Tips To Optimize Google My Business

Building a Google My Business listing is wonderful but that doesn’t mean you are done.

There are several steps a business has to account for when it comes to optimizing the listing and making sure it is ranking well on Google. Here are the most important tips to think about.

Maintain Up-To-Date Contact Information

This is a silly mistake and something businesses make because they aren’t paying attention. You have to focus on the account just as you would any other part of the business. It is an extension of your online presence and has to be handled with a sense of professionalism.

If not, you are going to be in trouble because the information won’t work out as intended. You have to focus on information that is easy to piece together and is up-to-date with what is on your website.

Use High-Resolution Images

What types of images are being used on your listing?

There is nothing worse than putting up a tremendous listing and then using mediocre images. Blurry images are going to detract from everything you are doing and that is the last thing anyone wants to deal with.

The goal should remain to find valuable images that are going to keep things as simple as you want them to be while offering visitors an opportunity to see what your business is all about. Try to offer as much value through the images as possible because that will increase your engagement level.

Encourage Reviews

Are people reviewing your business?

To showcase your business and have it stand out among the others, you have to take the time to encourage reviews. This doesn’t mean you start paying customers for a good review because that will become obvious quickly.

The goal is to ensure you are simply letting people know about the listing and taking the time to reply to them on the main listing.

This will work well and is going to boost your listing in a hurry. It is one of the best ways to gain traction on Google.

Focus on Finding the Right Category

There are specific categories for each listing and you have to make sure your business is in the right one. There is no reason to put up the listing if you aren’t taking the time to place it under the right category.

This is a real waste and is going to keep pushing you down as other “relevant” listings show up according to Google’s algorithm. You don’t want Google’s algorithm to focus on other listings because you missed this step.

Don’t Redirect URLs

This is a common issue that happens when businesses try to redirect URLs rather than using their newest one. This is a mistake because Google isn’t going to like a redirected URL. It doesn’t seem authentic and is going to take away from your business.

Plus, it is going to look like the listing isn’t updated and that is the last thing you want to present to the customer or to Google.

It is better to swap the URL and make sure only the new one is being used.

Redirects are okay in other scenarios but not this one.

Final Thoughts

These are the best tips to focus on when it comes to optimizing your business and making sure things are done the right way. The goal should be to set the right tone by offering an up-to-date listing that is filled with quality information. This is how you are going to gain traction on Google and generate reviews over the long-term.

If you do this the right way, your business is going to see a tremendous amount of traffic both on your website and in-person for retail stores.

If you need some additional step-by-step instructions then check out this great video on optimizing your Google My Business listing. This is probably one of the best that I’ve seen around.

A Beginner’s Guide On Local SEO

What is Local SEO?

Let’s begin by understanding the nuances of local SEO and what it encompasses.

Local SEO refers to targeting local keywords to rank on Google and/or other major search engines. In general, a good example of this would be targeting a keyword such as “best painting company in New York” instead of “Best painting company.” The idea is to add the city into the keyword as a way to localize the word.

This is important because the average homeowner residing in New York isn’t going to want to hire a painting contractor sitting in Paris, France. They will want someone that is close to home and that is why they are more than likely going to search for “best painting company in New York” when they hop onto Google.

Tips for Ranking Locally On Google

1) Set Up a Google My Business Listing

The first thing a business has to do is set up their listing on Google My Business. You are going to verify the listing as directed and then start filling everything out based on the most recent information at your disposal. This includes things such as your hours of operation, address, phone number, and more.

Everything has to be up-to-date because this will push your local SEO to another level. You will start to see your local keywords climb and your Google My Business listing is also going to rise in front of the others.

If you’re looking for a great guide on setting up your GMB, check out HubSpots’ >> The Ultimate Guide to Google My Business.

2) Optimize for Local Keywords

Are you taking the time to optimize for local keywords? This is a must when it comes to local SEO and it has to be done right away.

These keywords can include:

  • Best Painting Services in New York
  • New York Painting Services

Simply take the niche you are in and then start building local keywords such as the ones mentioned above. The goal is to go after as many of these keywords that are relevant to your specific niche. It is one of the easiest ways to cut away all of the competition and put your name in front of the local customer base.

The key with this tip is to not overdo it though. A lot of people will go overboard and end up over-optimizing their site which will cause it to look spammy to Google.

If Google detects over-optimization, it can cause your website to lose its rankings.

The best way to optimize your content for these kinds of local keywords is to mix in different variations of the keywords into your content. If you’re targeting “Best Painting Services in New York” you don’t want to repeat this phrase continually through your content, it’s going to look weird to the humans visiting your site and Google may flag it.

Aim to have this phrase in your content once, “Best Painting Services in New York.” Then somewhere else in your content have something like “New York’s #1 rated painter.” Then mix in “Top New York painting.”

By incorporating different variations of the same kind of phrase into your content, you’re able to avoid over-optimization, while making your content very specific to your target keyword.

3) Add Location Pages on the Website

You will have to start adding location pages on your website as soon as possible.

These location pages can be divided based on cities, towns, and/or any other way such as neighborhoods to generate traffic. You want to target as many ways a person will search for your business on Google.

This means whether they go by state, city, town, neighborhood, or even major streets, you are the name that is going to pop up.

4) Build Authoritative Local Backlinks

To become a local powerhouse, you are going to need authoritative backlinks. This means you want backlinks from businesses in the region (can include unrelated niches) while also focusing on generating high-quality backlinks from other relevant niches. The goal is to build a strong online asset that is going to become easy to rank for local keywords.

This is a real difference-maker when it comes to pushing in front of other local competitors that are not as honed in on what needs to be done for local SEO results.

Final Thoughts

These tips are going to go a long way in setting the foundation for your business and how well it does. Remember, it is important to target local keywords as that is going to trim the competition and allow you to hone in on potential customers that are nearby. There is no reason to go after international leads that aren’t going to convert for your small business.

If you’re doing it yourself, stick to the tips mentioned here, focus on building a good online asset, and watch as your local SEO campaign flourishes.