What Is Google Business, And How Can It Benefit My Small Business?
A Google Business Profile or GBP is a platform that allows users to submit reviews and information about local businesses, ask questions, or post media content related to the business such as photos, videos, and social media posts. With Google’s constant development of numerous products and tools every year, it’s unsurprising that some thrive while others remain stuck in beta. Among the successful products is Google Business Profile, formerly known as Google My Business, which has become a “must-have” for any local business looking to secure a prominent position in local search results. Its success has cemented its position as a valuable tool for businesses seeking to increase their visibility and reach a wider audience.
What Are The Guidelines On Creating A Google Business Profile?
Initially you are going to need a Google account to create a Google Business Profile. Each local business should have an individual account for that company. This is better than having a marketing agency that uses their account to manage your company’s Google Business Profile. If need be, Google My Business allows the option to have multiple listing managers/owners that can edit any posts on your GBP.
When creating your local business’ profile, make sure you fill out as many of the fields as possible, and include up-to-date information. This will ensure that when a web search on Google for your business is made, it has the correct information on how to reach your business, and where you are located, etc. Complete and accurate GMB listings get 7x more clicks than those missing information and are 70% more likely to attract location visits. So, it is extremely important to ensure the data you input is always the most accurate information at the time.
Why Is This Beneficial To My Business?
Google Business Profile (GBP) has become an increasingly essential tool for local businesses as Google consistently adds new features. The benefits of using GBP are extensive and continuously expanding:
- It is a major factor in local rankings of your business
- It’s a must have for zero-click searches, which make up to 50% of all searches. Zero click searches are queries in search engines such as Google, Bing, or Yandex that do not send you to a third-party website from an organic search result. Around 50 percent of searches currently end without a click on an organic search result. Everything you need to know about zero click searches can be found here
- It facilitates easy business comparisons.
- It consolidates images, reviews, and promotions in one location.
- It’s utilized on Google Maps for directions and local business listings. Google allows both businesses with a physical location and those without to use Google My Business.
- It helps search users find relevant local businesses.
- It allows search users to suggest edits and provide feedback to enhance accuracy.
What Makes Google Business Profile Crucial For SEO?
The significance of Google Business Profile (GBP) for local search visibility cannot be overstated. It’s widely acknowledged as the most critical local ranking factor, with how you set up and maintain your profile directly impacting your local search visibility.
Furthermore, the importance of GBP continues to increase, with over 60% of marketing professionals believing it’s more important year after year. The anatomy of your GBP is also crucial when it comes to ranking factors, with Google drawing cues from various aspects of your listing profile. The information you provide, including your business category and customer reviews, is a goldmine of data that informs Google about your location, services, and customer engagement, and feeds into the local search algorithm.
Research has shown that GBP signals account for around 36% of your Local Pack ranking, more than any other ranking factor This means that your listing bears much of the responsibility for informing Google when your local business should appear in the search results for local consumers. 88% of smartphone users visit a business within a week after finding it in a local search. That is just one of many statistics that show how lucrative a GMB Profile can be to a small business from an SEO standpoint.
Google My Business Is Great For Information, Reviews, Appointment Bookings, And More
Google Business Profile (GBP) is not only useful for Google in gathering vital data about your business, but it also provides invaluable information to local consumers. Your GBP offers a wealth of information, including how busy you are at various times of the day, your opening hours, service options, and health and safety protocols. Images, reviews, videos, and offers all assist a search user in selecting a local business to frequent. Google Business Profile consolidates all these useful content assets in one place, making it easy for the search user to access the information they need from a single centralized source, saving them valuable time.
As a local business, having the ability to share local updates, post pictures, showcase your best reviews, and publish news and special offers from your profile is invaluable, particularly in areas with tough competition. By maximizing your GBP listing’s potential—sharing professional images, collecting and responding to reviews, pushing promotions and special offers—you will be actively providing local consumers with reasons to choose your business. One of the most significant benefits of Google Business Profile for service businesses is the ability to take bookings and appointments directly from your listing. Whether you are a hair salon, chiropractor, restaurant, or sports massage clinic, making it as convenient as possible to book an appointment can only be beneficial to your bottom line.
So, Is A Google Business Profile (GBP) Really Worth The Time?
As a small business owner, utilizing Google My Business is crucial to your success. It offers a cost-effective means of increasing your online presence and reaching local consumers who are searching for your products or services. By taking advantage of the platform’s features, such as optimizing your business information, responding to customer reviews, and sharing updates and offers, you can enhance your reputation, attract new customers, and build lasting relationships with your existing ones. With its many benefits, GMB is a powerful tool that should be a fundamental part of your digital marketing strategy. So, if you haven’t already, create your profile today and start reaping the rewards.