The Simple Tool that can Skyrocket your Local Business SEO


SEO. It’s that mysterious practise where having good rankings can grow your business on autopilot. Or perhaps your competitors’ business.

Maybe you’ve tried to work out SEO on your own, doing your own research or aiming to get all the ‘green lights’ in Yoast SEO. Or maybe you’ve enlisted the professionals, pouring thousands into trying to get your website to the coveted number one spot on Google, without much result (ouch!)

As a business owner, trying to figure out the mysteries of Google on your own can be daunting and frustrating. Especially if you haven’t been able to harness much success from it.

And I’m sure that what you really want isn’t just the street cred of getting to the top of Google. You want to be front and centre when your ideal customer is searching for you online. You want to be the obvious and number one choice when they Google {insert your business service here}.

And this means you need to be ranking well in Google, and preferably higher than your local competition, too!

And while a well optimised website can involve enlisting professionals, lots of money and months of work, there is one tool that is possibly the most underrated when it comes to local business SEO.

And guess what – you’ve probably already used it to some extent! Yep, it’s your Google My Business profile.

You’ve most likely got yours set up and you may have even filled out your profile with your business details and photos.

So what makes Google My Business so powerful when it comes to SEO?

To answer that question, we’ll need to look at what happens when we do a Google search.

A search for a service, business name, or even a product is most likely to bring up local results. This can be anything from searching for ‘mechanic’, ‘McDonalds’, or even ‘burgers’.

Searching for anything that could have a local solution, whether via desktop or on mobile, will bring up a local finder or map pack window.

There may be an ad or two at the top of Google. But before you reach any organic website listings, the local finder and map is at the very top of a Google search.

A search for pizza brings up local Google results

Can you guess what the local finder is filled with? Google My Business profiles. Contrary to what most realise, the local finders and maps are based off how optimised your GMB profile is, and not your website!

That means that your Google My Business profile has the potential to be more visible in Google than your website itself.

We’re living in an instant society and people want the best result quickly. This means they’re unlikely to scroll down the page to research their options, in favour of making a split second decision on which business looks the most promising from the top of page.

Depending on how large your local area is, and what your competition is like, you may already be in one of those top three local positions. Or if your competition is tough, you may not have a feature in this search tool.

How can You Check if Your Business is at the Top of the Map Pack?

Open up an incognito internet window. In chrome, go to File > New Incognito Window. Then search for the main service or product your business offers, with your location. Eg, ‘Physiotherapy Newcastle’, or ‘Mechanic Adelaide’.

Now you can view the map pack or local finder for your area. Are you listed in one of the top three positions? Or where is your business ranked?

Optimising your profile and getting it up to scratch will give your business more prominence in Google’s eyes. While regular website SEO can take months to see progress from, optimising your GMB profile can give you results in a much shorter time frame.

Once you’re listed in the top three (or even at the top) or a local map pack, your business is highly visible to your potential customers. They have the ability to quickly and easily view your location, hours, photos and other important info to decide if you have what they’re looking for.

The information listed in your profile can be the reason someone chooses your business over your competition!

So – What do you do to get to the coveted top three positions, and how do you optimise your GMB profile?

How to Optimise Your Google My Business Profile

Part of optimising your Google My Business profile involves filling in as many of the details in your listing as you can.

In the dashboard of your listing, you’ll be able to edit and add your business information. Keep in mind that Google is regularly adding to the list of features in this tool. And it’s best to use as many as are relevant to your business.

Optimising your Google My Business profile

Apart from making sure your details are filled in and accurate, there’s some best practices that are often overlooked, and some methods that can actually harm your listing!

As a quick example, let’s talk about your business name. In your profile, your business name should strictly and only include your legal, registered business name. This is one common mistake I see many businesses making!

Even if you have multiple business locations, keep your location out of your business name, unless it is officially part of your name.

Similarly, your name is not the place to add keywords, your services or offerings. Adding extras outside of your name in this section can harm your listing, appear as keyword stuffing to Google and can get you penalised.

In our Google My Business Masterclass, we walk through how to fill out each section of Google My Business account, how to optimise your profile, and what you need to avoid.

Making sure your GMB profile is optimised can quickly boost your online visibility, resulting in more clicks, calls, visits and customers for your business. If you’d like help with your profile and want to delve in to this online class, view the Google My Business Masterclass here.

Or if you have any questions about optimising your profile, reach out to us or leave a comment below. We’ll get back to you soon.

Needing to Chat with a Consultant?
Booking a one-hour zoom session with our Creative Consultants about your Website, SEO, Google Ads or Social Media is the best place to start.
I want to:
Book a Discovery Session
Test My Site
Login to My Account