Your online reputation may make or break your business, and it’s not just going to manage itself. In an earlier post, we introduced two of the primary places for you to interact, influence, and grow your business, Google My Business and LinkedIn Business Pages.
Google My Business allows you to manage your Google Business listing and appear in the ultra-valuable “Local Pack” (map) section of Google’s SERP (Search Engine Results Pages). LinkedIn Business Pages helps you establish your business through thought leadership, network professionally, and generate leads, especially in the B2B space.
Although the two entities are quite different, there is significant crossover in terms of best management practices. Heed these 5 optimization tips and watch your business grow!
Win Business By Providing an Informative Business Profile
Now is not the time to be mysterious! Both Google My Business and LinkedIn provide you an opportunity to share pertinent company information and promote your products/services, both through filling out key fields and via descriptive writing.
These include the NAP (Name, Address, Phone Number), business hours, location, but importantly, what you do and how you serve your customers. Share your information completely and accurately to impress your target audience and make it easy for them to find you and connect with you. This will please the almighty Google algorithm. Leave incomplete (or worse yet inaccurate) information and be punished.
Google also provides a section for Q&A, allowing you to answer customer queries, or pre-populate your own FAQ as well as an Appointment Booking link, making it easy for your clients to reach you.
Alternatively, LinkedIn’s 2000 character “about us” section is your chance to let people know what you’re all about, so write it with the customer in mind. LinkedIn also allows you to display a button next to your profile to make it easy for visitors to connect with you.
Pro Tip: Don’t be afraid to use a few keywords, for search purposes, but avoid excessive keyword stuffing. Not only will it read poorly, but it will hurt your SEO ranking.
Optimize Photos for Google My Business and LinkedIn
Humans are visual creatures, and a picture is worth a thousand words. Photos, logos, and banners are a great way to catch somebody’s attention and spark their interest. Google Business listings that include photos get 42% more requests for driving directions and allow you to showcase your business and team members, while LinkedIn company pages with profile pictures receive six times more visits than those without.
Be sure to use high quality images, and crop them correctly! Update your LinkedIn banner regularly to call attention to new promotions, or to correspond with seasonal themes. Consider including a call to action in your imagery, and never waste an opportunity to showcase your company’s personality!
If you’re not sure about the correct image sizing, refer to our Social Media Image Guide. Invest the time and let your online presence shine.
Pro Tip: Canva is one of many great tools for creating slick visuals, so don’t skip out on the pre-prep!
Post and Engage with Your Audience Regularly
Online, as in life, “you’ve gotta give to get”. Your LinkedIn page will see far more action if you’re posting regularly. Think like a customer and provide well rounded value with your content. Showcase your staff, offer insightful thoughts on issues related to your industry, and share compelling third party content. Of course you are going to want to promote your company, but avoid being too salesy in all of your posts, lest you chase off your audience.
While posting to Google My Business may not garner the same amount of user activity as a LinkedIn post, it’s certainly not a waste of time. Staying active will indicate to Google that your account is a live one. Furthermore, there’s no telling how many searchers will consume your content, even if they don’t interact with it.
Consider using a content calendar to help ensure that you stay organized and consistent. Including relevant hashtags can also increase engagement with your followers.
Pro Tip: Google will only display roughly the first 80 characters of your posts on the Knowledge Panel, so focus on making them engaging and link to your website for the full blog post.
Take Advantage of Product Editor & the Showcase Page
If you are selling physical products or productized services, utilize Google My Business’ Product Editor. Found under the “Products” tab in your GMB profile, it’s an easy way to display and advertise some of your great products! Don’t forget to include details, pricing, and, of course, a stellar photo.
Likewise, LinkedIn’s Showcase pages allow you to show off a certain product line, but it doesn’t end there. Showcase pages can also be used to highlight a certain company milestone, promote an initiative or event, or any other aspect of your company that makes you proud. It can also be used to reach a specific audience with a targeted message and content.
Businesses underutilize these tools, so get ahead of the pack with a great display today!
Encourage Good Google Reviews, Respond to Bad Ones
Google Business reviews are a popular way for customers to detail their experiences with companies.
People like sharing their thoughts about positive experiences, and they absolutely love spilling tea after negative encounters. The trick is to maximize the frequency of the former, while minimizing the damage caused by the latter.
To help with this, remind satisfied clients to sing your praises by emailing them a link to your Google review page or simply asking them in person or on the phone.
Naturally, your first line of defence against negative reviews is to simply perform perfectly at all times. Unfortunately, even this tall task won’t completely mitigate the possibility of some negative feedback.
However, don’t let these negative reviews fester! Address them humbly, indicate your commitment to rectifying the situation, and, whenever possible, move the exchange offline. Never resort to mudslinging, and avoid using keywords that could show up on future searches.
A robust stockpile of reviews will not only allow you to interact with your customers and showcase their (hopefully) positive experiences, but also serves as a key component of local SEO. Ranking for terms that include “near me”, or appearing in local sections of the Google results page are critical ways of attracting the attention of would-be customers at precisely the moment they seek to make a decision.
Managing your online reputation requires a lot of effort, but it’s potential to help your business grow makes it time well spent. In addition to attracting customers, your well curated online presence might even attract talent to your organization.
As part of our Personalized Website Solutions, Peak Ed Designs is pleased to offer a comprehensive and valuable Online Reputation Development Package to our clients, ensuring that they’re set for success. Our approach to online presence is a holistic one, and we’d be happy to help you establish all the tools you need to grow your reputation and your business.
Ask us about the Online Reputation Development Package and optimize your online presence.