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Googling for Dollars

Here are five essential Google My Business tips to generate more leads.

Google My Business (or GMB) is a free, simple way for you to help your company stand out online and improve your local search engine rankings. Your GMB listing displays on the right-hand side of search results anytime someone searches your company name through Google.

A GMB listing has become a must-have for local businesses like custom integrators. I think you should view your GMB listing as a second website homepage for your company; it’s that important!

If you have no idea what I’m talking about, check out this Google My Business Guide to set up your GMB listing today. Once you have a listing, the tips below will help you optimize and make the most of it.

Also by Tim Fitzpatrick: Avoid These Marketing Mistakes at All Costs

1. Maximize the Info Section
Once you’ve logged in to your Google My Business account, one of the first sections you should complete for your GMB listing is the info section. Basic company details such as name, address, and phone can be updated here. Fill out as much of the information in this section as you possibly can. The more in-depth you are, the better.

In particular, make sure you select the correct option for the category section. You can choose one primary category and multiple additional categories. Some of the most appropriate categories for custom installation companies are home automation company, security system installer, home audio store, home theater store, and audiovisual consultant.

The other often-overlooked element in the info section is the profile short name feature. The profile short name allows you to create a custom URL for your Google My Business page that is easy to share.

2. Reviews Are a Must
Online reviews are super important for building credibility and trust with potential clients. Your Google reviews are the most critical place to start building reviews for your company. Within the settings of GMB, you can select to receive notifications when reviews come in, making it incredibly easy for you to read and respond to reviews.

By setting up a profile short name (from #1 above), you can share the URL to your GMB listing so clients can quickly and easily write a review for your business. By consistently asking for reviews and making it as easy as possible for clients to leave one, you’ll be much more successful in your review gathering efforts.

Also by Tim Fitzpatrick: 5 Reasons You Need to Get More Online Reviews

3. Take Advantage of Google Posts
In the post section, you can promote news announcements, events, offers, and products/services. They are like mini ads in your Google My Business listing. Posts expire every seven days (unless it’s an event with a start and end date). Because posts expire so quickly, you should create posts on a somewhat frequent basis to fully take advantage of them.

4. Photos Make a Huge Difference
Custom installation companies have no shortage of cool, amazing project photos. The photos section enables you to load pictures or videos to help potential clients get a better understanding of what you do and help you stand out from the competition.

People love pictures and videos, and this section of your GMB listing can go a long way in making people feel comfortable with what your company is all about.

Also by Tim Fitzpatrick: Commonly Overlooked Ways to Generate Leads

5. Prepopulate the Questions and Answers Section
Tips 1-4 are all updated by logging in to your Google My Business listing. However, you can only complete tip five from your active Google My Business listing in the search results.

About halfway down your listing, you will see a section titled “Questions & Answers.” Anyone can ask and answer questions on your listing, but you can prepopulate this section with common questions you get about your business.

All you need to do is create commonly asked questions in this section and then answer them yourself. It’s a great way to provide potential customers with additional information and make your company stand out from the competition.

A fully optimized Google My Business listing has a plethora of information. A GMB listing can meet the needs of a client, so they don’t even have to leave the search results to find what they need.

Setting up and optimizing your Google My Business listing is one of the easiest things you can do to build your online presence. If you take the time to complete these five tips, I guarantee you will be head and shoulders above your competition.