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How Important is Google My Business for SEO?

With many local businesses competing for the opportunity to showcase their products and services to people in their community, competition has become fierce. In the wake of the pandemic, becoming smarter about the way you promote your business has become a necessity in the quest for online visibility.

Gone are the days of customers turning to the Yellow Pages for information about opening times, store info etc. If customers want to know anything about your business, their first point of action will be heading to search results; and if they head there and can’t find your business, their next move will be to seek refuge in the arms of your competitors.

However, there is light at the end of the tunnel, and it comes in form of something known as Google My Business.

What is Google My Business?

Formerly known as Google Places for Business, Google My Business is a tool provided by Google to help businesses manage their online presence.

The tool grants you the ability to list your business location and information on Google Maps and local search results in the form of a neat panel on Google’s Search Engine Results Pages.  

Businesses can display important information, such as:

  • Opening/closing times
  • Products/services
  • Contact details
  • Link to website
  • Reviews
  • Photos
  • Posts

In a post-pandemic world where businesses are reopening at a rapid rate, utilizing every opportunity possible is crucial. By simply responding to reviews, keeping your business information up-to-date and remaining active on Google My Business, you can reap the rewards it has to offer.

What are the Benefits of Google My Business?

Creating, verifying, and utilizing your Google My Business listing is an invaluable opportunity that provides businesses with a host of benefits:

  • Appear in Maps and Local Pack Listings
  • Provide a great first impression
  • Unlock key customer insights
  • Ensure online consistency
  • Increase Search Visibility

Google is a primary source of information that people trust to provide accurate and up-to-date data. As such – the information provided on Google My Business adds a sense of credibility in the eyes of your consumers.

Did someone say Local SEO?

With local SEO being a type of Search Engine Optimisation that helps businesses get found in local search results, Google My Business is a critical aspect in your local SEO efforts.

Google uses several factors to determine where a business should show up in local search results. Although many of these factors are not made public knowledge by Google, there are 3 important known factors that impact local rankings:

  1. Distance
  2. Relevance
  3. Prominence

The good news is that businesses can optimise their Google My Business listings in line with the above factors. This will help them to become more well-known with quality services that are relevant to search intent.

Having an accurate, well optimised Google My Business listing can go a long way in supporting your local search rankings. Your GMB panel is generally one of the first points of contact between you and your customer, and as we all know – first impressions count.