What is Google My Business, does my business actually need it and why is it great for local marketing?

Are you scratching your head right now, wondering what on earth am I about to tell you, or are you one of many businesses that has already claimed their Google My Business (GMB) listing and are speaking directly to your customers within the Google search results page? 

Disclaimer: I love working with Google products to help businesses and not-for-profits be found by customers on Google. 

In this article, I’m going to cover all the things you need to know about Google My Business, including:

  • What Google My Business is,
  • The benefits of using Google My Business, and
  • How to get started using Google My Business.

But firstly, some stats: 

  • Google is the world’s largest search engine and accounts for just over 90% of all searches conducted worldwide, while Bing has about 7% of the global search market. (statista.com)
  • 3.5 billion Google searches are made every day. (Internetlivestats.com)
  • Search volume is growing by roughly 10% each year, and on average between 15-20% are brand new searches. (Internetlivestats.com)
  • 68% of online experiences begin with a search engine. (brightedge.com)
  • 76% of people who search for a business nearby visit within 24 hours. (backlinko.com)
  • 76% of consumers trust online reviews as much as they trust personal recommendations. (backlinko.com)
  • 86% of people look up the location of a business on Google Maps, and searches including the terms “where to buy” and “near me” have increased by 200% since 2017. (backlinko.com)

What is Google My Business?

Google My Business is a free online account which allows you to manage and promote your business and website directly within Google Search and Google Maps, in addition to the links to your website.

The results entered within this online account are then visible when users search for your brand or brand + location within the Google Business Profile.

What are the benefits of Google My Business? 

Google My Business gives you the power to attract and engage customers when they search for your business on Google. 

  • Manage your business information
    • Manage the information that Google users find when they search for your business or the products and services you offer. 
    • When people find your business on Google maps and search, they can find information like your hours, website, and street address.
  • Interact with your customers
    • You can read and respond to reviews from your customers. 
    • Post photos that show off what you do. 
    • Businesses that add photos to their business listings receive 42% more requests for directions on Google Maps, and 35% more clicks through to their websites than businesses that don’t. (google.com).
  • Understand and expand your local presence
    • Find insights to learn how customers search for your business, and where they come from. 
    • Learn how many users call your business directly from the phone number displayed on local search results in Search and Maps.

Why would my business need it? Who is it best suited for? 

As long as you own either a store-front or you’re a service-based business, you can claim a Google My Business listing. 

If however, your business is fully online without a physical address that you share with your users online, then you are unable to claim a Google My Business listing. (google.com)

Should my business use Google My Business if I already have a website?

Absolutely. Your free Google business listing complements your website by adding more visibility to your current business website on Google Search and Google Maps. 

How much does Google My Business cost?

It is free for everyone. 

How will it help my local marketing efforts? 

If a user is searching for a product or service, they may need or want that to be available near them now, or in the future. As Google My Business is tied into Google Maps, a user can decide, based on the information provided to them in the search results, if that business is a good fit for them or not. 

Ok, I’m interested, but what’s next? 

Firstly, go to Google search and search for your business name. If you see a large rectangular box on the right hand side (desktop search), or a square box with your details on mobile, then you have the option to “claim” your business listing. Simply click on the “Own this business?” blue link. 

If, however, you do not have a listing available, you can create a new listing by visiting https://www.google.com/intl/en_au/business/ and clicking the blue “manage now” button. Follow the prompts to create your first listing. 

Where will your listing show? 

  • Google Search (Business Profile) – the rectangular box to the right of the search search results and the first square box of information on a mobile device.  
  • Google Search (Local Map Pack) – features a map of business locations along with listings for 2-3 businesses relevant to a particular search. 
  • Google Maps – a user can interact with a business listing when they click on a red Google pin, or directly within the Google Maps app. For example, when they are seeking directions to a location. 

I’ve created my Google My Business listing, where to now? 

How complete and accurate your business profile is will impact its ability to rank in Google search. 

Where possible, provide the requested information in every section of your Google My Business account and keep it updated and accurate as your business evolves. 

Get started with Google My Business today

I encourage all members of the Mundaring Chamber of Commerce to claim your listing today (if you haven’t done so already) and to start playing around with its features. 

Add some photos, respond to a review and ensure your business details are all up-to-date.

Remember, almost 70% of all online experiences start in Google search. If you can further increase your presence here, it can only make it easier for your customers to find you online, buy your product, or enlist your service. 

<About the Author>

Naomi Fuller is a digital marketer, specialising in Google Search. With almost 10 years of experience, Naomi helps businesses and not-for-profit companies find the right customer at the right time for leads, enquiries and sales. 

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