Previously known as Google My Business (GMB), Google Business Profile (GBP) is a must-have for any business looking to gain from local searches. Having a GBP is the first step toward a successful local SEO strategy.
A third of all Google searches have local intent and will be redirected to websites with a GBP listing. Thus, optimising your Google business profile may take some time, but it’s all worth the effort.
What is Google Business Profile?
A GBP listing is a free tool by Google that allows you to manage how your business appears on Google searches and Maps. Your account should display the following details:
- Your business name
- Hours of operation
- Services or products your business offers
- Social media profiles
How Do I Optimise My Google Business Profile?
You will need to set up a Google Business Profile for you business if you haven’t. Here’s a guide to assist you with setting up your GBP. Customers will look for online reviews when seeking the services of a local provider. Here is a guide on things you can do to optimise your GBP.
Include keywords in your GBP
Just like you use relevant keywords on your website, so should you on your Google Business Profile. The best keywords to use are those that include your services, location, and distance. Since your homepage is also linked to your GBP account, ensure that the homepage is also well-optimised using relevant keywords.
Consider your Prominence
Prominence is how popular your business is to people. Google will consider your business’s popularity by considering social media mentions, backlinks, and reviews. Although most businesses don’t see the need to have social media accounts, it’s one of the most inexpensive ways to gain online credibility.
Having a social media page, many followers, and positive reviews will infer that your business is credible. While creating social media pages, ensure to use the same name as your website and link to your website. You want to ensure that your business name matches across all platforms.
Another tip that could increase your online popularity and credibility is positive Google reviews. Encourage every customer you serve to leave you a review through follow-up emails.
Fill out Contact Information Correctly
You want to ensure that all your business information matches – your phone numbers, address, and business names across all platforms. While including keywords on your business name in Google Business Profile could be tempting, it will do more harm than good. Leave your name as it appears on your website without adding links or additional keywords.
Optimise your Business Description
Google allows you to use about 750 characters to describe your business. However, if the user has limited display space, such as when on a mobile device, only the first 250 characters will appear. Therefore, you need to write a strong description of your business within 250 characters that can stand independently. You should also write up to 750 characters, further detailing everything about your business.
Within this description, use well-researched keywords that will help you gain online visibility and traction. It’s also important to note that you shouldn’t use offensive or salesy language in your description. The best way to create a killer business description is to highlight the best selling points for your products or services.
If you aren’t sure how to do this, check out how your competitors are writing their descriptions. Try to write something better than what they have if you want to stand out.
Add some Photos
Google will reward businesses that use images in their GBP with more clicks and enquiries. You should use high-quality images and videos on your profile to attract potential customers. Using photos and videos will infer that your business is real.
Your images and videos don’t have to be professionally done. You can take them yourself as long as they meet the following requirements.
- 720 pixels wide by 720 pixels tall
- Use a JPG or PNG format
- No larger than 5MB in size
The first type of photo you need for your GBP listing is a cover photo. This photo is crucial because it’s what customers see when they search for your services and appears on your thumbnails. You want to ensure they want to click on your business profile when they see your image.
Next, you need a profile photo that appears on your avatar and will display whenever you reply to a customer’s comment or review. These could be images of your business premises, your team, best-selling products, or customers enjoying a service or product.
When uploading videos to your listing, ensure that the videos are a maximum of 30 seconds long and no larger than 100 MB in size. Moreover, the videos should have a resolution of 720p or higher.
Reply to the Reviews
Whenever your profile gets a new review, ensure that you reply regardless of whether it’s positive or negative. If a customer leaves a positive review, thank them and tell them you look forward to serving them again.
If your business receives a negative review from an angry or dissatisfied customer, apologise to them without trying to justify anything. Then ask them to give details about the services they received in your store and promise them that you will follow up and get back to them.
Replying to positive and negative reviews assures your customers that you care about them and are open to receiving their complaints and doing something about it.
Optimise the Q&A Section
The Google Buisness Profile listing has a section where customers can ask a question. You want to ensure that you optimise the Q&A section by answering the frequently asked questions in a detailed way.
Update your Posts Regularly
A Google Business Profile account is similar to any social media account, and you can update your posts. Posts can be about anything from new product launches, promotions, offers, events, etc. Your posts will appear under the updates section of your GBP account and should include a short snippet explaining what the post is about.
Remaining active on your GBP listing shows customers that you’re real and available if they need any help or clarification.
Optimise Your GBP for Better Online Visibility
Setting up your Google Business Profile is a great way to increase your local rankings, local searches, foot traffic, and visibility on Google Maps. Fully optimising your GBP listing can be time-consuming, and that’s where we come in. We can help you create and optimize a GBP profile for you as part of our local SEO strategies. Get in touch!