There are a number of variables to consider when doing Google Maps SEO. Backlink profile (domain authority), website, and other off-site signals all impact local SEO rankings. However, when it comes to ranking in Google Maps and the local 3-pack, your Google My Business (GMB) listing is a key player.
There’s a lot of information being tossed around regarding the best approach to Google My Business SEO and properly setting up your GMB page. To clear the smoke, below I’ve put together a short punch-list on how to optimize your Google My Business listing for Google Maps SEO. For more information on this topic, visit Captivate Local, the local SEO branch of Captivate Search Marketing.
Optimizing Your Google My Business Listing
Optimizing your GMB page is vital to actualizing sustainable rankings in Google Maps and the local 3 pack The first step is to make sure that you have claimed a Google My Business page. The follow tips are ways in which you can ensure your GMB page is SEO-friendly.
- Be sure to fully-populate your listing to 100% completion and be detail-oriented in regards to hours of operation, location, contact information, etc.
- Take the time to write a compelling introduction, description and tagline (or use your company slogan.)
- Uploaded high-quality, optimized images (ideally at least one logo image, specific images for each section for storefront, in-office images, etc. if applicable.)
- Choose the single most relevant option as your “primary” business category. Contrary to popular belief, having less subcategories can actually be better for SEO, as mentioned in this webinar with Andrew Shotland. Perhaps more subcategories dilutes your authority or relevance to your primary category.
- Define the areas in which your business services (names of nearby cities or towns that you serve, or a defined radius from your business’s location.)
- Link to your business’s website, as well as other social media profiles and notable content you’ve produced. Parallel, link from your business’ website to your GMB page (you’ll see instructions for this on the page with specific code to drop on your site.)
- Verify your GMB listing via phone verification or postcard submission. The latter takes more time, as Google will send a postcard to your business’s location with a 4 digit verification PIN.
- Generate reviews. Be creative and figure out a way to generate (positive) reviews on your GMB page. A high volume of positive reviews can help with SEO and CRO (conversion rate optimization,) providing greater trust in your business.
Applying these GMB optimization techniques can dramatically help boost your business’s potential to rank in Google Maps and the local 3 pack. For more information regarding Google Maps marketing and local SEO, visit CaptivateLocal.com.