Let’s Talk Marketing!

Submitted by Ken Ivey, Living Water Digital, and member of The Chamber’s Marketing Advisory Committee

Five Easy Steps to Keep Your “Google My Business” Listing SEO Optimized

(This is the third installment of a three-part article series on marketing your business online with Google My Business.)

Your Google My Business listing can be one of the most powerful web marketing tools available – second only to your website.  However, it is not enough just to have a listing.  You also want your listing page to appear as high on search engine results lists as possible.  Fortunately, you don’t have to be an Internet marketing genius to optimize your listing.  Here are five easy steps to keep your Google My Business listing SEO optimized:

Follow the rules.  As you probably know by now, Google is well known for taking serious measures to weed out things like spam, irrelevant content, and erroneous websites when determining its rankings.  Google My Business is no exception.  When you create your Google My Business listing, make sure you read up on Google’s content guidelines before you publish anything.  Breaking these rules means Google won’t take your page seriously when ranking it . . . and might not even let you play at all.

Third-party business directories.  Make sure you also list your business in other free online business directories, including Bing, Yelp, and Yahoo.  You can link your business directory listings to your Google My Business listing to improve your listing’s SEO.

Eliminate Duplicate Listings.  Do a Google search for your main business phone number.  If you see more than one Google My Business listing for your business, you’re in trouble.  Google likely “skimmed” your duplicate listing information from other directories and initially thought they were separate entities; however they’ve been known to penalize your listing for having more than one.  This is especially common for physicians and dentists due to their affiliations with more than one hospital or practice. To fix this, claim all of the listings, then delete the superfluous entries.

Categories.  Google My Business allows you to choose multiple categories for your listing.  Check your keyword research for the most popular term you’ll be found for and there’s likely already a category for it.  For the rest of the categories, consider typing in other keywords a letter at a time to see what Google Suggest recommends.

Keywords.  We talked about this last week, so the best thing you can do to improve your ranking now is to make sure your website can ALSO rank well for the keywords you’ve chosen.  This will help considerably in Google My Business.

Your images and videos.  We also discussed this last week. Remember that search engine spiders cannot read images; therefore, you must tag your images with appropriate keyword phrases if you want them to count toward your search engine ranking.  If possible, insert keywords into the meta-data of the image/video file.  To see if this is possible, right-click your image file and look for properties.  If you can edit them, add keywords as appropriate and save your image as keyword.jpg and then upload them to your listing.

Part 1:  “Google My Business” – Why It’s So Important to Your Business
Part 2:  The Five Most Important Components of Your “Google My Business” Listing

About the Author:
Ken Ivey, affectionately dubbed ‘the Web Czar’ by peers, has been helping businesses embrace technology for 30 years. Contact him at  ken@livingwaterdigital.com or call (920) 645-2700.