While it’s important to have a Google Maps listing for your business, it’s just as important that your business ranks higher than your competitors. Just like Google ranks websites, blog posts, and all other content on the Internet, they also rank your Google Maps listing. This is because they want to return only the best results to searchers. So, the higher your business ranks in Google Maps, the more customers will see your business after performing a search. So, how can your business rank higher in Google Maps?
Of all the ranking factors Google considers when ranking businesses in Google Maps, the most important is your Google My Business (GMB) listing. Your profile should be complete, accurate, and optimized to get you a higher rank. Below are tips that will help you do this.
Go Local with Your Phone Number
Many businesses use a 1-800 or 1-877 toll-free number. This is convenient for your customers, but Google is all about local and so, doesn’t like it when these numbers appear in your listing. Use a local telephone number that has a local area code. This will not only help your business rank higher in Google Maps, it will also verify to your customers that your business has a brick and mortar location in the area.
Do Not Use a Tracking Number
Many business owners use a tracking number in Google Maps to determine how many customers are reaching them through their listing. However, like using a toll-free number, this can hurt your ranking. Use the same number all your other customers use. It will appear consistently online, and that’s really what Google’s looking for.
Update Your Hours
Including business hours in your listing doesn’t just help customers, it will also help your Google Maps ranking. Remember to not only include your regular hours, but also hours of operation on holidays, weekends, and any other time they change.
Optimize Your Business Description
Google Maps only gives you so many characters in your description, so use them wisely. Keep the description short and include your main keyword. Google loves keywords and will rank your Google Maps listing higher if it includes at least one keyword and your location.
Google knows that searchers today are looking for images and video over text. As such, you should include photos of your business in your Google Maps listing. Make sure they are pictures of the actual business, particularly the one you use as your profile picture. When Google sees you’re giving searchers the content they prefer, they’ll assign your listing a better rank.
Google loves reviews. Reviews, particularly positive ones, show Google that customers trust your business and that you’re a valuable business. Go into your Google Maps listing, click on “more information” and copy the direct link you find there. Then share it on social media and ask your customers to leave a review within your listing. The more reviews you have, the higher rank your listing will receive.
Consolidate Your Google Maps Listings
Sometimes businesses end up with duplicate listings. Maybe you created one and your marketing consultant created one. Or, maybe you created one when Google already had your business ready to claim. Whatever the reason, delete additional listings so you have only one. When you have more than one Google Maps listing, Google doesn’t know which one is correct, and which one to show customers. In the end, they’ll rank them both lower and your business won’t appear in the Maps search results.
With just these few steps, you can greatly increase your Google Maps ranking and become visible to even more customers!