Claiming your Google My Business listing is an important part of boosting your search engine optimization (SEO) and improving your online presence. However, just having the listing isn’t enough — you have to maximize its impact.

Optimizing your Google My Business (GMB) listing can help you share clear information about your business with those who find your profile. It also helps Google know when to showcase your business in the all-important Local Pack. 

How can you optimize your listing and get the most out of your GMB profile? Here are the tips you need.

Why Optimize Your Profile?

Isn’t having a Google My Business listing enough? Not if you don’t do anything with it! A GMB profile that hasn’t been optimized is like a social media page with no information or updates. It’s short, bare, and unattractive.

When you optimize your profile, you invite engagement from those who find you. If consumers want to know your operating hours but are drawn in by your photos and reviews, they’ll spend more time learning about you. That makes them much more likely to visit in the future.

If you want consumers to find you through search results and engage with your business, an optimized GMB profile is essential.

Complete Every Section of Your Profile

The most important part of optimizing your Google My Business page is filling it out completely. You want to fill in your name, address, phone number, website, and hours immediately. However, don’t overlook the additional sections.

You’ll need to choose a category and attributes, describe your products and services, and post some questions and answers. Each section has its own tab on the left of the screen. 

Double-check your contact information. You want to use your business name as it appears on your storefront. If you try to add keywords or other information, Google could penalize you. 

Make sure your contact information exactly matches how you’ve listed yourself in other places online. The consistency of your name, address, and phone number (NAP) is a crucial indicator of your credibility for Google search results.

When your profile is complete, Google will have all the information it needs to rank you in search results. On top of that, potential customers will learn a lot about you when they visit your profile!

Include Pictures

A picture is worth 1000 words — or perhaps $1,000 — when it comes to engaging with potential customers. People love to see what a business looks like before they visit, and photos give a snapshot into your store.

You also get more customers when you have pictures. Businesses with photos on their listings get more clickthroughs to their website than those without. Google has put together a guide on what kinds of images do well and how to upload them.

The goal is to make your profile eye-catching and show off your store as a place someone wants to be. Photos make that easy!

Encourage Customer Reviews

Did you know that 84% of people trust online reviews as much as a friend’s recommendation? And if there are reviews on a profile, 91% of visitors will read them.

There’s a great deal of power in having happy customers share about their experiences with your company. Encourage buyers to leave a review on Google as soon as they make a purchase. You can follow up with an email reminder a few days later. 

Explain how important it is for other people to see the excellent work you’re doing, which is why you appreciate customer reviews so much. This helps your clientele feel good about leaving a positive comment for you.

As you begin to accumulate reviews, make sure you’re engaging and commenting on them. This shows you’re an involved business owner, and you care what your customers have to say. 

It’s especially important to answer negative reviews. You can apologize and offer to take the conversation offline to resolve the concern. That way, you don’t argue online, but you show others that you care about someone’s poor experience.

An Optimized Listing Makes a Big Difference

Optimizing your GMB profile makes a big difference in how others find and interact with your company. When you have a complete profile, photos, and plenty of reviews, you’ll draw people in.

Google My Business is a free marketing tool that business owners can’t afford to overlook. Are you ready to maximize your digital marketing? We can help. Contact us for more information today!