How to Rank in Google My Business 2019
First, off I am looking for a quality Google Review on my Google Business Listing – Please review me here https://bit.ly/2UWB3pY if you found this blog article to be of use. And when you leave your review for my Business ie ‘Robb Wallace Media’ please use some nice keywords like “Google My Business advice” “Helped my business” “Marketing expertise” “SEO” etc. This would be much appreciated.
Some Background before we tackle setting up and optimising your Google My Business. Let’s just take a second to put the Google My Business and its importance into context.
Google Drives Traffic
As you know Google drives the most traffic to our businesses and it has its own Google Business listing service called Google My Business or GMB for short. There are lots of things you can do with this. The key thing for small local businesses is to conquer the Google Map Featured Snippet for your search terms. This is a way to outrank an organic search for similar key search terms and grab that top spot on the map pack feature. Currently, Google Map featured snippet lists 3 businesses for any given term.
This is what I am trying to do and you should to, so why should you put the effort into being listed on a featured map via Google My Business in 2019?
Google is Changing
Google is essentially an answer engine, you ask the question and Google will do its utmost to give you the best answer to your questions. It indexes the entire web, billions upon billions of websites, articles, images, videos etc and gives each aspect of each piece of information some secret google ranking factor. Ok you know this and I know this but have you noticed that of late Google no longer just gives you organic results for your question in a scrollable list of what it thinks is the best answer, gradually to what it thinks is the worst answer, sometimes this list can be a million results plus. But this is changing! Traditionally in this search result list, we read the Heading or Tagline and the snippet below the tagline and then quickly decide, oh that’s the one for me, “CLICK” and off you go to their website but Googles Featured snippet is changing the game.
The Featured Snippet
Google’s plan, however, is to answer your question right there on the home page. It takes the best answer from its secret ranking factors and it scrapes the information from the web page that provided that best answer and offers it up to you in a featured post of some sort above the organic results at the same time as delivering the organic results. Thus potential taking away the customers need to click through to the website. Creating a faster more direct route to the answer for the customer, ie without the customer having to go that extra step beyond the Google homepage ie leaving GOOGLE. There are many featured snippets from Google’s dictionary Snippet, Translation, Weight, Map and more. For a full in depth look at just featured snippets check this article out by MOZ. https://moz.com/blog/optimize-featured-snippets
Two studies confirming the power of the featured Snippet and why you should work to get your content featured:
- Ben Goodsell reports that the click-through rate (CTR) on a featured page increased from two per cent to eight per cent once it’s placed in an answer box, with revenue from organic traffic increasing by 677%.
- Eric Enge highlights a 20–30% increase in traffic for ConfluentForms.com while they held the featured snippet for the query.
What’s the best Google Snippet for small business?
Getting your content into any of the featured snippets means your doing things right. However, the very best Google feature for small business in 2019 and beyond is maximising local search and the MAP PACK feature. This appears ‘Above the Fold’ a term that refers to the top half of the page be it on a laptop screen or a smartphone screen. The first thing you see when you search for Plumber or Electrician or Cafe or Garage is a Google map with three locations pins and three business listings underneath that map.
Google My Business “Near Me”
If someone types into Google “Media Consultant”, “Digital MOT”, “Video production Glasgow”, “Fast Website Glasgow”, “Digital MOT near me”, “Media Consultant near me”, or “Video Production near me” or “Media agency Glasgow”. I want my business popping up. I want my business to be in the top three listings and now that Google has the MAP feature so prominent to display local business options directly Above The Fold and the organic SERPs (Search Engine Results Page). So now the key for small businesses is to get onto that map. Some numbers from organic SERPs shows that the Click Through Rates (CTR) for results on page one of google dramatically favour positions 1, 2 and 3 from the 4th result onwards the CTR drops off a cliff. As the old saying goes. “The best place to hide a dead body is on the second page of Google” This may be updated to say “The best place to hide a dead body is just below the featured snippet” or something to that effect, you get the point.
