Have you ever wondered why some local businesses do better than others? That’s because they’re on Google Business Profile (GBP).
Google Business Profile (formerly called Google My Business) allows business owners to connect with customers locally. With GBP, businesses such as yours can enhance the likelihood of ranking higher on the search engine results page (SERP). Not only that, but through Google Business Profile posts, you can offer more information so customers know who you are, what you do and what’s new with you.
Google Business Profile Posts (shortened to Google Posts) are like Facebook posts. Introduced in 2016, it’s how businesses share posts with their target audience. When a user searches for your business on Google, they’ll see your Google Posts in the sidebar or under your business’s results. Businesses use these posts to promote products, advertise services and so on.
Compared to GBP in general, which contains the “what, where and when” of the business, Google Posts are similar to social media updates. They enable businesses to connect with customers and share additional information that isn’t found in their
Swet Studio’s Google My Business “Knowledge Panel” offers basic information about the business.
See how Swet Studio used Google My Business Posts to update customers on its COVID-19 protocols.
Through the Google Business Profile platform, you can create four types of posts:
What’s New: GBPs “What’s New” feature allows businesses to update their customers on new product promotions and share other sorts of information.
Events: You can share upcoming events you’re involved in, as long as you provide the title, date and time of the event. You can also include a call to action such as RSVP.
Offers: This feature is for promotional types of posts where you can share your new deals for free. You also have the option to provide coupon codes and lead customers to your website for more information.
Products: Highlight your products in a carousel catalog, adding images, price tags and more. Note: Carousel posts get 5.13 percent more engagement than one-image posts.
Do you even have a Google Business Profile? If not, don’t worry: Setting it up is straightforward. Follow these steps to create a profile on Google My Business:
Once you’ve been verified, you’re free to start posting! On the dashboard, select “Posts” on the sidebar. You’ll be prompted to select the type of post (e.g., What’s New), so choose the appropriate one since certain features aren’t found in certain types of posts.
Google My Business used to archive seven-day-old posts, but now, posts you wrote years ago will appear on your panel. To deal with this, you’ll have to delete the posts to stop them from resurfacing or post regularly to “cover” the posts that are no longer relevant.
If the first thing a customer finds is information that you posted a year ago, it can be disappointing to find out that it’s outdated. For example, it can be a frustrating experience to find out that a link no longer works. Besides, posting regularly is a great way to show your customers that you’re still in business.
You’ll see greater engagement in posts that contain images. Whatever type of post you select, you should always leverage images. Your customers will likely click posts with visuals than posts without visuals. Take these posts from Kama Bistro, for instance. If you had to click on one post, you’d likely click on the one that has a picture of a cocktail.
If possible, feature professional-grade images in your posts. Keep in mind that how your product looks can make or break your customer’s choice, so it’s worth hiring a photographer who can showcase your products in the best light.
Pro Tip: Don’t have a graphic designer? You can use Canva to curate a set of templates for your Google posts. These templates should be on-brand, so be sure to identify what colors, fonts, etc., best reflect your business.
For videos, remember they can’t exceed 30 seconds. Aside from it being the GBP limit, your customers will quickly lose interest if your video is longer than it should.
Although GBP allows you to write posts as long as 1,500 characters, you shouldn’t. It’s generous, but it won’t get your customers to engage with your posts. The fact is that a 1,500-character post is too long and can get too tiresome to read. As a rule of thumb, your post should only be 150 to 300 characters long.
And don’t bother with hashtags; they do nothing. It won’t harm your post, but it won’t help it, either. Just stick to emojis.
You’ll find a variety of call-to-action (CTA) buttons on GBP, such as “Learn More,” “Buy Now” and “Sign Up.” Adding a CTA button can help you reach your goal, whether it’s to get people to sign up, purchase your product or view your website.
Not sure which CTA button to use? The best thing about GBP is that it’s absolutely free, so you can try out various options to see what your customers respond to.
There’s no “one true way” to write your posts. After all, your tone should be based on your brand. However, remember that your tone demonstrates the type of business you’re in. Plus, customers can base their first impression on your posts, so be careful. Avoid posts that are too personal (in other words, don’t use Google Business Profile to call out “bad” customers) and try to maintain a conversational tone.
GBP allows you to add a link to your posts, whether to your website, Facebook, Twitter, etc. Make sure that your links actually match the content of the posts to avoid disappointing your customers with clickbait-like tactics.
Let’s say you’ve posted an Event Post. When customers click the link, they should be redirected to that event’s landing page. If you’re posting about an offer, customers should be redirected to more information on that offer.
There’s a good chance that your post’s content is not enough. When your customers see a post they’re interested in, they will want more information. If your post is well-written and contains a link, they’ll likely click on that link, and in turn, this brings greater traffic to your website. It’s a win-win.
Is there a way to tell how well (or poorly) your posts are performing? Your work isn’t done when you click ‘Post Now’ on Google Business Profile – keep in mind that you also need to track your posts. It’s the only way to tell whether or not people are interacting with your posts. If they are, that’s great news. However, you shouldn’t stop there.
These insights will give you an idea of what you can do better on GBP. As a general rule, if a particular post has great engagement, there’s a good chance that it’s what your customers want.
All of these insights can be accessed on the GBP dashboard. After logging in, go to the “Insights” tab on the left for an overview of the number of times customers have discovered your company, the number of times your website has been viewed, etc.
Google Posts is a useful feature that’s fuss-free and, most importantly, free. By using Google Business Profile, you can rank higher in the local search results and connect with customers who are specifically seeking home-grown brands.
Since it’s no secret that people search for businesses on Google, it’s about time that you start making the most of GBP. Keep these tips in mind and try Google Posts to see what works best for your business.