If you are a local business who serves clients in your area, you need a Google Business Profile. Many times, it is the first thing people find about your business, so it has great potential to bring in more business. The more GBP views you get, the more likely potential clients will click through to your website. This is good for website SEO, good for business, and a good way to find the clients you are meant to support.
People need proof that you're legit.
In order for clients to decide they want to work with you, they need to be shown evidence that:
You are a legitimate business.
You are trustworthy,
You have a good track record with past clients - aka, you helped them in some way and/or they like you!
Luckily for local businesses, all of these things can be found in the reviews on your Google Business Profile. The more reviews the better. The more positive reviews, even better!
In my personal experience, whenever I'm looking for a therapist, a coach, a healer of some kind in my area, the very first thing I look at is their Google Business profile and reviews, because that's what shows up first in my search results. I look at the reviews, how they responded to reviewers, and if their profile is up to date. Once I've searched through a good amount of profiles, I then choose which website to click through to.
So really, for local businesses the Google Business Profile acts as a strong filter to funnel the right people to your website.
Your Google Business Profile is amazing for your website SEO!
If you have a healthy Google Business Profile, with a growing amount of positive reviews, you will absolutely get more traffic to your website - which will increase your search rankings. This is, in my opinion, one of the easiest ways to boost your website's SEO if you are a local business.
How to set up and access your Google Business Profile:
To create a glowing Google Business Profile, you need to get an account and start collecting reviews. Follow these steps to get started:
Sign in to Google My Business: Visit the Google My Business website at https://www.google.com/business/ and click Manage Now. If you don't have an account yet, click "Create account" and follow the instructions to set up a new Google account.
Enter Your Business Name: After signing in, enter the name of your business. Make sure to use your official business name to avoid any issues with verification.
Select Your Business Category: Choose the category that best represents your business. This will help Google understand what your business is about and display your profile to relevant users.
Add Your Business Location: If you have a physical location where customers visit, enter your business address. If your business is online-only or you provide services at your customers' locations, select "Yes" when asked if you deliver goods and services to customers at their location. You'll then have the option to set a service area or hide your address.
Provide Contact Information: Enter your business phone number and website URL, if applicable. This information will be displayed on your profile and allow customers to contact you easily.
Choose Verification Method: Google will need to verify your business to ensure its legitimacy. Select the verification method that suits you best. Common verification methods include receiving a postcard at your business address, phone verification, or email verification.
Verify Your Business: Complete the verification process according to the method you selected. Note that some verification methods may take a few days to complete.
Optimize Your Profile: Once your business is verified, log back into your Google My Business account and optimize your profile. Add relevant photos, update business hours, and provide additional information about your business to make your profile more appealing to potential customers.
Start Engaging with Clients: Your Google Business Profile is now live! Start engaging with customers by responding to reviews, posting updates, and sharing valuable content. Regularly update your profile to keep it fresh and relevant.
Get reviews from past clients by sending them a direct review link.
A direct link to your Google My Business page makes it much more convenient for clients to write you a review. It saves them time and effort, as they won't need to search for your business on Google manually. With a simple click, they can leave their feedback, making it more likely for them to share their experiences.
How to Find Your Google Business Profile Direct Review Link
Sign in to your Google Business Profile: If you don't have an account, create one by visiting https://www.google.com/business and clicking on "Manage Now."
Once you're logged in, you'll be directed to your GBP dashboard.
On the left-hand side, click on "Home" to view your business listing.
Scroll down until you find the "Get more reviews" section. Here, you'll see a "Share review form" button.
Click on the button, and a unique link will be generated.
Copy the link and share it with your clients through emails, social media, or your website. Make it easily accessible to encourage more reviews.
Tips for Encouraging Reviews
Timing is Crucial:
Ask for reviews when your clients are likely to be most satisfied, such as after a positive experience with your services. The longer you wait, the less likely people will be willing to take the time out of their day to leave a review.
Personalize the Request & Speak from the Heart:
Craft personalized messages when sharing the review link. Express gratitude for their support and let them know how much their feedback means to your business.
Respond to Your Reviews!:
Let your clients know how much you appreciate their reviews, how much you love working with them, and really anything else that comes from the heart! Potential clients love seeing how a business responds to reviews, as you can really tell a lot about a business based on these seemingly small interactions.
If you offer local services in some way, you need a Google Business Profile. It is just as important as your website in attracting clients. Your profile needs to have reviews from former clients in order to show that your business is trustworthy and capable of supporting new potential clients. If you're really wanting to bring in more business, you should plan on continually checking in on your GBP, keeping it updated, sending out review links to past clients, and responding to reviews.