You probably never realized how much attention you pay to that box on the right side of your screen or on phone’s screen that shows details about a business. It’s almost always there when you search for a product, service, or business. We have called that little box many names over the years. Google Business Listing, Google Maps, Google MapPack, Google My Business, and now it is known as Google Business Profile. This tool is one of the most powerful assets your business can own. It can bring a lot of customers to your business. Let me explain exactly why your business needs a Google Business Profile.
What’s Google Business Profile?
Google Business Profile is Google’s online search tool for businesses. It allows you to easily display your location, hours, website, and phone number and provide a map to your business. It also lets you post photos of your business, product, and services. You can collect and respond to customer reviews all in your Google profile.
Setting up your free GBP is as easy as visiting the site and filling in the blanks as Google prompts you to do so. You can do it in minutes if you have photos and basic information ready to go.
Because you set it all up, Google Business Profile lets you optimize information about your business with Google. It has huge value to your business since Google is the most popular search engine and is the most likely source to send organic traffic to your website.
Here’s what GBP looks like on a mobile device.
And here’s what it looks like on a desktop computer.
We can’t emphasize enough the value of GBP for your business. We encourage all of our clients to have a profile.
Why Your Business Needs a Google Business Profile
The primary reason your business needs a Google Business Profile is obvious now. Google is the most popular search engine. So, having a profile you optimized and set up will increase your website traffic. This traffic will almost certainly result in leads and customers. But there are other reasons to have a profile.
Builds Customer Relationships
GBP lets you engage with customers by responding to reviews, answering questions, and even direct messaging them through the platform. It gives you another platform to engage directly with your customers and build relationships with them. Relationships are key to sales, both immediately and in the future. Building relationships also helps customers think favorably of your brand, which means they’re likely to recommend it to others.
Have you ever searched for a business that doesn’t have a GBP box or the profile isn’t complete? It sets off alarm bells in your mind, even if you don’t realize it at the time. You’re unlikely to patronize a business that doesn’t have a solid online presence. GBP quickly eliminates that issue.
Social proof and reviews are business basics. GBP collects and displays these reviews clearly as part of your listing. If your business shows up in search results, your reviews will be clearly displayed as well, showing your authority and making the opportunity for conversion even easier.
Makes Purchasing Simple
Let’s say you’re thinking of trying out a new local restaurant. You search it up on Google. GBP means you can easily see the restaurant’s hours of operation, location, and website. There may even be some customer reviews for you to look at. You’ll have a picture of the restaurant, making it easier to find when you’re commuting there for the first time. You have a phone number if you want to make a reservation. And you can go to the website to look at the menu. Having this information in one consistent place makes it easy for customers to purchase from your business. It removes friction between the initial search and purchase, making a sale more likely.
GBP helps educate people about the basic information regarding your business. But it’s also where you can share your blog’s content, much like on another social media platform. This content promotion encourages people to visit your website and helps educate them on how your products and services meet their needs.
A “Questions” section is displayed on the profile that you, as the owner, can populate, or potential customers can ask questions you can answer. Then these questions and answers stay available for others to see. We know there is no silly questions, and it’s one way GBP helps build businesses daily!
Your GBP dashboard tells you what people searched for when they found your business and the actions they took through your profile. This data can give you insights into how potential customers use the profile, where you might want to add more information, and what types of information they need. Any information you can get about what potential customers are looking for is valuable. Google Business Profile makes it easy to see these analytics and track your ROI. It will show you the amount of branded vs. non-branded traffic, and how many people visited your profile and called, visited your website, or messaged.
Earn Local Search Ranking
You can use keywords in your GBP to earn local search traffic. This ranking will help you appear in local business searches. For example, if I search for barbecue in Oklahoma City, Google recommends several restaurants’ through their profiles. It looks like this.
Tips for Getting the Most From Your Google Business Profile
Clearly, Google Business Profile has many benefits for your business, especially given how easy it is to set up and manage. Like with everything, you’re likely to get out of this tool what you put into it. Here are some tips for getting the most from your Google Business Profile.
Complete the Full Profile
Your GBP is an opportunity to promote your business for free. Complete the entire profile to get the most out of it. Don’t forget to solicit some customer reviews in advance. Profiles that are complete and have the most information will seem more credible to Google. That means it’s likely to offer up your business more readily.
Include keywords in your GBP information. Google uses keywords as a factor in determining what pages to recommend. GBP isn’t an exception. Not sure how to use keywords effectively? Our post on writing with keywords will help.
Add Special Attributes
GBP allows you to choose from special attributes to add to your profile, depending on the type of business you own. For example, if you have a Black- or female-owned business, you can add that to your profile. These special attributes matter to potential customers who want to support their values with money, so don’t overlook them.
You’re overlooking part of the benefits of GBP if you don’t engage with your customers there. Respond to questions and reviews, and be sure to publish new blog content there each time you put it on your website. Regularly engaging on your profile also shows Google that it’s updated and valuable, making it more likely to recommend your business. Plus, it’s another way to ensure you’re touching your target audience with the keywords and content they’re looking for.
Let Content Journey Help
Google Business Profile is an outstanding, free way to get your business noticed by customers and Google’s search engines. But it does require some upfront work and upkeep on your part. You have to set up the profile entirely and engage there regularly. Not sure you want to take on GBP in addition to running your business? We understand. Content Journey is here to help. Book a call to discuss how we can manage your content marketing, including your GBP.