business site.
- Remember that Google uses texts on your site to rank your business in search results. I.e. texts included in the header title and its description and summary header and its body texts. That’s why while writing it keep in mind to include your business-related keywords and especially include the service area.
- Add photos:
Upload photos of your business logo, cover photo, interior, exterior, team, and at work. Your logo displays when you post updates, pictures, or answer your customer’s review. Your cover photo should show the personality of your business. It is your preferred photo to be shown on your listing in search and maps.
- Share your business site on your social accounts and with friends. Ask your customers to give their feedback. And don’t forget to reply to your customer’s review this will encourage other customers to write a review. More positive reviews help your business to rank higher in search and map.
- Also, add your business to other local online business directories.
- Promote it with Google ads.
Nowadays before visiting any shop or buying products people use to search online to collect more information about it. Google My Business is a powerful tool to attract more customers to your store/office.
The best thing about it is that it’s free and also it allows you to create a free business site. But only listing your business on GMB doesn’t help you that much! You need to create a perfect business profile and optimize your store to rank higher in search and map.
Here I shared the step-by-step guide to listing your business on GMB. I hope this guide will be helpful to you. Please do share this with others who want to create or optimize their GMB profile. Thank you!