Hey Google Birdies!! Which is your favorite Google app?
For me undoubtedly it is Google Maps. I lack a sense of direction hence Maps is my savior. Sometimes, I wonder what would have happened to me without Google maps. Maps are a powerful tool that helps us to reach places safely without getting lost in fields. Thanks to Google for ensuring that I don’t need to search for people to reach my destination.
Won’t you be surprised if I tell you that maps are helpful for marketing? I am here to help you all with how you can use maps as a part of your marketing strategies. We will share effective tips to ensure customers find you and walk through a few essential features.
What is Google Maps Marketing?
The process of using the functionality of Google Maps to ensure your business is found easily is called Google Maps Marketing. This suits all types of business from smaller to larger scale but is more profitable for smaller scale business. Google Maps marketing includes visibility and positioning and if you use it strategically, it plays a prominent role in your business. If you aim at a higher rank in search, then you can enhance your business. The better you optimize your profile, the better your chances are for showing up in a Google Maps search for your business type in your area.
Benefits for Local Business
Google takes care of 88% of Google searches which constitutes 3.5 billion searches every day. According to the survey, local searches convert 76% of sales compared to physical visits to local shops every day.
The way Google Map Marketing impacts the process Google views your business or how it affects the search is known as the local 3 pack. In Google search, a Google map result (Local 3 pack) appears in the top 3. Google map brings a lot of customers towards your business. If you ensure you are in the top 3, then your business will get a lot of scopes. Your chances of reaching customers increase. Hence, Google map marketing ranks as one of the top practices among local SEO networks.
The importance of Google Maps for Local Business
The primary goal of Google map marketing is not just to rank high on maps but also to enhance the possibility on Google search engines. Let us understand the impact of Google marketing on our local business.
Google results are proximity based
Based on your physical location, Google Maps results are optimized. This has become a common approach due to the increase in mobile volume searching. If you search for anything on Google on your mobile, the results topped in your organic search (maybe because of SEO or increased volume) are similar to the top stop on PPC ads. The ads are listed based on the ad rank formula; Google maps listings are prioritized based on the user’s location. Position ‘A’ is closest to the user’s location and is followed by ‘B’ and ‘C’. if you go for ‘near me’ then you find more accurate results. It seems like Google is using maps to find your local business.
Google map results in rankings
Offering proximity-based results are not the only type of results of Google maps. What if a user is not enabled the location? The results are provided for any destination, not just in the user’s location. I am in Bangalore and I can search for the best resorts in Delhi. This is because of Google my business listing optimization and other factors.
Setting Up Your Google My Business Profile
If you are wondering where and how to create my business profile here is a simple guide for you.
Creating a GBM account
- Sign into your Google account on your desktop. If you don’t have one, create one. While creating a new Google account, use your business email.
- Secondly, move to create your profile.
- Type your business name; you can select the business from the list of suggested business types. If your business type is already taken, request ownership.
- Search for your business category.
- Navigate to the next button.
- Select your location where your customers can visit.
If you have businesses with a storefront staffed during business hours: Click Yes.
Now enter the address of your business, on finishing click on the next button.
If you have businesses that don’t have a storefront staffed during business hours: Click No
- Now give the service area of your business. You can enter your service area based on city or postal code. You are allowed to enter up to 20 service areas.
- Now give your phone number and website URL.
- Now navigate to next and you will have the option to create a website for your business.
- Choose the finish button to complete the process.
Best Practices for Setting up a GMB Account
- Ensure you create only one business profile for your service area. If multiple accounts are found for the same area, google may block your account.
- If you have not yet set up a storefront for your business then hide your business address.
- When you are setting up your account ensure you select the service area. This will enhance your business profile visibility. If your business address is hidden then your service will be visible. If you had not hidden your business address, here are the steps you need to follow-
- Land on your business profile.
- Click on edit profile; navigate to Business information and then location.
- You can turn or off there.
While setting up your business account, the following practices will help you to enhance your business profile.
Completing your Business profile
To increase the visibility of your business profile, complete the information. Once you verify your account, your business profile will be visible across Google. However, your profile may fail to engage with customers if your profile lacks information, hence completing the profile is important.
If you can provide complete business information to your customers on Google searches and maps, then the chances of customers visiting your profile will increase more. If customers can find complete information on your business profile, then customers purchasing items increases by 50%.
