Why Google My Business is More Important Than Ever

For those new to SEO, you may or may not know about local search optimization. It’s much easier for your page to rank well for “local” searches (I.e. search terms with the name of the city in which you do business) than for relevant keywords alone. You face less competition with local search terms, and there are tools you can use to make it easy for local customers to find you, particularly Google My Business.

Surprisingly, almost 70% of online searches include a location keyword. Even with the increase in online shopping over traditional retail, consumers still want to find local brands with good reputations. Google makes this easy for consumers by including local listings on Google My Business whenever they search for a particular business type in their area.

The top of the Google search results includes listings in this order:

  • Sponsored ads from Google AdWords
  • A map of all local listings under Google My Business
  • List of Businesses under the local search results, ranked by customer ratings
  • Top organic sites

This means that the top organic sites do not actually appear at the top. Even if your website has a higher organic ranking, customers will see the Google My Business listings first. To ensure you have a top spot for local search terms, you need to create a Google My Business account. Your listing should include your hours, contact information, and your website.

You must enter all data into Google my Business. Listings with incomplete data are considered less relevant in the search results, which hurts your rankings tremendously. If consumers are comparing your products or services to other companies, they will likely need more than your address and phone number. Include your website on the listing, and offer an attractive landing page so consumers stay on your site longer than the competition’s.

Google search now allows users to filter businesses by star review rating and hours. The top listings on Google My Business are determined by the number and overall rating of reviews you receive. And as 90% of consumers cite reviews as a determining factor in choosing where they give their business, it’s important that you have as many positive reviews on your listing as possible.

Promote reviews by asking your customers to leave one after purchase.There are services that can help you streamline the review process through email or text follow-ups with customers, taking them to your Google My Business listing. When customers do leave reviews, respond to both the positive and negative comments. This will show prospective customers that you appreciate their feedback.

To learn more about Google My Business optimization, contact the team at Alpha Leads

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