Google My Business: Tips to Optimize and Rank in 2019

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In this video, we will be going over how to create, manage, and optimize a complete Google My Business Listing. This is crucial for any small business owner operating locally or online.

What is Google My Business?
If you run a small business, whether online or locally, it is imperative that you have a Google My Business account. This platform allows small businesses to manage their presence in Google’s search engine. To allow customers to find your location, certain information such as your phone number, address, and operating times can be displayed. Along with this, reviews (which users may consider as a social confirmation) is also displayed in the form of a rating of out of 5 stars and written content.

Why is Google My Business Important?
Have you considered that about 3-5 of the first listings that come up on when you search on Google get 75% of the clicks. This is because users demand information that can be easily accessed, and very fast. Businesses that can provide information that users are searching for – such as a recipe or a how-to-guide, have the opportunity to rank well, if correctly done. Local Search Engine Optimization (SEO) specialists work with online marketing firms and use various techniques to get their clients to rank higher in Google. Some of those are outlined below.

Google My Business Categories
In a recent article by Search Engine Land, proper Google My Business categories are the #3 factor for local SEO optimization. They took the liberty of highlighting some important elements that I have summarized below.

Google removes and adds new categories
Since new various services and products come and go because of market trends, it is important for Google to optimize their categories in order to accurately reflect the types of businesses that users are operating. For example, in the first half of 2018, 34 categories were added and 36 were removed. “Fitness Class” was added and “Dog Sitter” was removed, to give you an example.

New categories can help you rank better
There are various examples online of businesses that were able to rank extremely fast because Google had added a new category. Rich Owens of Local Is Where It’s At provided an example of how he worked with an escape room to help their local SEO strategy. Since Google had only recently added the term ‘Escape Room’ to their categories, and there wasn’t much competition for it, he was able to help this client reach the first page of Google, seemingly overnight.

Primary category is more weighted than secondary
The primary category of any business listing always has more weight given than the secondary. An easy way to select what your primary listing should be is by asking yourself what your business “is” rather than what it “has”.

Free Website
If you currently don’t have a website, GMB offers a free (but you have to pay for the domain) website that is SEO and mobile friendly. The updates from Google are automatically integrated into the website allowing you more time to focus on the business and not having to optimize the GMB website.

Google Posts
On Google, you can post up to 300-word posts to promote your business, events, coupons, etc. You can also ask customers to make reservations or sign up, among other CTA (Call-to-Action).

Having a good, optimized GMB listing is crucial in order for your listing to compete on Google Maps and list higher than your competitors. This will allow for your business to possibly receive more leads.

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