Google Local business is a listing aimed towards local businesses where users can get place recommendations, publish their own photos and reviews, view a business’ Google map or google search page with posts and other useful information. It is important for ranking, and for your customers, that your GMB listing is filled out as completely as possible. If it isn’t filled out entirely, it can be penalized by Google’s ranking algorithm. Also, customers are less likely to trust the information on a local listing, if it’s not complete. Your listing should have:
Google Knowledge Graph
The box containing business information that appears in the top-right hand corner of Google search results on desktop, and near the top on mobile, when someone performs a branded search for your business (i.e. when they search your business name).
Google My Business (GMB) is a Google business listing that allows your company information to be output by Google in a variety of different results.
We all know Google, and how it has its fingers in every part of the online pie, but what is Google My Business?
Google My Business (commonly known as GMB, and formerly known as Google Local and Google Places) is a business listing on Google, not unlike listings on online business directories such as Yelp. It’s also a core element of local SEO. If you’ve not set yours up yet, you’ll find out how to put your business on Google here.
What Is Google My Business Useful For?
When users search for localized keywords or terms using Google, they’re presented with relevant local business results, all tailored to the search term used. These searches can happen in a variety of places, including.
These searches can happen in a variety of places, including:
- Google app search
- Google search in third-party browser or Google Chrome (mobile/desktop)
- Google Maps in mobile/desktop browser
- Google Maps app
- Google Home voice search
- Google Assistant voice search
To qualify for a Google business listing, you must personally interact with your customers during the business hours you include in your listing.
You can work with your customers at your physical place of business or at the customer’s location. That means that even Service Area Businesses (also known as SABs), like plumbers, house painters and pest control experts, for whom physical address isn’t as important, can claim their Google My Business listings and define the area they serve without it being tied to their address.
Bear in mind that while most businesses which interact face-to-face with customers can claim a Google My Business listing, there are a few exceptions.
Google My Business is now the most important touch point in a local search, and many local business transactions can happen without the searcher ever visiting the business’s website, a website is still crucial to getting across your brand’s personality and provide examples of excellent customer experiences, amongst other things.
A local business website’s requirements will shift drastically based on the industry type, with hotels needing high-quality design and photography, and plumbers needing prominent contact info, lists of services and customer testimonials. So we’ll admit that some businesses definitely need a website more than others.
However, no matter what industry you’re in, Google is likely to find a way to use information on your site to feed new features in SERPs, the Local Pack, your Google business listing and more. Just look at on-site review star ratings now appearing in SERPs. This is a taster of what Google can do with information from your site, provided you create it and keep it up to date and consistent with all your other business listings.
Setting up your Google My Business profile is just the start of your local marketing journey. Competition is rife, no matter how niche your business is, so it’s crucial that you have the local SEO tools on hand to help you understand your local search presence.
That’s true of your website as well as your Google My Business listing (remember that the Local Pack appears above organic search results for local searches and is only made up of Google listings), so you’ll want a toolset that gives you an overview of how both are performing.
Riyansh Web Solutions is a Local Search Rank Checker, Local Search Audit, and Google My Business Audit are great ways to get this up-to-date and accurate performance data for you or your clients.
Research & Analysis
Google My Business is getting much more sophisticated, and no longer simply relies on the information you provide to build your listing. If you’re a restaurant, for example, it may attempt to find a web page containing your menu (potentially even from an unverified, third-party site) and add the link to your profile. This shows that it’s important to keep an eye on unsolicited changes to your listing.