- Name your business profile: If your business doesn’t have a name then how will customers find your profile? Customers will consider unanimous profiles as fake; hence provide your business name. This will help you to promote your profile as well.
- Providing business information: Add information about your business service to enhance your customer engagement. Firstly, add the type of services you offer on your profile. Based on your business category, mention the different services you offer. You can also add in-store products to your profile. You can choose to upload manually or automatically. Mention details like business hours, location, and contact details.To engage with customers, you can add customer reviews.
- Choosing the right category: Aligning your business profile with the right category will help you to attract the right customers. This will ease the process of finding your business profile for your customers.
Adding photos and videos
Upload photos and videos of your business profile to attract customers. You and your customers can add photos and videos. To promote engagement with your customers and boost your ranking in search results, you should regularly add photos or videos to your profile.
Best practices while adding photos
If you choose to add photos and videos to your business profile, here are a few tips.
- Logo: Having a logo for your business profile will help customers to recognize your business. You can convey basic information like phone number, business hours, and theme with help of a logo.
- Cover photo: Choose the best photo that represents your business for the cover photo.
- Photos: Upload photos representing services and features of your business to convey the purpose of your business
Verify your business account
- Now it’s time to verify your account. Review the information and request for verification. At the top, click on the red banner to verify the moment. To verify later, click on the later button.
Importance of verification
If you can get the verification done, then it acts as a guarantee for customers. Hence verification boosts your business and customer engagement.
Optimizing your Google Maps Listing
To enhance the chance of your business profile showing up on Google maps, optimizing your profile plays a vital role. Here are a few tips-
- Keyword research: The best way to boost your map listings is by targeting local searches. You can do so by incorporating location-based keywords. Research or perform surveys on what people would like to buy or have in their respective locations and incorporate them into your website. Understanding what your competitors are doing in the market, will help you to enhance customer engagement.
- You can do keyword research by understanding competitors, conducting surveys and polls, look for trending topics on search engines. Finding the right keywords will help you to boost your rank on search engines, to do so you can use keyword finder tools like Google keyword planner (GPK), keyword explorer, etc.
- Try to understand keywords, then you can seed them in different modes like phrase match and terms match.
Terms match using the exact keywords and in the same order. Phrase match is presenting keywords ideas in your sentence.
Best mall in the city
Mall in the city with a food court
If you understand your keywords, you can share your views on keywords to enhance your site rankings.
Incorporating Keywords into Your GMB Profile
Keywords regarding your business will help you to connect more with the audience. Hence incorporate keywords on the main page, the home page, blogs, posts, products and services page, contact section, and about page of your website. To enhance your ranking on Google map listings, include keywords in your title, headings, subheadings, URLs, content, image text, etc. This will boost your confidence as well.
Choosing the right category
To direct your GMB profiles towards customers and GMB listing, your GMB categories play a vital role. Choosing the right category will help you to find your ranking on the listings. Now you have the option to choose up to 10 categories, 1 primary category, and 9 secondary categories. For your primary category, choose the one that best represents the core offering of your business. If any other categories apply, choose them as secondary categories. If you are wondering how can we select categories, you can do by-
- Search terms
- Researching your competitor categories
- Chrome extension of GMB
- Choose categories from possible categories
Benefits of choosing the right category
If you can choose the right category, you will be able to-
- Attract core customers of your business
- Enhance your ranking on Google map listings
- Expand your business across the service area
Writing a compelling business description
A good description of your business is key information for your users about your products and services. It is not just about the business name, and contact details, there is a lot more to add. A lot of features, and new additions has made profile play a vital role in search, maps, and among customers.
Best practices for writing business description
While drafting a business description, it is best to be mindful of the following aspects-
- Include posts on your websites covering updates, products, and services
- Frequently asked questions
- Booking and reservation buttons
- Give the complete list of products and services
- Include photos and videos to describe your profile
- Save the option to refer later
- Chat option to connect with you for queries
- Include a history of your business
- Provide relevant and accurate information
- Keep descriptions simple and short, lengthy descriptions are boring. Limit it to 750 characters.
Tips for Writing a Compelling Description
If you are wondering what to include, and what not, here are a few tips to create an attractive description.
- Give them information on how different you are from competitors.
- Ensure you won’t add any links or URLs in the description.
- Give a brief history of your business like the year of start, milestones achieved, etc.
- Don’t forget to add a compelling call to action
- Ensure you won’t give a link to discounts or offers, give it in posts.
