Earlier, we had to search our phone books to call up the local businesses and place an order. Phonebooks are now passé! However, it would help if you were searchable by people in your locality. Increasingly we have moved online, and these days, we search for local businesses on search engines. So, what information does your customer search online?
They need to find your contact number to place an order.
They need to find your address if they want to visit your outlet.
While SEO maybe far-fetched, there is help nearby! Google My Business listing comes for free and provides valuable insights about you.
3 out of 4 shoppers search online to find a business… Customers are 50% more likely to purchase from entities with a complete listing.
--- Economic Times (India), Aug 01, 2018
So, to start with, you need to set up your account with all essential details business name, address, map location, areas served, business category along with contact details like your contact number and the website URL. Your Google My Business page is then almost ready.
You can improve your online presence across different search engines. So, how do you optimise your listing? The most critical amongst all factors is to claim your listing and complete it by entering all data about your business. Read on for some essential tips.
Ensure your customers understand about your business
Google My Business listing allows you to describe in detail about your business. The description will enable you to enter a maximum of 750 characters; so you need to be cautious what you enter. No repetitions, please!
You need to ensure the description is written meticulously as this will bring out your unique selling proposition (USP) that will separate you from your competitors. It should be well thought through and written precisely. Do a grammar check before submitting. You can hire the services of professionals to help you out. Over time, the description will also ensure you rank higher up during a search.
Improve the visual brand appeal
Images make up your brand imagery. Uploading great high-resolution photos go a long way in improving brand appeal for your business. Moreover, it helps to ensure more visits from your customers.
Businesses with photos receive 42% more requests for driving directions to their location from users on Google, and 35% more clicks through to their websites than those that don't have photos.
You need to enter pictures of anything that can represent your business to uplift your Google My Business page. While doing so, please consider the specifications laid down by Google.
Formats supported: JPG/ PNG
Duration: Maximum 30 seconds
Image size: Between 10 KB and 5 MB
File size: Less than 100 MB
Minimum resolution: 720 px tall, 720 px wide
Resolution: 720p or higher
You may please visit Google My Business Help for further details.
Collect customer feedback
Reviews go a long way in enhancing customer faith in a brand. Google My Business allows you to receive reviews from customers.
86% of consumers read reviews
Consumers read almost 10 online reviews before trusting a local business
--- Bright Local
More and more customers are looking for reviews from friends as well as anonymous ones before opting for the services. While you may request your customers for reviews, even ask for five-star reviews, Google has laid down specific guidelines. A simple way to encourage more discussions is to respond to them.
Attend to customer questions
Google My Business allows your potential customers to post a query about your business. You should ensure that you visit your account periodically visit your account and respond to any questions put up by your prospects. You can be proactive and put up a section on FAQs. It would help if you were far-sighted about the queries that may arise in the minds of your prospects. Be creative; you may hire professionals to help you with this section.
Interact with your customers periodically
Google My Business allows you to create posts that enable you to interact with your customers regularly. You may reach out with the latest happenings or any new festive offers. The posts can be of 300 words and can even include a photo. You can now easily reach out to your target market free of cost.
The critical issue faced by business is being ready online to receive their customers. While a larger company can easily hire consultants to help them in their quest to increase online presence; smaller businesses need to be prudent. Your Google My Business page enables you to create an online presence and improves your credibility before your target market. You will only need to be crazy if you are opting out.