I was recently at a small business conference and they mentioned “Google My Business”. This is a free tool that Google offers that allows your business to be found on Google Maps. Now, of course, I had heard about Google My Business before (it used to be called Google Places a few years back) so this wasn’t new to me. But what I did hear that I didn’t know about was how a certain aspect of it can significantly help your ranking on Google searches.

Google My Business brings Google Plus, Google Local and Google Places for Businesses together in one easy-to-manage place.

It helps to make your business stand out from the rest with all the information that potential and existing customers need to know about your business:

  • Your business name & logo
  • Address, with directions
  • Opening hours
  • Telephone number
  • Photos
  • Customer reviews & ratings

Here’s an example of what comes up when I search for drug stores.

Google My Business also allows you to build a customer/follower base, share content, start conversations and respond to feedback. You can even connect face to face with them using Google Hangouts, or invite them to take a virtual step inside using Google Business View.

What I didn’t know was how much importance Google places on your reviews. If you have 5 or more good reviews on your Google Business the better your search results will be. If you’re looking to optimize your search engine results this is one thing that can’t be overlooked! How do you get those reviews? Ask! The next time you are talking to a customer that has had a great experience with you ask them if they wouldn’t mind giving your business a review on Google.

Successful ranking on Google isn’t about cramming repetitive keywords into your website. It’s about giving your prospects access to the key information that differentiates you from your competition. Google My Business is an easy (and free) first step to help you in that direction.

In my next post I’ll talk about Google Business View!