It’s been talked about on this blog before, but it’s high time to address the subject again: How is your free Google Maps/ local business listing doing? What do people see when they search for you locally or within Google Maps? If you don’t have any local listings and/or have no idea what they are, please read this great local search primer from my colleague Kurt Krejny. Then you can log in to your Google Local Business Center listing.
Differentiate Yourself From Your Closest Competitors
- Add customized business categories (in the early days this was not possible). Give your niche business the right category. What’s that you say, there’s no category for fantasy football player insurance? Create one!
- Add customized additional details fields. Have a good BBB rating? This would be the place to show it off.
- Add a printable coupon for local business; use new functionality to link to it from your blog, Facebook page or other profile.
- Add videos (up to 5) and images (up to 10).
- SUPER TIP: Encourage satisfied customers to post reviews: instruct them to click on the “Write a review” link on your page’s public listing. A simple but effective 2-sentence review can work wonders for your image … plus you’ll get star power. The better the reviews you have, the more stars will show up right next to the “reviews” link, which is located prominently near your business name. Can you max out with 5 dazzling stars? Talk about standing out from your competitors!
- Make sure your vital contact details–location, address, phone/fax numbers–are correct. Read an instructive tale (again, courtesy of Kurt Krejny) of how an incorrect Google Local listing can frustrate your customers and what you can do about it.
- Finally, get analytical. See the “dashboard” tab and use the new “Insights” data to map the zip codes from which people are requesting driving directions, see how many people are clicking through to your website, and discover what keywords are getting your local listing impressions in Google’s results.
Now, get out there and think globally locally. Get the most out of your Google Local listing.