National SEO prides itself on being an SEO agency that continually adjusts its processes in order to expand, develop, and maximize optimization. By developing our own system of SEO campaigns and SEO audits, and establishing multiple on/off-page best practices, we have maintained an influential position in the SEO industry. One of the best methods of off-page optimization we frequently find ourselves working with is Google My Business (GMB) optimization.
In simple terms, Google My Business is a tool that Google created that gives business owners the ability to list their products, services, or businesses on Google. When the business or a similarly themed service is searched, Google displays results both on Google Maps and search engine results pages (SERPs). The higher your business ranks, the more traffic generated towards your site and the more new customers you acquire. Utilizing SEO best practices to increase your rankings is a great additional avenue for businesses to maximize their SEO potential.
At National SEO, our GMB optimization method enables you to maximize your listings by strategically using images, thematic keywords, and geo-tags to create a criterion that generates big results. Let’s look a little deeper into the aspects of this criteria to better understand the method behind maximizing Google My Business.
In simple terms, Google My Business is a tool that Google created that gives business owners the ability to list their products, services, or businesses on Google.
Step 1: Edit business information.
Once logged on to the business or brand’s Google account, access business details and ensure that all available information (i.e., contact information, address, email address, phone number, hours of business, etc.) are correct and remain consistent throughout the Web. Inconsistencies can portray a lack of business professionalism to potential customers, and/or hinder a customer’s ability to contact you and access your business’s services.
Next, add additional categories that reflect what your business is, or what services you offer. Google will utilize search queries for the categories listed on your site and rank them in comparison to other businesses on Google.
Step 2: Illustrations.
Start your search for illustrations, aiming to gather three to five images for each Google My Business image tab (Exterior, Interior, At Work, and Team), and ensure your photo content is directly related to your business, offered service, or available product. You can either gather pictures directly from the site you are optimizing for, or consider getting pictures from a stock photo site. Aim to upload three to five images for each of the four previously mentioned image tabs.
Step 3: Use your keywords.
In the beginning stages of all well-thought-out SEO campaigns, thematic keyword research is conducted, and these keywords are used to construct the foundation of SEO. This same crucial step is just as integral in Google My Business optimization as it is for general SEO.
Begin by taking the photos acquired in step two, and start renaming them using targeted keywords. For example, an image titled photo.jpg could be renamed SEO-consultant.jpg. Use thematic keywords with the most search volume first, and work your way down your list of targeted keywords. Once each photo is renamed, open the “Get Info” section for the image and add all of the keywords used to the “Add Tags” section. (Please note that the “Get Info” tag is only applicable to Mac computers).
Step 4: Geo-tags.
A geo-tag is an electronic tag that assigns a geographical location to a photograph or video. Geo-tagging is important in Google My Business optimization because it confirms to Google that you are in fact a local business to your intended area, allowing you to increase rankings in local searches.
Most smartphones and modern cameras will affix geo-coordinates to images automatically, but if needed a tool such as Geoimgr will allow you to manually geo-tag a photo. Begin by entering the exact name and address of your business, which will allow the tool to generate precise longitude and latitude coordinates. Drop your images from step two into the upload area, and once fully uploaded, click the “Write EXIF Tags” button. Next, re-download the photos and replace all old photos with the newly geo-tagged photos.
Step 5: Post pictures and upvote.
For your last step, upload your optimized photos to your Google+ page. Click the “Get Info” button and input the business address, an associated social media or homepage URL, and two targeted keywords in the “Comment” section. For example, each uploaded photo should contain the following information:
City, State, Zip Code
Homepage or Social Media URL
Using the same criteria you used for keywords in step three, start with the highest search volume keywords first, and work your way down your list until each photo has two attached keywords. Alternate between using social media and homepage URLs, and post your photos to Google+. Once uploading is complete, refresh your page and give each newly uploaded photo a +1.
SEO best practices encourage regular upkeep and routine maintenance of your GBM page.
Last, but Certainly Not Least: Regular GMB Maintenance
Remember, just because your initial Google My Business optimization is done does not mean that all of your work is done too. SEO best practices encourage regular upkeep and routine maintenance of your GBM page. To conclude this article, we will highlight a few quick and easy ways to ensure your GBM page is always up to date.
First, take advantage of social media outlets that are free and have the potential to reach a large volume of potential clients. Ideally, satisfied customers leave positive feedback in the form of good reviews, comments, or likes on various social media platforms, enticing other followers to become customers. Additionally, social media also displays a “social footprint” to Google, where Google can connect a business’s presence on various social media outlets and link them to a GBM page.
Secondly, don’t hesitate to ask for feedback and Google reviews from previous or current customers. Reviews both qualify and quantify your customers’ satisfaction. For example, if you have a large volume of positive reviews, potential customers can assume that you are a well-established and popular business in the area, and they can have a good representation of your customer service, product specifications, and overall customer experience just by reading your reviews. Plus, in regards to search results, higher reviews will boost your rankings past other local competition.
Go ahead, try your hand at Google My Business optimization and reach your full SEO potential!