Google Maps / Google My Business
Critical to Local SEO
Local search is a booming market. Mobile devices represent an ever-increasing share of search engine access. Location services, such as the GPS service in smartphones, are used to localize results for users. Also, the number of "near me" searches has dramatically increased in recent years. Local search engine optimization is crucial for modern businesses.
Local SEO is a collection of techniques to make it easier for local users to find your business. Services range from Google services management to website development. A proper SEO plan includes several services that provide a complete profile for your brand. Google My Business and Google Maps are critical pieces of the picture.
What is Google My Business?
Google My Business can be viewed as a business directory maintained by Google or like an expanded yellow pages phonebook. It contains a listing of business name, phone number, address, opening and closing hours, and similar information. It also includes a business summary that is displayed in some search results. The metadata from the listing is also used by other business and phone directories. It is a keystone for the online footprint of your business.
One of the most critical steps is verifying your business with Google. Verified entries get preference for search results and syndication to other directories. It is the method that Google uses to verify that the entry is real. You would be surprised how many managers and owners overlook this vital step. A qualified professional can help assist you with the signup and verification process. They will also ensure that your My Business profile is complete and accurate.
How does Google Maps fit in?
Verified Google My Business entries receive an entry in Google Maps. Google Maps is at the heart of local search results. Map results will often appear before regular search results. You can check out this feature yourself. If you search Google for "restaurants" or "art supplies store" on a mobile phone, you will likely see a list of local businesses in your area. If you click on a few entries, you can easily see which ones are well-managed and which have been neglected. Local results also turn in up in desktop results and influence organic search returns.
A complete listing should include not only their location, hours, phone number, and website, but also pictures, reviews, and a map of their location. Google generally preferences more complete listings over partial entries. Being proactive in claiming and correcting listings in other local and business directories is also important. Businesses with more reputable and accurate listings generally achieve better SERP (search engine results placement).
Targeting Local Customers
If you have a physical location, a local service area or otherwise depend on local customers, the importance of Google services and results cannot be overstated. How often do the people around you look for restaurants, movie times, shops, and other businesses using Google? If you have yet to implement a local SEO plan, you are losing all of those potential customers. People no longer use the phonebook to find what they need. Traditional word of mouth is being displaced by social media and online reviews. Search engines and map services provide a relatively low-cost opportunity to stay relevant and expand your brand reach.
If you search your own local listings, you are likely to find that some of your competitors have at least partial Google My Business and Google Maps entries. There are receiving advertising every time someone does a Google search for your niche in your area. Do not be left behind as the marketplace changes and grows. Seize the opportunity the opportunity to see your enterprise show up in local listings and search results.
Common Pain Points
Search engine optimization and local SEO can seem overwhelming. That is OK. If you need a pipe replaced, you call a plumber. You are not expected to know everything about plumbing. The same is true of SEO. Our team is waiting to help you establish your brand online.
You do not have to struggle alone with headaches of setting up your Google My Business account. Artful Pussycat can help you overcome some of your hurdles, including:
- Difficulties setting up your account and accessing your listing
- Listings inaccurately claimed by or assigned to another
- Duplicate or multiple conflicting listings
- Connecting your Google My Business entry with Google+
- Setting up, optimizing, and managing your Google+ business account
- Proper search results placement
- Proper search results display
- Responding to reviews
In addition to those potential issues, there are also numerous other considerations. Examples include social media footprint, link campaigns, content development, and website design. Local SEO involves a complex mix of factors and strategies. Adding to the complexity, Google is constantly revising and updating their standards and search algorithms. Artful Pussycat can balance various SEO factors and stay abreast of the latest standards.
Why are Google My Business and Google Maps optimization crucial?
Do you have a store, restaurant, or office open to the public? Google has structured their services to promote those who most actively engage with their services. That means businesses that claim their listings, verify their enterprise, and actively manage their brand receive a huge boost in local search.
People are relying more and more on their phones and other mobile devices for web access. Due to GPS and other location services, Google Maps and My Business play a huge role in searches. Due to this trend, Google is weighting their standards to local and mobile experiences. Accurate and verified entries have a strong influence on search results for local businesses. A professionally maintained Google My Business listing is not a mere matter of a directory listing. It is an irreplaceable piece of modern marketing.
Take Your Business to the Next Level
Are you ready to explore your local SEO options with Google Maps and Google My Business? Do you want to stay ahead of your competition and connect with local customers? Get in touch with us today! With Artful Pussycat, you can be assured:
- No extended contracts or long-term commitments required.
- Each client's marketing plan is custom built for your brand and organization. No assembly line plans or one-size-fits-all solutions.
- Personalized service tailored to your goals and needs.
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