Google My Business allows business owners to manage their online presence through free tools offered by the search engine giant. It’s a critical component of Local SEO, which involves getting your business visible for those looking for products and services in your area.
Google My Business works as a key part of digital marketing. By taking control of how your business appears on Google Search and Google Maps, you increase your chances of building and growing a local base of customers.
It’s something every business should use. Because of how powerful Google Search is for customers, not doing all you can to become visible in searches is a missed opportunity.
How Does Google My Business Work?
Making use of Google My Business is straightforward. Google offers free tools that are easy to use. By creating a Google account, you can verify your business with the search engine and edit how your business information appears on Google Search and Google Maps.
You also can interact with customers who review your business and post photos that expand upon your business listing, showing more about what you do. Adding photos can drive up to 42% more requests for directions on Google Maps and 35% more click throughs to the business website, according to Google.
Business owners can also change how their hours of operation appear in Google searches, as well as other details.
The Importance of Local SEO
Making use of Google My Business is important because it adds to your Local SEO efforts.
SEO refers to search engine optimization, which involves taking steps to ensure your website content ranks high in Google Search. Local SEO refers to ranking high in Google Search for local, relevant searches. These local searches make up about half of all searches made.
A simple example is someone searching for “coffee in Tampa” or “car repair in Atlanta.” In either case, by editing and keeping Google My Business information updated, you have a better chance of ranking high in local searches.
It can also help you appear in what is called the Google Snack Pack (sometimes called Google 3 Pack or Local 3 Pack). To see what we mean, search for coffee in your hometown. You will likely get a response in which Google places the top three local businesses in a box above the other search engine results.
Getting into the Google Snack Pack requires many of the same fundamental SEO techniques used to do well in search. This includes good content and making the site mobile-friendly. Google My Business can also help you get into this all-important snack box.
When it comes to powerful business tools, few things can match Google My Business. For no charge and a minimum amount of effort, it’s possible to make your business more visible to local searchers. That’s exactly where you want to be whether you’re a brick and mortar business (like a grocery) or a company that provides services in the region (such as a cleaning company). In either case, Google My Business can help you attract more clients.