As a local business, getting your website or pages to compete with international-scale brands is difficult. Luckily, you don't always have to go toe-to-toe with bigger names. After all, if the business you run is smaller, you only need to be found by the people who live in your vicinity. That is why building a Google My Business page is crucial to receiving customers—but optimizing the page is essential to increase website traffic.
Once you have registered your business on Google My Business, you can then use these 5 ways to optimize:
Relevant, Specific Categories
The category that you list your business is integral to having an optimized Google My Business page, because Google will use it to help people find your listing. You can't create your own category, so if you can't find one that accurately describes your business, choose a more general category that still is correct.
For example, you might be running an Digital Marketing Company. One option you might find might be “seo agencies,” or something that fits the inventory you have, like “Canadian Seo companies.” Choose the one that is closest to what you have.
Verify Your Google My Business Listing
Once you have submitted business information and selected your service area, you must verify your listing. Forgetting to do this important step means that your business will be invisible. The easiest way to verify is mail. Doing so means that Google knows the address you provided for your business address does indeed exist and that you can receive actual mail there.
Remember: no verification means no listing and no access to analytics, so get to it!
Just like any traditional website, your Google My Business page can also utilize the power of SEO keywords. You will want to include important words and phrases that people might use to search for your site or store by name or category. Plus, since your website will be listed directly within the GMB listing, this will help drive traffic to your website as well.
Similar to your actual website, you are going to want to include high-resolution, professional shots of your business. Photos help businesses perform better, because people are more likely to click on a place that has such representation over another business with zero available pictures. In fact, businesses with photos receive 42 percent more requests for driving directions of Google Maps and 35 percent more clicks!
You may also want to hire a Google approved photographer to receive a 360-view of your business.
Monitor Your Insights
Over the past couple of years, Google has been working hard to increase the productivity of Google My Business pages and the analytical data provided. Recently added is something called “insights,” which are a unique way for businesses and customers to interact and understand one another through:
Learning how and where customers find your business listing – such as total, direct, and discovery searches
Customer behaviors – visiting website, viewing photos, calling
Direction requests (via Google Maps)
Phone calls and other contacts
In short, Insights give you the upper hand when it comes to understanding how and why people are selecting your business. You can stay ahead of the competition when you properly utilize this information to better optimize your website for SEO and other marketing campaigns.
Local SEO with Google My Business takes some time, but the payoff will be extraordinary. If you want more customers, then take the time to completely fill out your listing and monitor it well. This is a golden opportunity to make Google work for you!