If it seems as though Strider is talking a lot about Google My Business here in these blogs, you aren’t mistaken. It’s a wonderful tool that small business operators should be taking advantage of.
People say that about a lot of things, but we’re harping on it because it’s true.
Now Google My Business is not necessarily the be-all or the end-all of marketing for local businesses. No, of course, it isn’t. So why should you use Google My Business?
Simply put, this free online platform helps local-area business owners (small, medium, and large) increase their online visibility when prospective customers look on Google search and maps for whatever industry, goods, or service they are looking for.
In fact, Google My Business was designed for consumers to find and review businesses within their own local area.
Because Google seems to know exactly where a person is when using its search engine, the local search results are highlight variable based on proximity. Almost 50% of searches on Google have local intent.
If someone situated in Calgary is doing a Google search for “truck driving schools”, good local Calgary-area businesses related to a “truck driving school” that have a GMB listing will show up in the search. We’ll discuss the “good” aspect below.
In fact, three Calgary-area links regarding Google My Business truck driving schools will show up.
Which three? It depends. Google will find a company with 1) either the closest in locality to the Google search engine request, 2) three Google My Business listings that specify products or services closest to the needs of the searcher, and 3) the three companies with the highest customer satisfaction rating on the Google My Business platform.
It’s not just about location. It’s also what your company offers, and how customers view your company that matters. Most of all, it’s about how much confidence Google has in the information they have on your business.
Do you have to use Google My Business – or are there alternatives?
Of course, there are alternatives, but Google has become the de facto search engine for most people on the planet who use a computer. Ergo, when people are searching for goods or services online, Google My Business helps your business get noticed by more people – specifically more people who are looking for what you have to offer.
Getting noticed by prospective customers is half the battle for any business, let alone a local small business owner. By using Google My Business, your business listing will appear above the standard Google search result. It’s even possible to be listed twice, with a standard Google search result PLUS a Google My Business listing. Twice is nice.
Google My Business also provides a means for a small business to gain the trust of a customer or prospective customer, thanks to the verification process and rating system – even though the GMB system has been plagued with fake listings and fake reviews.
The Google local algorithms aim to ensure that only good businesses with a good customer track record are viewed at the top page during a search. As long as the customers in your area continue to like the goods and services you provide – and they continue to add positive reviews or ratings – your company will continue to be a viable searchable company attracting more prospective customers.
Google My Business is a free platform that is simple to set-up and use, although less digital-savvy people or those for whom English isn’t their forte may seek help from professional SEO companies like Strider to ensure their listing, and the language contained within it, is truly effective. Located in the Toronto area, the Strider team can help local businesses across North America initiate and maintain all of the above marketing strategies. Check out Strider’s Value SEO plans, or contact us for a personalized recommendation.