- Ensure you won’t write everything in CAPS, it seems like you are shouting online.
- Incorporate keywords in starting a few lines naturally.
- While drafting a description, keep your audience in your mind. It should convey the right information to the target audience.
- Add your social media profiles to boost your connection with customers.
Encouraging customer reviews
Google reviews will help potential customers to decide whether they should do business with you or not. Google reviews will help your business in the service area. If customers provide reviews on Google whether they liked the product, or service not will help you to improve business aspects. It is a good chance to get valuable feedback and maintain a good post-business bond with customers.
Google reviews will help others customers to decide on products and services. It will enhance the visibility of your business profile. Hence encourage your customers to give feedback.
How to Encourage Customer Reviews
Sometimes customers neglect to give feedback but you will lose an opportunity to gain valuable feedback. Hence encourage your customers to give a review on Google.
- Ask for feedback in person: After customers buy your products or service in a local store, you can ask for feedback. Train your employees to request and encourage them to visit our business profile and give feedback.
- Send an email: Roll out an email to your customers seeking feedback. Keep your email simple, short, and compelling.
- Social media: Now most of your customers will be on social media. Hence you can ask for feedback there as well.
- Create a landing page: You can create a landing page that links to your review page.
Utilizing Google Maps Features
Along with direction, Google maps provide you with various information on nearby business and location; nearby sports academy, gym, market, shopping centers, etc. This will help you to show your presence in the locality. Here is how you can add maps to your business.
Google Maps Ads
To improve your presence in the locality, Google maps play a prominent role.
Understanding Google maps ads
We are stuck to our phones even if we stand before the location, we will be found on Google Maps. You can find a store, coffee shops, restraints, and shopping malls nearby places. Along with that, you can find the business description, working hours, contact details, address, payment mode, etc. These ads will make your brand more popular, generate sales and engage with customers.
Setting up Google map ads
If you are not tech-savvy and find difficulty in linking ads to your business profile, here is how to set up Google Maps ads for your business profile.
- In Google ads, look for extensions. Here is where you customize ads.
- Now, look for an extension that you want to link with your profile.
- Now link your profile with the BGM account
- Adjust the ad display permission
- Now add necessary information like contact details, data, and operation mode.
Maximizing Google Maps Marketing Results
Understanding Google Analytics
Google Analytics is a powerful tool, that helps you to analyze how your business profile doing in the search engines. This will help you to optimize your content and business profile. You can make changes according to the reports. You can keep track of traffic for your website, sales, the websites you got traffic from, etc.
Setting up Google Analytics
Setting up Google analytics takes time but it provides valuable information once you connect to your business profile.
- Set up Google tag manager. For that, you need to give your company name and country.
- Create a google analytics account using your website URL and name.
- Configure your Google tag manager
- Set up your Google Analytics goal
- Link into your business profile, and grant permission to your team.
- Best Practices for Measuring Success with Google Analytics
You can measure the success of your Google maps using
- Page views
- Page views by source
- Page views by title
- Referral visits
- Social referrals
- Page value
- Demographic reports
Staying up-to-date with Google Maps changes
Google Maps releases updates to improve the experience of customers. hence stay updated to deliver information and engage with customers. You can update, and make necessary changes to your profile. It is a quick and easy process.
Consistency in the listing information
If you update your product list or service list, how can we convey information to customers?
Well, that’s simple. Be consistent. Constantly update your profile with the changes you made in your profile, and milestones you achieved, add photos and videos and encourage customers to review. If you maintain consistency it will help you to connect with customers and boost your ranking on the list.
Best Practices for Maintaining Consistency
There are no quick hacks, no overnight fixes, and no easy way to rise to the top of the pack. To maintain consistency in your business profile, you can achieve by
- Uploading photos and videos
- Expanding your products and service
- Expanding your service areas
- Adding milestones
Google map marketing strategies will help you to expand your business.
The Benefits of Google Maps Marketing for Your Business
Google map marketing will improve the visibility of your business profile, it helps you to engage with customers. Your business profile visibility in the location will be enhanced and you can rank top on Google map listing.
You can build trust with your customers with reviews, photos, and videos.
Improve customer experience
Customers can get access to business profiles easily, and they can find details and engage with business owners better.
Understanding these basics is easy and important
This will help you to shine among your competitors. Invest your time to optimize your content and engage with customers. Good luck!