Through the years, there have been many iterations of what we call today your Google My Business listing, or GMB. What we now refer to as GMB has gone through changes from its early days starting as part of Google Maps, another facet of the Google account suite, and one that you could connect to your business’s Google Plus profile. When Google Plus was mainly a social media platform, Google Maps listings operated separately, and any SEO worth their salt in local optimization would recommend that you connect your Google Maps listing to your Google Plus and optimize both listings.
Well… as we all know, nothing lasts. Once Google realized that Google Plus was not, in fact, going to be the Facebook killer it had hoped, Google began the slow process of letting its social media pet project die. This in turn left Google business listings on Maps in a state of flux. To manage and fully optimize them, you had to connect the listings and verify the page through your Google Plus. This presented its own confusing set of challenges. But, as more and more searches were being performed on mobile devices and Google Maps was becoming more and more a platform that local businesses were being found on, the value of a Google Maps Business listing became more and more apparent.
Should Your Business Use GMB?
So, now that we know that GMB is its own entity and likely not going anywhere, the question remains… should I use it for my small business? In short: YES! From better visibility in the search results to being able to be found better on Google Maps, a GMB listing has many benefits for small businesses. Let’s explore these reasons for making sure you’ve claimed your GMB listing.
Show More Facets of Your Business
When set up and optimized properly, a GMB listing shows a large amount of information about your business. This is all information that can be customized by you, for free. Your GMB can show a variety of information about your business, including:
- Your photos
- Your address
- Your phone number
- Your website
- Directions to your business
- And, most importantly, reviews of your business!
That is a ton of powerful information that you can put directly in front of your potential clients for free!
These are all important elements of your business that potential customers can use to decide whether or not to patronize your business. Based on a BrightLocal study of information on reviews from 2017, 85% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations, and positive reviews make 73% of consumers trust a local business more. Couple that with reviews being considered a quality signal to Google that can help your site rank better organically, and the reviews feature of GMB alone makes using it a no-brainer!
Be Found in Multiple Areas of Search
A claimed and verified GMB listing allows your business to show up in more areas of search. Your page can be found in the Google Sidebar (Knowledge Panel) in local listings results, which is basically Google Maps information being pulled into the search results. Additionally, your business can appear with your listing directly on Google Maps. Being found for free in all of these prominent areas of search is a definite way to not only drive more traffic to your site, but also to drive more potentially converting customers to your business. When you consider that your listing also includes a link to your site, directions to your business and a click-to-call button on mobile, you can see why there are so many options for your business to be found better and in more areas of search.
Allow Potential Customers to Contact You More Easily
As we’ve discussed above, a properly optimized GMB listing gives links to your website, directions to your office and, most importantly, a click-to-call button. When you consider that approximately 60% of all searches are now done from a mobile device, this click-to-call button becomes invaluable.
Now let’s think about the intent of searches performed from a mobile device. People that are searching on a smartphone or tablet are often out and about and wanting to make a decision at that moment. If they don’t have an easy way to contact your business, they move on to the next one. Now, having that click to call in your GMB suddenly becomes critical!
Need Help With Your GMB? Page 1 Solutions Can help!
As I’ve shown, a properly optimized GMB listing is something every business should make sure they have. If you want to show up in more areas of search, have more aspects of your business available to consumers and make it easy for potential consumers to contact you, GMB helps provide all of those things, and the listing is free!
To properly set up and optimize a GMB listing, you need to know what information to include and how, which can take a good bit of time if you’ve never done it before. Page 1 regularly helps attorneys, doctors and dentists optimize and maintain their listings on Google My Business, and we can help you, too., If you’re stuck or need help, don’t hesitate to contact us by calling 800-368-9910.