Photo by henry perks
Your Google Maps listing is a valuable marketing tool for your company. It can help direct you to new customers, stand out from competitors, and drive more revenue. Even better, your listing is completely free.
But – these advantages are only valid if your Google Maps listing provides strong visibility. Just because your company is listed in a region, it doesn’t mean Google will prioritize it for browsers in that area.
Many people make local SEO mistakes when it comes to their Google Maps listing, and they miss out on big business. To help you avoid these, here are our top six local SEO mistakes to be aware of.
1. Not Claiming Your Google Maps Listing
Of course, you can’t conduct effective local SEO Google Maps marketing if you don’t have a listing. Be sure to add your company to Google maps and claim your listing.
When you claim your business on Google maps, you can provide plenty of details about your company. The more useful information a company listing contains, the higher it will rate on Google Maps. If you don’t claim your listing, your marketing options are a lot more limited.
If you already have a Google My Business account, open your Google Maps listing and click on the ‘Claim this business’ or ‘Own this business?’ button. Then, follow the instructions as directed.
If you don’t have a Google My Business account yet, open one to get started.
2. Leaving Your Google Maps Listing Blank
One of the most common local SEO mistakes is leaving a Google Maps listing blank or partially filled in. Once you have a Google Maps listing and a Google My Business account linked to it, you’re ready to optimize the entry to rank higher in search results.
The more information included, the higher it will rise in the ranking. To add more data to your listing, log into your Google My Business Account. You’ll then come across a dashboard with some tabs down the side.
Navigate to the ‘info tab.’ You can add your business’s name, category, area, hours, special hours, contact details, website, products, services, description, and more.
3. Avoiding Image Use
To improve your local SEO strategy, be sure to include photos of your Google Maps listing. The use of imagery signals to Google that your listing is active and worthy of rising higher in the search results. Secondly, Google’s photo-recognition technology is improving, and the company is beginning to show photos in local search results.
Finally, clients and customers love imagery, and the SEO rule of thumb is that Google tends to love what customers and consumers love. If you don’t add images to your Google Maps listing, a dull and generic map image will be displayed instead, which could look pretty plain compared to your competitor’s listings.
Boost your Google Maps ranking by uploading interesting and high-quality imagery to capture the essence of your brand.
4. Having No Google Reviews
As Google loves what consumers love, it gives favor to listings with plenty of positive reviews.
When you create a listing on Google local maps, your brand is automatically opened to reviews. However, this doesn’t necessarily mean the appraisals will come flooding through.
To gain a substantial selection of reviews on your Google Maps listing, you must be proactive in requesting reviews and responding to them.
When you respond to reviews, you encourage more people to leave their feedback. If you receive a negative review, a friendly and understanding response can help mitigate the adverse effects. Likewise, your feedback shows potential customers how attentive you are.
Sure, reviews can be nerve-wracking. But unless your service or products are downright terrible (which is your main concern), bad reviews don’t crop up often.
5. Not Optimizing the Content on Your Website
Many brands make the mistake of focusing directly on Google Maps optimization and then linking to a website that hasn’t been updated in years.
Your website plays a crucial part in welcoming a higher Google Maps ranking, so it’s essential to keep it updated.
Check your NAP information and stay consistent with it across your website. If you have a contact page, you can also embed Google Map of your business’s location.
The content across your website should also be optimized for location-based searched. Make sure your photos are all geotagged, and you’ve used your local keywords in headers, subheaders, body, and image alts of your content.
6. Neglecting Guest Posting
If you’re knowledgeable in your field, show it by guest posting. Writing quality content for popular local or niche industry websites is a great way to boost your local SEO and get your brand out there.
When guest posting, you can often link back to your website and Google Maps listing. Not only does this provide backlinks, but guest posting allows you to build brand credibility and trust in your sector and with potential customers.
Avoid These Local SEO Mistakes
Ranking in the Google Map pack won’t happen overnight, especially if you’re a new company or have many competitors. Plus, attempting to boost your ranking quickly will raise a ton of red flags to Google.
Take your time and consider the local SEO mistakes we’ve listed. Before you know it, your brand will be sitting in a high-ranking spot at the top of the pack.
If this all sounds too overwhelming for you, it may be time to call in the experts – us! Learn all about our managed local SEO solutions here.