Why You Should be Posting on Google My Business

August 21st, 2018 by Jenna Mire

“Just Yahoo it,” said no one ever. It just doesn’t have the same ring as “Google it,” which was officially added to the Oxford English Dictionary and the Merriam-Webster Collegiate Dictionary in 2006. That’s because Google has practically monopolized internet searching. According to NetMarketShare, Google accounted for over 79 percent of all global desktop search traffic in 2017, followed by Bing at 7.27 percent, Baidu at 6.55 percent, and Yahoo at 5.06 percent. In addition, Google receives over 63,000 searches per second on any given day. In the U.S., more Google searches take place on mobile devices than on computers, and 30 percent of mobile searches are related to a location. It’s obvious that to succeed in the SEO world, you have to play by Google’s rules.

So, Just How Do You Play By Google’s Rules?

One way to do this is by creating a Google My Business (GMB) page for your company. This page allows your businesses to manage their online presence across Google, through a physical location. Within this company page, Google has a social posting platform that allows business to provide “up-to-date posts from verified people, places or things, directly in search results.” These public posts allow businesses to share company updates to feature what’s new, respond to customer reviews, and add photos to highlight what makes your business special, and build brand awareness.

Screenshot of a Google My Business post from Exterior Crew, LLC

These posts are particularly captivating because, rather than appearing in the search results, they are displayed in the knowledge panel, which presents a more engaging visual aid. This is NOT to be confused with Google +, which was Google’s attempt to compete with Facebook as a social platform. And let’s be real; it was a major fail. Realizing this, Google reconstructed their platform and created GMB. Google + profiles and pages still exist, but they are now subpages of a GMB page.

The Start of Google Posts With Candidate Cards

Before July 2017, Google’s now-called “Google Posts” were only accessible to few. It all started with “Candidate Cards.” You may remember seeing these around the 2016 presidential election. Google described these as non-ad privileges, giving 2016 Republican and Democratic candidates a place in Google search.

Image of Google's candidate cards - Search Influence

Proving to be both appealing and informative by viewers, Google allowed the expansion of these cards for celebrities and sports teams. As of June 2017, GMB brought these now-called “Google Posts” to local businesses as an easy way to help attract new customers and build relationships with the customers you already have. These posts have proven particularly effective in promoting flash sales or promotions, emergency updates, such as school closings, and sharing job openings. In addition, these posts contain a call to action (CTA) feature, which provides an easy and direct way for customers to book appointments or reservations.

Benefits of Google Posts Over Traditional Social Media Posts

You may be thinking, why would I need to use Google as a social platform when I already use Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.? And you have a point. These social platforms are still great ways to post updates about your business. Although similar, Google Posts offer a few advantages that the typical social media platforms do not, including the following:

They’re more searchable

You can literally “Google it.” When searching for a business, these posts will appear directly on Google Search and Google Maps pages. When someone searches for your business, your location address and phone number will appear in the knowledge panel on the right-hand side of your search results. Your company’s address/location is the primary piece of information searched for by local customers. In regard to mobile, local searches lead 50 percent of viewers to visit stores within one day.

Screenshot of a GMB post by Echo Limousine - Search Influence

You will expand your reach

Not only does Google lead the way in search engine results, but it also surpasses Facebook search queries. According to Adweek, Google averages 3.5 billion searches per day, compared to Facebook’s 2 billion per day. In addition, 82 percent of people turn to search engines to find local information.

Keyword Searches

On Google, you can use keywords to target certain audiences—specifically, people that are already looking for your services. Since these people already have an idea of what they are looking for, they are likely to be further along in the decision stage, meaning they are more likely to convert into a client or customer. By contrast, Facebook is geared more toward targeting specific interests and in-depth personal information to lure in a potential customer.

Impact on your ranking

Google’s goal is to provide you with the most relevant information based on a search query. When you post new content directly through your GMB listing, you are sharing relevant content and information about your local business, which contributes to building your location authority. This tells Google that your business is legit. The more you legitimize your business to Google, the higher ranking you will get. The higher ranking you have, the higher you will appear on Google search and gain more traffic to your site.

Screenshot showing how to create a Google My Business post - Search Influence

Connect with your customers directly

You can include CTA buttons on all of your GMB posts. Call to action buttons have been proven priceless for converting customers. According to Everything You Need to Know About the Psychology of the Call to Action by Neil Patel, the human mind expects a call to action button. “Our minds are prepared for and are expecting an experience of being called to act and have already decided that there will be a CTA. We know that expectation affects behavior. That’s why people know to act on the CTA. They aren’t staring at the CTA button wondering what it is. They know its a button they are being asked to click.”

Some examples of how a business can utilize these buttons include the following:

    1. Make a reservation
    2. Sign up for a newsletter
    3. Learn more about the latest offers
    4. Buy a specific product from your website
    5. Call now

Get backlinks

Everyone knows that backlinks have a huge effect on organic search results. By posting compelling content on your GMB posts, people are more likely to engage and reference information from your site. You can also link your site pages in a post, making it easier for researchers to find your pages.

Start Posting!

Although still green, GMB posting is projected to be incredibly valuable to local businesses. Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are saturated with businesses looking to promote brand awareness. But since GMB posts are still in the early phases, it hasn’t been flooded by the masses just yet—which is why you should get in now! GMB is an excellent platform that allows your customers to stay in the know of what is going on with your businesses. Not to mention, it’s free! What do you have to lose?

Here at Search Influence, we’re constantly staying on top of new ways in which we can help our clients be found online and thrive in their industry. If you’re interested in honing your local SEO strategy with rich, relevant Google My Business posts, then request your marketing analysis today to get started.

Images:

Candidate Cards