The new MAP Pack feature is even more prominent than the organic results and makes securing one of those three places for your business so important. For a more in depth look at the CTR rates for organic SERPs etc check out this great article by Smart Insights. https://www.smartinsights.com/search-engine-optimisation-seo/seo-analytics/comparison-of-google-clickthrough-rates-by-position/
Ranking on the MAP is independent of good organic SERPs. Some businesses are ranking on the map and are nowhere to be seen on the first page of organic search results. Having great SEO and ranking high for keywords long and short does not automatically equate to good Map listings but it definitely contributes to it and having good SEO is always a great plan.
Ranking Local Map Pack
Ok, get to the goods. How do I rank my business on GMB and what are the factors or the key things that we need to do to achieve Google My Business ranking?
1)Strengthen your SEO ie make your SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) good and focus on your location with keywords and content. Improve everything from site speed, mobile experience, keywords, content, descriptions, onsite technical etc. Make your website clear, fast and friendly. Make it the best place to get the kind of information your prospective customers are looking for.
2) Set up a Google My Business listing with your details. Use all of the features mentioned further on. https://www.google.com/intl/en_uk/business/
3)Citations on all other listing platforms like Yelp, Yellow pages etc. make sure all citations have consistency in NAP (Name, Address, Phone Number) especially if your business has moved location!! This tells Google that the Business is listed in a number of other directories and give weight to your authenticity etc. These citations also send backlinks to your website which is still one of the key ranking signals used by Google.
Setting up your Google My Business Listing.
1)Search for your business if a GMB comes up, claim the exciting listing for your business that has been scrapped from the web by Google or start afresh with the link above.
2)Fill in the info tab ie add your business name, address, contact details (NAP-Name, Address, Phone). Website and any other information this section requires.
3)If you have a physical location excellent if your a website or small business with a service area you can hide your address and just show the service area.
4)Select your business category, for this look at the competition what are they using, is it the most up to date category? Google updates categories all the time, refining the categories, so make sure you keep on top of this.
5)You just need to confirm your location via post (Google send out a card with a code) and boom you’re in, Verified!!
6)Now optimise your listing
Optimising your GMB listing.
1)Citations on other listing sites like Yellow pages, Yelp etc . Make sure your Business name, address and phone number are consistent on each listing.
2)Update all information
3)Add photos to all the photo categories. Interior, exterior, at work, staff etc potential customers want to see your products, your carpark, your staff etc so show them.
4)Add video, everyone loves video.
5)Use the post features to post content about new offers, products, services etc they display in the GMB snippet.
6)Contact all your customers and ask them to leave a review. Ask them to use the keywords of there purchase or service used. And then reply to every review thanking them and using some more keywords, just one or two. Potential customers read reviews and they read the replies to the reviews. This is a great way to get the measure of a business, its products and service, it’s customer service. Positive customer replies show potential customers what sort of quality company you are.
7)Leave reviews to a local business that your businesses use, using your GMB email. Ie I use my Robb Wallace Media Gmail to leave positive reviews at various other business I interact with.
8)The public can suggest edits to your listings and ask questions about your business. Take time to answer these questions and review suggested edits.
9)Download the App via IOS and Android to make managing your GMB listing easier.
Why do this work on Local SEO and GMB? Is it worth it?
1)Being strong in SEO and GMB can help you Rank in one of the 3 available places on the Map. Perfect for when attaining an organic SERP ranking may be difficult.
2)Because building strong Local SEO helps you target prospective customers in your business area.
3)It’s all about ‘near me’ with mobile searches. Plumbers near me, Media Consultant near me etc
4)Your competitors may not focus on their Local SEO or GMB Performance.
5)All of this work will complement your overall Organic SEO performance
Why you should encourage your customers to leave reviews.
1)Its word of mouth and google is watching and ranking what folks are saying about your business and your competitor’s businesses.
2)Lots of good reviews help customers choose your services.
3)Lots of good reviews tell Google that your services are good.
4)More chance of getting on the Map Featured Snippet. Ie if all else is equal and you have 200 5 star reviews and your competitor has 1 you will outrank them.
Hopefully, this has been of some value to you and you can take 2 minutes to leave me a review. Stay awesome
Please review me here https://bit.ly/2UWB3pY
If you want to see how your business is doing online why not have a look at our Digital MOT. It is a digital marketing and online presence audit. I will find the holes in your game and my report will help you get back on track.