Local search engine optimization (SEO) is crucial for local businesses like restaurants, bars, and hotels. It can lead to increased business from users in the vicinity who search on Google for local goods and services. If you have such a business, you can use Google My Business (GMB) as part of your local SEO. Your business will then appear in Search Engine Result Pages (SERPs) with a map to your physical location and other details when users in your vicinity search for your brand name or keywords related to your business. For example, if you run a coffee shop then your business will show up when someone physically close to your shop searches for the term ‘coffee shops near me’. This is very important because it means that there is a chance of having that person come to your shop and buy. Without appearing in the results you will have an almost zero chance of getting business from that person. Instead, your competitor who will have appeared in the results will have a higher chance of getting the business. When you consider that a study found out that over 70% of online shopping journeys start with a search engine query, then you will see showing up in SERPs can lead to massive improvements in your revenue. On the other side, being invisible in Google listings is bad for business since you will miss out on many potential customers.
WHAT IS GOOGLE MY BUSINESS?
It’s a free online listing on Google’s search engine which allows business owners like you to manage their online presence. This listing shows information like your business’ phone number, address, reviews, and a map showing your physical location. This information is then displayed in the results when a matching search query by a person in the vicinity triggers it. The person can even get directions to your business straight from the search results.You have probably seen a Google My Business listing which is found on the search results page on your right. Google My Business has the option to add a call extension since most people search on mobile devices. This call extension makes it easy for users to call your business by simply pressing a button. Customers can also review your business and rate you right on your listing and everyone who searches for your business will see this information. This means that if you have plenty of positive reviews it may help you get more customers.
Local SEO Benefits of using Google My Business
- Potential customers access your business information easily
This is because the information is shown right in Google results and they do not even have to visit your website.
- It’s a source of feedback from consumers
You can get important feedback from customers through comments, reviews and even questions on your listing. When you respond to the feedback you can also initiate dialogue with your customers. This dialogue can culminate in a sale.
- Learn the keywords that are associated with your business
Connecting your Google listing with Google Analytics shows you what keywords customers are using to trigger your business to show up in SERPs.
This information is useful for planning purposes. You can then use these keywords more on your listing and target them so that you can rank higher.
- View visitor behavior
Google Analytics will also show you what visitors are doing on your listing. For example, it will show you how many called your business from the listing and how many proceeded to visit your website.
- You become aware of your customer’s physical locations
Google My Business will show you where your visitors are physically coming from. So for example, if a visitor gets directions from a certain location you will be to see that. This helps with location marketing tactics e.g. you can increase your bids for certain keywords in that particular location to get more customers.
- Helps you rank in local Google results
You can be found on Google when a user searches for the products/services you sell whilst in your vicinity. This increases the likelihood of you getting business. When used effectively, Google My Business can help you improve your digital marketing strategy by showing you trends in your and industry.
You can learn more about Google my business here https://www.google.com/business/