Let’s get local
In the age of hyper-convenience, users want to be able to find local businesses that meet their exact needs, as quickly as possible. Whether someone wants to find a hair salon that’s open until 6pm or the best burger in a 5 kilometre radius, Google is the go-to. Helping people find the relevant local businesses is central to the role Google plays in our daily lives – and they’ve been working hard to get better at it.
Google My Business is one of the most important digital business tools you can harness. It uses a combination of supplied and crowd-sourced information to better provide users with exactly what they’re looking for at a glance in search results. This includes (but isn’t limited to) information like business hours, location, contact details, and customer reviews.
When properly harnessed, Google My Business helps you manage how your business appears across the Google-sphere – most notably, in Search and Google Maps. It’s a neat package of information that follows your business across the web. The added benefit (or challenge, depending on how well you manage it) of Google My Business listings is that users immediately give more weight to this information, meaning it can be the reason why users click through to your site, immediately make a booking or give you a call – or skip your business altogether.
Research has shown that 50% of users who completed a local search on their phone, visited a store within a day. In addition, 78% of local mobile searches result in offline purchases. Local searches are high-intent searches – meaning the traffic they generate is not traffic you want your business to miss out on.
Here are some of the tactics the Mickey Llew team use when optimising your online presence for local search:
As with all of our tactics, we start by analysing the data to find the right opportunities. We look at the most popular local search terms related to your business and assess the competition. We also do a deep-dive on user behaviour data to understand which search terms have the highest intent and what the user journey should be for the search queries we believe will result in more business for you.
On the back of identifying the key local search terms relevant to your business, we then go about making sure your site content answers the local search questions best. This is done by both optimising your existing content, and writing new content and landing pages where necessary. This is especially important for businesses with multiple branches.
Claiming and verifying your Google My Business listing
It’s vital to take control of your Google My Business listing to improve your chances of showing up in local search listings and Google Maps. We will help you with this process to make sure your listing has the correct contact details, address and other important information. Based on the type of business you have, we are also able to optimise your listing for conversions with an online booking button or easy query submission. These tools help encourage user action by making it as easy as possible to do, without leaving the Google search environment.
Optimise and maintain
Since a Google My Business listing is created by combining supplied, verified and crowd-sourced information, it’s very important to stay on top of it. Any user who sees your listing has the opportunity to suggest edits to Google. These edits may not always be 100% accurate, depending on who submits them, so Google allows you to query them.
Beyond maintaining the basic operational information about your business, your Google My Business listing also offers the opportunity to create posts which appear as thumbnails in your listing. Posts can include anything from a promotional offer to details about an upcoming event – making them a great tool to build your online profile and encourage users to engage with your business.
Another often overlooked, but vital aspect of your listing is imagery and video. In some industries, search behaviour is leaning increasingly toward being image-based – especially in the hospitality and food industries. By submitting quality multimedia to Google, you can better manage how your brand is viewed across search results – and increase your click-throughs in the process.
Reviews for better rankings
When it comes to digital currency, customer reviews are gold for search rankings. They also form one of the most important aspects of your Google My Business profile. The better your customer reviews, the higher the likelihood new users will engage with your business and click on your listing over another. They’re an excellent marker of quality and trust.
For most businesses, the only challenge with reviews is encouraging customers to submit them. Google makes it incredibly easy, and we can help optimise your customer relationship management to help make completing reviews part of the digital experience of your business.
MickeyLlew is a specialist performance marketing and SEO agency
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