If you run a local business, reaching more customers is vital. Luckily, Google Business Profile ( formerly known as Google My Business GMB ) can help you do just that. It’s a free tool that lets you manage how your local business appears in Google Search and Maps.
According to Google, 30% of all mobile searches are related to location. Therefore, your Google Business Profile can help you attract more customers to your local business, whether they’re from within your city or other parts of India.
Here are steps to make the most of Google Business Profile and attract more customers:
Table of Contents
Claim and Verify Your Business
Start by claiming your business . Go to the Google Business Profile website and follow the instructions to verify that you’re the business owner. This helps you control the information Google shows about your business.
Example: Priya, the owner of “Saree Splendour,” goes to the Google Business Profile website, claims her business, and verifies it by receiving a verification code at her boutique’s address. This helps her gain control over her business listing on Google.
Complete Your Profile:
Fill in every detail about your business – name, address, phone number, website, hours of operation, etc. Add appealing photos that showcase your products, services, and ambiance.
Example: Priya fills in all details about Saree Splendour – the boutique’s name, address, phone number, website, and operating hours. She uploads vibrant photos of beautiful sarees, elegant salwar suits, and the boutique’s interior.
Choose the Right Categories
Select categories that describe your business accurately. This helps Google match your business with relevant searches. Be specific! If you’re a pizza place, don’t just choose “restaurant.” Go for “pizza restaurant.”
Keep Information Updated:
Ensure your business details are accurate and up-to-date. If your hours change or you have special holiday hours, update them promptly. Customers appreciate accurate information.
Example: Priya promptly updates Google Business Profile whenever Saree Splendour has special sales or changes its hours for festivals like Diwali or Eid. This ensures customers searching for her shop get accurate information.
Positive reviews on GMB can attract more customers. Encourage satisfied customers to leave reviews by providing great service and politely asking them to share their experience.
Example: Priya delivers excellent service and encourages her customers to leave reviews on Google about their shopping experience at Saree Splendour. Happy customers often leave positive feedback, attracting new patrons.
Engage with Customers:
Respond to reviews, both positive and negative, promptly and politely. Engaging with customers shows that you value their feedback and care about their experience.
Example: Priya responds graciously to all reviews. If a customer praises the shop’s collection, Priya warmly thanks them. If there’s a complaint, she addresses it politely and offers a solution promptly.
Use Posts and Updates:
GMB allows you to post updates, events, and offers directly to your profile. Utilize this feature to keep customers informed about promotions, events, or new products/services.
Example: Priya regularly posts about new saree designs, festive offers, or styling tips on Saree Splendour’s Google business profile. These updates keep her customers engaged and informed.
GMB provides insights into how customers find your business and what they do after finding it. Use this data to understand your audience better and tailor your strategies accordingly.
Example: Priya checks GMB insights to see how customers discover Saree Splendour. If most find the shop through Google searches, she focuses on optimizing her Google Business Profile and website for better visibility.
Use Messaging Feature:
Enable the messaging feature to allow customers to communicate with you directly through your profile . Prompt responses can improve customer satisfaction.
Example: Priya enables the messaging feature on Google Business Profile (GBP). Customers can now inquire about fabric details, availability, or custom stitching directly through Google, and Priya ensures quick and helpful responses.
Add Products or Services:
If applicable, showcase your products or services within Google Business Profile . This gives customers a glimpse of what you offer before they even visit your website or store.
Example: Priya adds sarees, salwar suits, and accessories as products on GBP, showcasing various styles like Banarasi silk, Kanjivaram, and designer collections. Customers browsing GBP get a glimpse of Saree Splendour’s offerings.
Create Q&A Section:
Anticipate customer queries by creating a Q&A section on your Google business profile. Answer common questions to provide helpful information upfront.
Example: Priya anticipates common queries about fabric care, return policies, or blouse stitching and sets up a Q&A section on Google business profile. This preemptively addresses customer concerns, enhancing their shopping experience.
By using Google business profile effectively, you can enhance your online presence, connect with more customers, and ultimately grow your business. Regularly updating and engaging with your profile keeps your business relevant and attractive to potential customers searching for your products or services.
Google Business Profile FAQs
What is Google Business Profile?
A Google Business Profile is a free tool by Google for businesses to control how their info appears on Google Search and Maps. It helps showcase crucial details like address, hours, reviews, and more. You can engage with customers by responding to reviews, adding photos, and posting updates. For further queries, check the official Google Business Profile FAQ page here.
Can you share an example of a well-optimised Google Business Profile?
A great example of a well-optimised Google Business Profile is the Thaila Silks Center. They have effectively utilized their Google Business Profile to provide comprehensive information about their business. From accurate location details to operating hours, customer reviews, and vibrant photos showcasing their products, Thaila Silks Center has optimised their profile to make it engaging and informative for potential customers.
You can check out their Google Business Profile here: Thaila Silks Center
What is the benefits of optimising Google Business Profiles?
A well-optimized Google Business Profile serves as the cornerstone of local SEO strategies. Businesses stand to gain numerous advantages, including heightened visibility, improved search engine rankings, and increased customer trust. When potential customers search for local products or services, a fully optimized Google Business Profile ensures that your business stands out from the competition.
What is Local SEO
Local SEO, or Local Search Engine Optimization, is a strategy that helps businesses enhance their online visibility for local customers. It involves optimizing online content, such as websites and Google Business Profiles, to appear in local search results when people are looking for nearby products or services.
Why is Local SEO Essential for Small Businesses?
Local SEO is vital for small businesses for several reasons:
Increased Visibility: It ensures that when someone in your locality searches for a product or service you offer, your business appears prominently.
Better Rankings: Optimizing for local search improves your rankings on search engines, making it more likely for potential customers to discover your business.
Enhanced Trust: When your business shows up in local search results, it builds trust among local customers, signaling that your business is relevant and accessible.
How does a strong local SEO presence affect online reputation and customer choice?
A robust local SEO strategy contributes to a positive online reputation. This positive image influences potential customers to choose your business over competitors when making purchasing decisions. Having a prominent and positive online presence can sway customer choices in your favor.
Can local search influence physical store visits?
Absolutely. For brick-and-mortar stores, appearing in local search results can significantly increase foot traffic to your physical location. When people find your business easily, they’re more likely to visit in person.