For my very first marketing column, I wrote about how to get listed in the Google “yellow pages,” or rather, have a professional-looking listing on its search pages. While that recommendation still holds true, the process has been expanded upon recently, to hopefully ease the burden that businesses might feel after Google+ meets its demise.
If you took my recommendation and got listed on Google, you probably know about Google’s My Business website and app. This is a dashboard that shows your website traffic performance, searches, reviews, advertisements and more. It’s a great asset to managing your business on the world’s largest search engine.
Posts allow you to keep your customers and anyone who searches for you on Google up-to-date. You can announce specials you have going on, showcase your latest work and talk about a specific service you offer. It shows right under your reviews and biography on Google. The best thing? There’s a simple call to action. You can give people an easy link to call you, link them to your booking or contact page and more. If you’re working on getting some last-minute holiday mini sessions…this is a great way to get the word out.
Think of it like posting to Facebook, only that you’re posting to Google’s search engine, as well as Google Maps. Anyone who searches for your business will see these posts in the right sidebar (known as the local panel) of the Google search results.
Google Posts are removed after seven days of the initial publish date. As a post is about to expire, you’ll get an e-mail from Google asking you to make another post.
Insights are another tool that will help you in a number of ways. It shows how you’ve been found on Google, showing you the keywords and the number of users who have searched for those keywords. This is great because it can help you determine what SEO tags you want to use, in addition to what blog post topics may be of interest to your readers.
And no, I have no idea what a donut 5k is. But that sounds like a ton of fun!
Insights will also show you what platform customers use to find you — either through Google Search or Google Maps. It’ll also show what actions customers took — visiting your website, requesting directions, calling you or messaging you. Finally, it’ll let you see how the photos you’ve uploaded have been doing in terms of views, and lets you compare those to other “businesses like you.”
How can I make this work for me?
Submitting a post every week is a no-brainer. It shows that you’re an active business, which is important in today’s marketplace. And submitting a photo with a post will help you stand out and showcase your work at the same time.
In terms of Insights, think of this as a great content workflow tool. It tells you what people are searching for that includes your business, meaning you have an inside knowledge of what your audience wants.
For more on Photography Marketing, see my weekly column.