Google My BusinessOptimize your account and drive customers engagement and sales
According to the Local Marketing Institute only 44% of local retailers have claimed their Google My Business listing. Which is surprising if you look at Googles statistics that 88% of the people who conduct a local search on their smartphone visit a related store within a week. Since you ended up reading this article, we are confident that you are already one step ahead and read why GMB is crucial also for SMB and how you achieve to end up on the deciding page one.
So, you made it. Your business is ranked high enough to get seen. You work on accurate and comprehensive information, update your content frequently with the keywords to feed the SEO Google is pulling, you post high quality pictures which are named according to the recommendations for Googles algorithms to work and Google Analytics shows somewhat more traffic on your website. What’s next? How can you leverage GMB to increase sales and improve customer loyalty?
Boost customer engagement & gain insights
Claiming your business on Google is one of the easiest ways to reach new customers. Follow some certain rules to improve your ranking is even better. Make sure to follow some additional best practices in order to get the best out of your listing.
1. User generated content: You have uploaded appealing profile, cover and product photo, maybe even videos? You are praising yourself in your website content stuffed with the right keywords? Great, but not very meaningful. Let’s not stop there. Feature user generated content. It is much more credible than anything provided from the owner of a business. One of your customers posted a great pic of your new decorated store window? Use it temporarily as your profile picture by selecting it under the “photo tagged of your business” option. Motivate your customers to add photos of their interactions. Since almost everyone nowadays is sharing places, actions, interactions with the online world a plentiful gallery of user-generated content will not take long. Encourage your customers to not only take pictures about the experience with you but write about them too.
2. Reviews and responses: Reviews are not only vital for the credibility towards your customers. Everybody likes a second or third opinion from persons which are most probably like-minded, but they also crucially influence your visibility and therefore the ranking on Googles SERP. Each review needs to be answered to show your customers and prospects that you take their opinion seriously and that you acknowledge the experiences your customers had with you and your shop.
“It is very simple: Good reviews equals sales. More good reviews equal more sales. Even bad reviews can boost your visibility and authenticity and if you handle them correctly you can turn them into sales as well. I cannot repeat myself more often when it comes to the importance of online reviews for local businesses. Reviews help you to convert brand loyalty into revenue.” Markus Demirci, founder and CEO of mPocket.
Reviews on Google are not only important for your priority in algorithm, but also help drawing your potential customers attention and trust quickly. Reaching out to your customers to collect these reviews can be done easily and quickly over automized tools .
3. Enable direct messaging and answer questions: Interaction is more than just receiving and responding to reviews. GMB allows you to answer questions which are publicly shown or direct messaging with your customers. Although you have your phone number stated, if you filled in correctly your GMB profile, 90% of business leads would rather receive a text message than a phone call and direct messaging has a higher conversion rate than mobile advertising. Use these opportunities to engage with customers on a 1:1 base, increase loyalty and your sales.
4. Publish posts to share updates: Posts are mainly known from social media platforms such as Facebook, but you can do so also on your business profile. Sharing your news are a great way to engage with your customers and to stand out from another listing. Included photos are even more eye-grabbing: they have a 650% higher engagement rate than text-only posts. Beside photos you can spice up your posts also with GIFs or call-to-actions buttons such as “sign up” or “learn more”. The newest feature is to add emojis to posts, since Google began to index emoji search results. So, if you are selling mobile phones or serve burgers, add emojis accordingly.
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5. Track customer paths and gain insights: The better you know your target audience, the better you can focus on their needs. Therefore, a measurement of the impact of your Google listing is important. How does GMB help you? The platform delivers you analytics about the queries your (potential) customers are using to find your business profile (direct vs. discovery searches), where they found you (Google Maps or Search). You can see a breakdown of actions taken on your listing (visiting your website, browsing the gallery, calling you etc.), areas your customers are coming from based on direction queries, total phone calls and how your photos are performing compared to other profiles in the same category. All these information can provide an understanding of your customers actions and improve your efforts regarding your listing further.
“The algorithm works in a way that regular updated and accurate information as well as uploads of photos and publishing posts, plus a steady stream of reviews and the responses to them is signaling Google that you are active and pushes your listing up. Local targeting is important in particular for small businesses.” Markus Demirci, founder and CEO of mPocket.
If you have a SMB – think no further. Google My Business is an excellent opportunity for brands to put themselves literally on the map. It helps with local SEO, provides a chance to engage with customers and provides useful insights. With all the above advice, your GMB will convert visitors into customers, drive organic traffic to your website and increase your local visibility.
Get started with Google MyBusiness today. If you need help with setting up or optimizing your GMB we are glad to help. It might seem overwhelming at the beginning to set up and maintain also a Google My Business account beside all other ones, but we can offer an integrated solution with mPocket which keeps things simple.
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Marketing & Communication Manager mPocket
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