On June 17, 2020
With the economic reopening underway and new restrictions on businesses, it’s more important than ever to communicate with your customers. Google My Business is your new best friend in SEO that lets you manage how your business appears on Google Search and Maps so that your customers and followers can find you and make contact so you can continue to foster the relationships that will grow your business. Just one failed trip caused by inaccurate store hours could cause irreparable damage. More than communication after reopenings, Google My Business can be an excellent way to inexpensively improve your website’s SEO and drive traffic to your website.
Google My Business and Your Distillery
Google My Business keeps the conduit of online searches to foot traffic, website visits, and phone calls flowing freely and happily. Regardless of global pandemics, it is imperative to keep the online information on your distillery up-to-date and accurate, as well as to take advantage of free features like “posts” to let folks know what you are up to. Google users rely heavily on this information to pinpoint and traverse to your establishment.
With the changes stemming from COVID-19, including temporary closures and pick-up-only hours, people are using Google and Google Map searches more than ever to check, double-check, and triple-check business hours and availability. On the off chance you haven’t set up your Google business listing, this would be the first place to start.
Reach More People With Posts, Including COVID-19 Updates
Google My Business posts are often underutilized by small businesses, and they are an easy way to increase your visibility in searches. Google explains about posting, “You can create and share announcements, offers, new or popular items in stock, or event details directly with your customers.”
You’ll want to make sure you utilize and create a “COVID-19 update” by selecting this tab in the post section. “COVID-19 update” posts appear prominently on your profile and are more noticeable to your customers. Here at High Proof Creative, we used this “COVID Update” to alert the public that we switched offices to prevent confusion and misdelivered mail.
Update a new photo post every 7 days to keep your content fresh and relevant. Many distilleries remember to keep their social media platforms pumped full of fun images, but don’t forget to save a nice one for their Google page. Keep it simple and use as high quality of shots as possible.
Add Your Products (and Services)
Not everyone knows that “Products” on Google My Business don’t only have to be physical bottles filled to the brim with delightful spirits, but they also could be tours, classes, consulting, or other services you provide. Adding your “Products” is a helpful way for Googlers to find out what they can get from you. Pro tip: You can add a “Product” through multiple sections of your dashboard; these all do the same thing. Most types of Google posts expire after 7 days. A product is “forever.”
Receive Helpful Data on Your Business
Your Google My Business dashboard makes it easy to see a variety of metrics on how your business is being searched for, viewed, and utilized.
The “Direct,” “Discovery,” and “Branded” pie chart shows what kind of searches people are using to find you. Being “discovered” more than found with a “direct” search? It might pay off to look into paid promotion services.
Make a COVID update on Google Business
These updates get permanently seen when your business is searched and lets users know “you’re on it” and your hours and updates will be more reliable.
Check your Insights tab to see how you’re being searched, your photo views, and phone calls to look for any changes you might need to make. For example: Have you been receiving those calls?
Make sure to keep updating your hours and verify your addresses. Add multiple addresses if you have more than one location, even if one location is more prominent than another to your business.
Add your products and services to the products section. Most posts only last for 7 days, but your products will never expire so they can continue to attract attention and add value to your listing.
If your business was closed or will be open with restrictions, and you are returning to more availability, consider making an “Event” post letting searchers know that your business has returned to “normal” and set that date further out so it won’t expire right away.
“Customer Actions” shows how the listing is being utilized: visiting the website, requesting directions, or calling. If you see that you are getting calls, but haven’t been available to answer the phone due to business disruptions, it might be a reminder to update your voicemail, provide a temporary number or add a voice menu option to help callers get access to the information they are looking for.
Keep on Distilling
Maintaining your Google My Business is essential, especially in our COVID-19 world where “regular business hours” do not mean the same thing anymore. You should do it because 1. It connects people to you and your business; 2. It enhances your credibility and reputation through reliability; 3. It’s free.
Need help managing or setting up your Google listing? Contact us today.