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Get to Know Google Business Profiles One of the Most Powerful Tools You Need in Your Marketing Toolbox.

Updated: Apr 24


Desktop computer monitor with a Google Business Profile of Simply K2 Marketing that describes her business. A plant sits to the left of the monitor

To succeed in business you really need to be searchable and found.

Remember if a prospect can’t find you, they can’t hire you or buy from you.

So… how visible are you when your customers are searching for you?

Can they find you when they “Google you” and what will they find?

 

I get so many questions about Google Business Profiles (GBP) and why a business needs one. In marketing, it’s all about being seen where your target audience live, buy, and search. Today where they search is Google with over 80 Billion searches per month. (Yep Billion). Having a GBP is simply a fundamental part of running your business, large or small. I like to think of them as a detailed billboard about your business on the side of the internet highway

 

Today I’m going break down the basics of Google Business Profiles and why you need one, no matter if you have a brick and mortar or online business.  

 

What is a Google Business Profile


It is a “formal,” free, business listing on Google. Your business profile appears in the results when your business name, category, or words associated with your business are searched. (Where it appears in those search results depends on how well you’ve crafted your profile, popularity of the keywords you've used, your business category and even considers your competition.)  Profiles also show up in Google Maps.


Note: In order to create, own or edit your GBP you will need to create a Google account. However, you can (though they don’t outwardly say this) use your current email to do so vs. needing to create a Gmail account.

 

What Information Makes Up a Google Business Profile

  1. Your business name, a description of what your business is, does and the category/industry you fall into.

  2. The description should include searchable keywords and phrases 

  3. Contact information including hours, phone and/or email.

  4. Website link (It is OK if you don’t have one yet, though preferred. There is also an option to create a page via Google if you choose.)

  5. Reviews from your customers

  6. Images of your physical business, team, logo, and offerings. (e.g., if you were a restaurant you would include photos of your menu and food; if you’re a retailer, photos of products, the store etc.) Customers can also add images to your profile as part of their reviews.

  7. Products Optional. You can sell products through Google’s Merchant Center which is an additional set up outside of your GBP.

  8. Post (An Update, Offer or Event) – Looks similar to a Google Ad (or even a Instagram post). I'll share more about Google Ads in a future Blog post.

  9. Verification: A verified account tells visitors that Google has proven that you are the true owner and what you’ve shared about your business is correct. Verification also allows owners to make updates and edits to their profile that are searchable and seen. (If you are not verified updates are not always shared.)   

 

Tip: the information you share in Google should match and be consistent with the information that you share on your website. This helps your listing to show up closer up the top of their Search Engine Results Pages (SERP). It also strengths your brand messaging – and you know, I’m all about that!

 

Searchable Keywords and Phrases


Keywords are searchable words and phrases that someone would enter into a search engine to find your business or services, or businesses like yours. They are part of your SEO or Search Engine Optimization strategy to promote your business.


You want to use both popular and specific keywords and phrases, as well review and potentially use words that your top competitors are using. A good SEO strategy strengths your profile and get your business listing to appear as one of the first on the search engine results page (SERP). Ideally this is the first page of the search results, following the paid Google ads. 

 

Tip: SEO does not end with Google Business Profiles. It’s critical to implement within your business website. Google scrolls/searches your website for keywords and phrases you use in your site to compare against your GBP, and these are factored in to where you show up in the SERP. We’ll address SEO strategy in a future post as well.

 

Google Reviews


Probably the most component of a profile. Google Reviews are star-rated (1-5 stars with 5 being the best) feedback and reviews people leave about your business. Most often you see reviews shared for retailers, restaurants and home improvement services like plumbers, electricians, landscapers etc. but every business profile is eligible to get reviews. Reviews can be really powerful for your business.


In January, it was reported that 81% read the Google Reviews before making a purchase; most consumers need to read a minimum of four.  But remember, unfortunately some customers will only leave a review when they have been disappointed by “your” service.  While you cannot delete bad reviews, you do have the opportunity to address them with a reply and try to make things right or share your side of the story.

 

What is a Google Post


Often the most overlooked part of a profile, even mine could use a refresher, this is an Update about your business or services, an Offer or Event your business is hosting). It looks similar to a Google Ad but is FREE. Some also think it looks like an IG post with an image and caption underneath.  


Now that I've broken down the profile basics, let's talk about why you need one.


The Top 5 Reasons You Need to Create a Google Business Profile.


  1. Google is the most used search engine platform in the world with over 80.08 Billion average searches per month. Trust me, people are looking for you here!



teal, white and black graphics and text sharing the amounth of monthly search visits and percentage of visits by desktop, mobile phone and tablet
Google Search Usage graphic


2. Provides legitimacy for your business and keeps you competitive, especially when

your account has been verified. Some say that if you don’t have a Google Profile and

a website your business doesn’t exist.


3.  It’s a free, powerful behind-the-scenes marketing and lead generator tool. It serves as a mini online billboard for your business that never quits providing information or sending prospects your way while you focused on other marketing efforts.

4. You cannot run Google Ads without one which are some of the most effective digital ads you can run.

5. You can use it to sell your products online. If you don’t have a site yet, you can set up a merchant account and start selling your products fairly quickly on Google.


Do you have a Google Business Profile? How has it helped you?


What questions can I answer for you about Goggle Business Profiles? Drop your questions in the comments.


Google Business Profiles are really the little engine that could. There are so many more tips and tricks that I could share, but today I wanted to focus on the basics. I will be sharing more information about this valuable tool, SEO, Google Ads soon. Stay tuned.


Need help creating or updating your Google Business Profile? This is is one of the services Simply K2 Marketing offers to small businesses. Reach out if I can be of assistance.


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