What is Google My Business and Why is it So Important?

Let’s imagine you are the proud owner of a brick-and-mortar bakery. You just happen to make the most insanely delicious cupcakes in the city, and the people who have indulged in your confectionery delights can attest to that. But what about someone who’s new to the area, or someone who might just be visiting who has a craving for awesome cupcakes? Studies show that four out of five of those potential customers turn to Google to find local businesses. And if you have a fully optimized Google My Business (GMB) listing, your business will come up in those searches and display all the details needed; from where you’re located to what kind of ratings you have and what your hours are. And that’s just the beginning.

A Google My Business listing helps Google parse out important information in a variety of different ways.

Not unlike a business directory such as Yelp or Trip Advisor, GMB helps people find you, learn more about you, and make an informed buying decision. Where GMB stands apart is in the incredible amount of traffic it gets. Google is, by far, the most popular search engine in the world with over 75% of market share. Therefore, it is one of the most important elements in search engine optimization (SEO).

Whether it’s a pin on a map or a conversation on the Google Q&A on your listing, Google My Business is an important tool to begin brand building long before a new customer crosses the threshold (either physically or virtually) of a bakery, gym, retail shop, or any other type of business or service provider.

Even though you’re a baker extraordinaire, and not a digital marketing agency professional, setting up your Google My Business page is not complicated.There are several online guides to help walk you through the process. But, if you are not comfortable going it alone, don’t let that stop you from seeking assistance in setting up your GMB page.It’s THAT important to your business.

Credibility at first glance with Google My Business Details

Say that person with a craving for cupcakes who just arrived in town was told by someone that your bakery has the best cupcakes in town. So, they search for your business by name. What pops up are all the details about your business - a complete snapshot of a street view, your location on a Google map, your reviews and ratings, a link to your website, directions to your location, your hours of operation, and an address and phone number. There is also a Q&A section and a rating of reviews from other locations on the web like Facebook.

Google Maps and The Google Local Packs are valuable tools.

Let’s say our cupcake aficionado didn’t know your business name, so they just searched for “cupcakes near me”. They are likely to see a Google Map and a Google Local Pack, which are the first three listings that appear under the Google Map. These listings feature star ratings, number of reviews, website, direction links, the business phone number and hours of operation. These top listings don’t appear randomly. Rather, Google seeks information from GMB listings that fit with your search term, and rewards those businesses with those top three spots who have complete profiles and lots of positive reviews. Be sure to verify your business location by claiming it on Google Maps.

Google My Business is an important foundation for your online presence.

Not only can GMB help people find you, it also serves to help establish your brand authority and set you apart from your competition. How does it do this?

1. By making it easier for customers to find and reach you.

2. By marketing your brand to a larger clientele.

3. By reducing operation costs as GMB works like a silent salesman.

4. By building stronger customer relationships.

5. By helping to identify your competition and monitor their business strategies.

So, be sure to go in and either claim or setup your GMB listing. If you need help, St. Petersburg-based digital marketing agency Thompson Marketing Partners has helped business of all types and sizes expand and refine their online presences through proven SEO strategies. We offer a full range of digital marketing agency services and are experts in developing and executing strategic digital marketing solutions that help clients reach their marketing goals. To learn more, visit http://www.thompsonmarketingpartners.com.

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