Google My Business Mistakes You Need to Avoid

Spreading the word online about your business is made easier with Google My Business (GMB). This free tool can instantly boost your visibility because it gives you the opportunity to appear in search and Google Maps results. Potential customers can easily find you, even when they don’t enter your business name.

However, you can only reap the rewards with an optimised listing. It may seem easy and straightforward to manage Google My Business account, but many business owners still commit some mistakes that only backfire and hurt their marketing efforts.

Here are the most common GMB fails you should avoid:

Unclaimed listings

There’s no point in signing up for Google My Business if you do not claim your listing as you won’t have the ability to use its features. Any user can suggest edits on your address, phone number, and business hours. You will not have the ability to respond to reviews, and photos will be uploaded from customers. The list goes on.

What’s more, other companies can claim your listing, edit your information, and add their contact number and website. The GMB team will not be able to notify you about the changes, which can hurt your business. Additionally, Google might delete your unclaimed listing if they received edit suggestions from users saying your listing does not exist.

GMB verification options

Photo courtesy of Google

There are several ways to claim your GMB listing, depending on your needs and preferences. Make sure you prioritise this step so you can control how your Knowledge Panel appears on search.

Neglecting photos

When people look for your business on Google, one of the first things they notice is your GMB photos. They want to see your building’s street view, taking note of landmarks in case they pay a visit and know how your actual office looks like. This leaves a lasting impression on your potential customers.

Many businesses often overlook the pictures on their GMB listing. More often than not, they only have the Street View and low-quality photos from their customers. There are also times when Google features an image from a wrong article or social media page on their knowledge panel.

Take photos of your store’s interior and exterior, with and without people. Show off your brand personality and let your prospects see what it’s like to shop (or work) at your business.

Wrong map pin location

Map pins are often in the wrong place, which can be confusing for your potential customers as many of them are using GPS programs. Some map pins are in the middle of the street or at the opposite end of your building. If people can’t find you, they may think that your business closed down or moved elsewhere.

If you entered your business address correctly but Google still can’t detect it, you can manually pin your location straight on the map. Wait for a few days to check if your location changes are already published in your GMB dashboard.

Incomplete or incorrect information

Many business owners fail to provide complete information in their GMB listing, such as their contact numbers, business hours, and website URLs. When potential customers don’t easily find the details they need to reach you, they are more likely to go to your competitors instead.

Another common mistake is providing inaccurate information. For instance, if prospects went to your old address only to find out that you have already moved out, they would get disappointed. They are more likely to leave a negative review and go elsewhere.

Once you set up Google business page, be sure that all of your information is complete and up-to-date. This keeps you from losing customers.

Improper response to business reviews

Online reviews are the most challenging to address yet the most important to manage. However, many business owners fail to see their value, especially when their company is already booming. Some don’t respond to reviews at all, positive or negative. Worse, others get offended by bad feedback and insult the reviewers. This only adds fuel to the fire and hurt your sales and reputation.

Prospects want to know how you treat your customers. They judge you based on your replies. They also read the feedback left by your customers to set their expectations. After all, they need assurance that your product or service is worth their time and money.

Always thank and acknowledge your customers for leaving reviews. If it’s a negative one, stay courteous and apologise for the discontent. Offer to fix the problem and give them your contact details so they can easily reach you. You can learn more about managing online reviews here.

Correct, complete, and consistent information is key to getting to amazing results from your listing. Proactive customer engagement comes next. These small efforts can drive more leads and sales, so don’t miss out on its advantages.

For your Google My Business optimisation needs, turn to DigitalMaas right away. We use best practices to make your GMB listing do the talking. Contact us to get started. You can also sign up to our digital marketing platform for your free site audit.