Google Plus Local | Small Business Places Listing Guide
Following keyword research and onsite optimization, the next important step is to set up or claim your business Google Plus Local listing. There is an array of reasons as to why claiming Google local business listing is so important. First this is your company brand and will represent you not only to local customers but to the world. Think about the fact that people are using smart devices, phones and tablets at unheard of numbers. So you can count on near 90% of people do search for local business listings on the fly. It is critical for any local business to claim and fill their Google Places listing correctly and with as much detail as possible to ensure a good customer experience.
Google Places listing and How to Make Your Business Stand Out
Always list your local phone number, not an 800 number because Google can use your phone number to recognize where your business is located and therefore more easily list your business in the local business results for various search queries in your area.
Google will check your phone number once more to see if they already have your information. Since they do not, you will come to this page where you can start to fill out your Google business listing. The more information you can fill out this Google local business listing with, the better. Be sure to make sure it is accurate and matches the information on your website. In the description area, you will want to include up to 2-3 of your priority keywords. You only have 200 words for the description area, so it might be best to create a standard local search listing description as a template when creating your Google business listings.
Category aspect is important because it has been highlighted as one of the most important factors in the Google Local Search ranking algorithm. Take some time to think about the best categories for your business. This is actually required now whereas it did not used to be. This is an indication of how important your local business categories are.
Local Small Business Website
Including your website is essential. This is all part of branding your company and its web presence. While it is not required here, it should be! It is a link back to your website. Your customers need a way to get to your site. Make it easy for them. Make sure your website is user friendly, easy to navigate and provides a good customer experience.
Local Business Service Areas
If the business address is an office, it is ideal to go ahead and list it for maximum optimization and visibility. A visible address in a Google local business listing is an additional indicator to other search engines that the business has been verified and it matches what is listed on the business website and in other listings.
To show customers where the business provides its services, Google Places has a field to list cities served. As cities are entered in this area, a red shadow will cover the area on the map. Do not list cities that you don’t service just to show up in the Google local business listings. This is providing a disservice not only to the person searching for the service but to the business owner when that person gets upset and writes a negative review on the listing calling the business out for doing this.
Something very important to keep in mind is that Google is going to show the results in the Map results that are closest to the centroid of the city being search. This is not something that a business owner can control and it is not worth engaging in black-hat practices in order to show up in cities in which you do not do business. The search engines have become very savvy to that behavior and are proactively penalizing those businesses.
Hours and Payment Option
Again, filling out your Google local listing with valuable information is very important and will help your customers get to know your business.
Photos and Videos
The search engines love a variety of content on your website, so why wouldn’t Google love photos and videos on your Google local listing? Add relevant photos and videos to your business. Any photos or videos that would add to your website or YouTube channel are great content to add to your Google local business listing.
SEO and Search Engine Marketing Strategy
Any additional information that can be provided to customers will be both valuable for them and for your rankings. Include anything here that you feel is important for your potential customers to know when visiting your online business. If you have multiple locations, you can add up to 10 to Google Places. Be sure to add any information that is specific to these locations including the address, phone number, hours and products and services that might be unique to that location. This is also an opportunity to add some different keywords to each Google local business listing.
It is absolutely imperative that you have consistency in all of your online marketing strategies. The same goes with your website. It is vital that the information on the Google local business listing matches what is found on the website, verbatim. Also you want the business name and contact information to be on every page, and readable. Having it in the footer should be fine on this one.
As a local small business owner you must make sure your Google Local listings are accurate and informative. This will have a huge impact on how potential new customers will view your business. Here at TeamDigitalMarketing.com we are experts in helping local small business owners in aspects of doing business on the web. We can help with all your Google listings, search engine optimization, local internet marketing strategies, video marketing as well as experts in social media marketing which all business need to grow their business. Call Team Digital Marketing today: 888-792-0104