Google Maps has been part of our lives since 2005, and we’ve relied on it ever since. Not only is it available on both Android and iOS, but Google is also almost every PC’s benchmark website. It’s little wonder why it’s a mainstay and go-to for every internet user.
Being first on Google’s pages almost always guarantees a business’s success. Occupying the top spots of Google Maps rankings is an immense advantage. This is especially true for small businesses.
Well-established businesses have the budget and the SEO know-how. This makes it easy for them to dominate the online market. Small businesses, on the other hand, may need to get more creative.
One simple way to compete is through Google Map Rankings. Have the same vantage as your bigger competitors online with high rankings.
Benefits of Ranking Higher on Google Maps
According to a study done by Microsoft, the average attention span has been declining. What used to be 12 seconds in the 2000s now has dropped to 8 seconds. Hence, being one of the first to appear on SERP means that more people will likely see and choose your brand.
Not only does it drive more traffic to your site, but it also gives users and visitors a sense of credibility. Back in the day, businesses had to rely on word of mouth. While that still holds, having it broadcasted online will further reinforce people’s notion.
Potential clients and customers also have an easier time seeing (and finding) your location. The same goes for a business’s contact information and reviews. This is why apart from employing SEO, it’s also important to improve your Google Maps rankings.
What’s even better is that ranking high on Google Maps is a simple can-do tactic. Both your business and customers will benefit from it too. Here are 5 ways to improve your small business’s Google Maps rankings:
1. Create, Claim, and Verify Your Business Listing
You can’t win the lottery without buying a ticket. It’s the same for your business. If you don’t have a Google Maps listing created yet, make sure you do.
Once you’ve created a listing, the next steps are to claim and verify it. You need to request and claim ownership of your business on Google Maps. It’ll help you manage the profile and have better interaction with your consumer base.
Being able to acknowledge, dispute a rating, or even answer questions online is a major advantage. It’ll make your business appear more dedicated and friendlier over other competitors. This is one of the simplest ways to gain loyal customers and establish your brand reputation.
Not to mention having a verified business in Google Maps improves your local ranking. When searching for something, Google gives results that are within a person’s vicinity. Being verified guarantees that you’ll be part of that recommendation.
2. Consistency is Key
A similar strategy used in SEO is keeping your information and content consistent. Google penalizes repetitive, incorrect, and inconsistent information. Secure a premiere spot in Google Maps Rankings through a streamlined business listing.
Fill out your business’s basic information completely. Ensure that your contact information, addresses, locations, and store hours don’t stray from your website info. Inconsistencies in the information put listings in lower ranks by default.
There is also more minor but necessary information that often gets overlooked. These are good business descriptions and a business category. Being mindful of these details pays off, not only for your SEO rankings but also for your customers.
3. Make Use of Embeds and Backlinks
Apart from adding photo embeds to your website or listing, have strong backlinks too. Backlinks are an SEO company’s secret to success. They redirect users and traffic back to your website or page.
Without backlinks, webpages rarely find themselves on a good spot on Google. Make use of them in conjunction with high-quality photos. It’ll help you get high Google Maps rankings and make your listing look more professional.
Additionally, having good quality photos, especially of food, or your products, entices users. It also gives them confirmation that you have what they’re looking for. Apart from photos, you can also try embedding a Google Map of your business.
This offers a faster and more convenient way to navigate your shop. It also increases the possibility for them to zero in on your business.
4. Have an Optimized and Responsive Website
It’s no doubt that our phones are an extension of ourselves. Studies show that over 72% of mobile users use their smartphones to purchase from online stores. If you have a website, ensure that it’s responsive and optimized for mobile use.
Easy user navigation helps elderly and disabled customers. This also gives regular customers easy access to your products and services. It’s also crucial to update your information to keep it consistent with your Google Map SEO.
It’s not only inconsistencies that get penalized by Google Maps. Broken or unresponsive links and slow-loading pages will hurt your Google Maps ranking. In turn, your business traffic and potential will also suffer.
5. Take Advantage of Subcategories
For franchises or businesses within a bigger establishment, having a subcategory helps. This helps direct Google Maps searches to a more specific operation within the area. Adding a subcategory to your small business increases your opportunity for representation.
If you offer various goods and services, it is in your best interest to categorize and list them. This will help you compete better when people search for those categories. Don’t generalize your listing too much.
Try to incorporate subcategories that are all relevant to your business. Some examples are fresh produce, bakery, garments, and accessories. Big-box stores like Walmart do this to make browsing easier for their customers.
Take the Lead in Google Maps Rankings
Grow your business and take big-name establishments head-on. You don’t have to be high-end or well-known to benefit from ranking high on Google Maps. All you need is knowing the tricks of the trade and some attention to detail.
SEO strategies are a great way to one-up the competition. Google Maps rankings are only the beginning of your online success. Contact us today at Bipper Media and take your business to the next level.