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  • Writer's pictureLeedr

How to use Google Business to get more customers for free.

Updated: Mar 22, 2023

Google Ads aren't the only way you can be seen by potential customers. Google Business is a way to shortcut your competitors and it's free. Here's everything you need to know to get on Google Business.

What is it

Google Business (which used to be known as Google My Business) is a free profile on Google for businesses that either has a physical location that customers can visit, or travels to where they are, like a cafe or dog washing service.

The profile is a place where you can display important information about your business to potential customers such as photos, reviews, service/product descriptions, opening hours and links to things like your website, menu, or booking links.

Your Google Business profile displays higher in search results, usually on a map along with similar businesses. Potential customers can quickly click through to learn more and switch between businesses so it’s important to include relevant information and keep updating things such as images.

Why is it important

A Google Business Profile makes sure that people can find your business when they’re searching for products or services like yours in their local area - without it, potential customers will only see your competitors! Potential customers can quickly and easily evaluate your business against similar ones in the area and contact you directly on desktop or mobile, reducing friction.

A Google Business Profile also improves your local SEO. It does this by increasing the click-through rate (CTR) for your website, and by showing direct links to your individual products and services. Sharing posts to your profile is also a great way to keep up-to-date, and relevant, and have increased visibility in search rankings. Just make sure you’re using keyword-friendly content.

Reviews are the best way to create trust, credibility and social proof. They’re the best way for new customers to know how good you are and feel comfortable transacting with you. Something to remember is that you can’t pick and choose the reviews - it’s warts and all. This means that you might get some negative reviews from customers, but you can respond and Google will actually rate a business with mixed but overall positive reviews higher than a profile with 100% positive reviews.

How to set it up

Only owners of the business or authorised representatives can set up a Google Business profile.

Anyone can create a profile for a business on Google. It usually happens when someone wants to leave a review of a business on Google and the business doesn’t already have a profile. Anyone can then add reviews, ask questions and chat with other users on that Business profile. That means your business might already have a profile on Google out there right now.

If you are the owner of a business that already has a Google Business profile, you can claim your business profile if it already exists on Google and even merge duplicate profiles.

  1. Create a Google Business account (this is what you use to claim, create, and manage your businesses or locations)

  2. Create a profile for your business (this is what displays in search)

Once you add your business, you’ll need to choose the category of business, and location, fill in the contact info, and the most important step is to verify your business. You can do this in a couple of ways.

  1. Have a postcard sent to your physical address, or

  2. Ask for a phone call to the number on your Business profile.

Either of these will give you a five-digit code which you can enter to verify your profile and get it live.

What can you do with your profile?

Engage with your customers:

Customers can ask you questions or leave comments on your profile and with your Google Business profile, you can respond and even enable direct messaging. Your Google Business account can even add updates like you would when you post to your business's Facebook or Instagram.

Once you start receiving questions from your customers, you can create a Q&A section on your profile with answers to the most popular questions too.

Ask for reviews:

Google gives you a direct link that you can send to customers to encourage them to leave a review for your business. You can add this to thank you emails, follow-up SMS, or to your receipts. To find this, go to your dashboard, and scroll down to the Share Review Form button.

Add special content based on your business type:

Google gives you the ability to add content depending on your business type. For example, if you’re a restaurant or cafe, you can upload your menu in a dedicated menu section on your profile. Service businesses can display a list of their services for customers to choose from. And call to action buttons can be customised to link to your appointment or reservation bookings. Or you can add the products you sell from a physical store (let’s talk more about that).

Sell products:

If you sell physical products, you probably already have them on Google Shopping - and now they’ll appear here too. The good news is that if you don’t know what I’m talking about when I say “Google Shopping”, if you upload your products to your profile, they’ll appear there too. Just go to the dashboard, click Products, and start adding.

Get insights:

The Google Business account gives you some really good insight into the number of people visiting your profile, and what they do when they get there, like request directions, click to call you, etc.

Done for you:

As easy as this all is, sometimes you just don’t have the hours in the day to do it all yourself. Leedr can set up your profile, populate your important information, and images and even make it optimised for SEO.

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