Planet Google has grown to be colossal, gigantic, immeasurable, in fact, and it can have an equally huge impact on the success of your small business if you have the know-how. As we all know by now, online visibility and a strong digital reputation are key to expanding your reach and engaging your audience, which is exactly why you need to be taking advantage of a nifty little thing known as Google My Business.
In its seemingly successful endeavour to take over the world, Google has a few trusty sidekicks known to us mere mortals as smartphones and mobile devices. These wonderful inventions mean consumers are now spending more and more time on search engines like Google on account of increased accessibility and convenience. Google is arguably the ringleader of the search engine pack so it pays to get on its good side, quite literally. If you take advantage of its many services, including Google My Business, you increase your chances of climbing the search result ranks. These search results turn into traffic, traffic turns into sales and sales turn into profit – magic!
So what exactly is Google My Business?
Google My Business is your very best friend. It is an online service that works by centralising your Google presence onto one screen to include other digital profiles like Google+, Google Maps and of course, Google Search. Free to use, this feature is priceless when it comes to keeping your existing customers on side and more importantly, attracting new custom. It’s also mobile-friendly so customers can Google you on the go, driving more and more visitors to your online pages.
GMB (for short) means you can update your details on any Google account via this central screen so you can ensure all of your pages are all up to date and running efficiently. For example, if you change your GMB address details, the service will alter your Google Maps location accordingly. This certainly makes life simpler for you as the business owner but it means customers can find and keep in touch with you more easily.
Everyone’s a winner baby
Wait – the advantages don’t end there! Not only are you making your online presence stronger and making it easier for your customers to interact with your brand, GMB also has some pretty handy features at the backend that you can reap the benefits of. No doubt you’re simply ready and raring to go with creating your Google My Business page so we’ll make this one simple with a list of the top services that come as a neat little GMB package.
- Google+ – This is Google’s very own social networking site and is rather how you might imagine the love child of Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn – not quite as unidirectional as LinkedIn but definitely with less cat memes than the first two. Here you can post content, photos, links, videos, events and join a whole host of different communities so you can really go about spreading the word. The more active you are on Google, the more likely you are to get noticed so get posting but make sure your content is relevant and attractive to your target market.
- Reviews – Customers just love seeing what other customers have to say and online reviews hold some serious weight in influencing the modern day consumer. We’ve all done it, tapped a new restaurant into Google and come across a string of reviews that cite disgusting customer service or a treacherous broken toilet seat and decided against it after all. Well you can bet your bottom dollar that your customers are doing exactly the same thing and this useful service allows you to manage and respond reviews whether positive or negative.
- Google Insights and Analytics – A lot like Insights but a little more in depth, this feature is key to cracking your online presence and SEO status. Analytics will enable you to track website traffic, show visit statistics, analyse page views, highlight trends and establish which functions your customers are finding most useful, just to name a few. Without attaining this type of information, how would know which marketing tactics were working and which strategies you were pouring time and money into were actually completely fruitless?
- Google Hangouts – Last but by no means least, Google Hangouts is an innovative service that enables you to engage in multi-way conversations with customers, clients and competition alike. Not dissimilar to services like Skype, Hangouts allows business owners to interact with their customers on a more personal basis and offer a whole new level of customer service.