Top Google Business Profile Optimizations

April 22, 2022

Google Business Profiles, formally known as Google My Business, is a listing platform for local businesses. Having a Google listing is what allows your company to show up in local Google searches and on Google Maps.

Why Manage Your Business Listings?

Ever been unsure where you wanted to go out to eat and you ended up Googling “restaurants near me” or “food near me”? If so, you would’ve been served a list of local restaurants to choose from, these listings are the restaurants’ Google Business Profiles. When you saw one that looked interesting, you likely did a quick scroll through the pictures to see if the food looked good, checked out the rating, then clicked directions. If the business had not set up their listings and been managing it, you wouldn’t have ever seen it. Managing your business listing is important regardless what industry (e.g. agriculture, automotive, hospitality) your business is in. A well-managed Google Business Profile listing makes your company 5 times more visible and reputable.


Start With The Basics


- Business Name

One of the most important parts of setting up your Google Business Profile is making sure the business name is listed correctly. If the name isn’t listed correctly, it can make it difficult for Google to verify your business and it will also be confusing to viewers. It is especially important to edit the business name in Google if your company ever goes through a merger or rebrands and changes its name.

- Address & Phone Number

It is equally important to have the correct address and phone number on your listings. When Google is verifying your listing, oftentimes they will send a postcard to the address on the listing that has a verification code on it for you to submit back to Google. If your address isn’t listed correctly, you won’t receive the verification code, making it impossible to submit it back to Google. Occasionally instead of sending a postcard, Google will call you or send you a text with the verification code. Likewise, if the correct number isn’t on the listing, you won’t receive the code. Aside from needing the correct address and phone number for verification purposes, they are also critical pieces of information for viewers to have so they can visit your location and get in contact with you.

- Business Category

When you are setting up your Google Business Profile listing, selecting an accurate primary category is key. This category is considered one of the most important factors when it comes to getting your listing to show up for the right audience. The primary category you choose is the only one that is visible to viewers on your listing, but it is also important to choose secondary categories. The secondary categories also play a key role in getting your listing to show up for local searches. Relevancy and accuracy are key when selecting these. Choosing a lot of categories isn’t always better.

- Hours of Operation

Keeping your company’s hours of operation updated on your Google business listing lets interested searchers know when you’ll be open and available to serve them. Having inaccurate hours listed can confuse and frustrate viewers. It doesn’t benefit the viewer or the business if they try to contact or visit the company when it’s closed.

- Website Link

Having the company’s website linked in the listing is an easy way to drive traffic to your website for free. It also helps viewers and Google see that you are a reputable and established company. 


Taking Your Business Listings To The Next Level


- From The Business

One of the fields available for you to fill in is the “From The Business” section. This section is designed for you to tell searchers about your business and what sets you apart from other similar companies. This is a great place to give viewers a taste of your brand's personality. When you are writing this, think of what you would like to see if you were looking for a company that offered the same services your business does. Should your company ever change names, it can be good to mention that in this section so searchers don’t get confused by the listing having a different name.

- Upload Photos Weekly

Google loves pictures and videos. And so do searchers. Pictures give viewers a taste of what your business is like. While more is often better, it is also important to pay attention to the quality of photos you are uploading. It would be better to upload fewer good-quality pictures than a ton of blurry and pixelated photos. It is best to upload photos and videos on a weekly basis. When uploading, Google gives you the ability to categorize them as interior, exterior, or team photos. These pictures are the ones that show up on the top of the listings when shown to searchers.

- Reviews & Questions

One of the most viewed and most important pieces of information on Google My Business listings is the rating. When people are looking for a business, whether it’s a restaurant or a tractor dealership, they want the reassurance that it’s a good place and people are happy with their experiences. It’s easy to only want to respond to the good reviews and let the negative ones slip to the back, but it’s important to reach out and connect with all reviewers in a timely manner. Consumers view businesses that respond to reviews as more trustworthy than those who don’t. If the review is negative, offer them a way to contact you through email or call so you can work out what happened privately without everyone watching it unfold online. It’s good to be personable in your response and not respond to each review the exact same way.

- Make Posts Weekly

Google Business Profile posts are similar to social media posts in the sense that they are organic and a great way to connect with searchers. Posts are a great way to show your company’s personality, promote offers and events, and let viewers know what your company has going on. Currently Google has 4 post types: COVID-19 updates, What’s New, Offers, Events, Products. 

  • COVID-19 Update: These posts are intended to be used to showcase any COVID-19 guidelines or restrictions your company has in place. These posts will show up ahead of any other posts you make.

  • What’s New: These are designed for companies to share general information about their company such as news, blogs, or new services you’ll be offering.

  • Offers: These posts are for promoting any sales or special offers your company has going on. These posts have you set a starting and expiration date.

  • Events: These posts give you a way to share upcoming events your company will be hosting. These posts must have a title and event times.

  • Products: If your company sells products, these posts are a great way to promote them.

After reading through this guide you might feel a little overwhelmed and be wondering if managing your listings is really worth the effort. The answer is yes. There is a bit of leg work at the beginning (where your favorite ag marketing agency can assist) with getting it set up, but once the listing is set up, it’s relatively simple to keep it up to date. Customers are 70% more likely to visit your store and 50% more likely to make a purchase if your business has a Google My Business listing and it’s regularly updated.


Written by Shaelyn Goecke
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