What is Google My Business?
Simply put, Google My Business is a platform that allows you to host a Business Profile containing information such as your business’s phone number, physical address, hours of operation, etc. It allows you to show up in local searches and it provides this for free.
How does Google My Business Support Local Marketing?
Google My Business is Powerful For Local Businesses
Google My Business is an incredibly powerful marketing tool – especially for brick-and-mortar, local, small- and medium-sized businesses.
You see, Google has reported that 46% of all searches have, what they call, local intent. Meaning that in those searches individuals are looking for something close to home; or another specific geographic area.
Now, it’s possible that your business already exists on Google. See, the all it takes to add a business is to locate it on a map and click “Add”, which anyone can do. That will allow people to check-in there, to leave reviews, to post photos, etc. but that does not give you ownership of that business profile, nor control over how the business looks.
In short, not having a Google My Business profile prevents you from benefiting from the powerful marketing benefits that it provides.
The Power of Online Reviews
If you’ve followed local online marketing trends, you know how important it is to maintain a strong, positive online reputation. Perhaps the most powerful element of Google My Business is that it provides you with insight into your reviews, and allows you to perform Online Customer Service as your business.
Google My Business and Google Maps
After Online Reviews, showing up in Google Maps is one of the easiest and most effective ways to reach potential customers. You may show up in Google Maps regardless of your Business Profile, but having an accurate, fleshed-out Business Profile – with accurate contact information and operating hours – is a simple way to stand out in a crowd.
Google Gives Preference to Your Business
Having a complete Business Profile also allows you to show up in your local business 3-pack. And it gives preference to your business in local searches.
What’s the local business 3-pack? It’s the grouping of 3 or 4 local business results that display when a local search is performed.
It Allows You To Engage with Clients
Google allows several ways for you to interact with your customers via Google My Business. It allows you to publish posts to your profile – almost like Social Media platforms. It allows you to respond to reviews, utilize direct messaging, answer questions, and even set up communication alerts.
The last benefit we’re going to touch on here is the marketing insights that you can retrieve. These insights include information on your audience. Also information on your local search performance, and how many “clicks” your business is getting month over month.
It also includes invaluable information such as how users found your profile. It shows the actions users took on it, and how your posts and photos are performing. It uses that performance and compares you to other business profiles in your category.
As a free and powerful marketing tool, a Google My Business profile is a necessity for any locally operating business. It give you a slew of tools, benefits, and insights at your fingertips. And all that for the 5 – 10 minutes it will take you to set up and maintain.
At Epowet Digital Services, we highly recommend that our clients have a fully-fleshed out, accurate, and updated Google My Busines Profile. If that is something you need help with, please reach out to us! We are always happy to help.