With a 92.47% market share as of June 2021, there is no doubt that Google dominates the search engine market. Your website’s ability to score high within Google’s search engine rankings is critical to gaining visibility and customer engagement as a business. The higher your site ranks, the more likely it is that organic traffic will be driven to you, resulting in highly qualified leads, brand loyalty, and trust, as well as, higher conversion rates and sales. But, while on-site SEO is important for this, Google is striving to give users what they are looking for directly in the SERPs, to reduce clicking or tapping on any one result. If you have a successful Google Business Profile (f.k.a. Google My Business or GMB), the interactions and results you receive from it may correlate with your website’s organic rankings.
A Quick Recap of What a Google Business Profile (GMB) Is
A Google Business Profile (GMB), is a powerful, free tool that helps businesses manage their online presence across Google Search, Google Maps, and Google Shopping. The free business listing allows you to add pertinent details about your business, such as:
- Operating hours.
- Health and safety measures.
- Phone number, website link, physical location.
- Business logo and photographs.
- Business attributes such as women-owned.
- Connect with customers via posts, offers, events, and direct messaging.
- Answer frequently asked questions.
- Show what you offer with regard to products and services.
- Take on bookings, quotes, and ordering.
- Get insights from reviews and respond to them.
By creating a business profile and keeping it up-to-date, you ensure that your potential customers have the latest information about your business, and that it’s verified to Google that it’s a legitimate business. Plus, you can gain valuable insights into how customers are interacting with you as it gives you the opportunity to engage with them through your listing.
6 Ways A Google Business Profile May Impact Your Websites’ Organic Rankings
A Google Business Profile, or formally GMB, is one of many factors that Google uses to generate its SERPs. While it may not be the primary factor, it can still play a role in your website’s organic rankings. Here are a few ways that having an optimized GMB profile can impact you:
Google’s algorithm is constantly evolving to provide users with relevant and useful results. When a user types in a query for a local search, Google looks at various factors to determine which websites are the best match. These factors are called relevance, prominence, and distance.
- Relevance refers to how well your website aligns with the user’s search intent. If you have a Google Business Profile and website content that aligns with the local search, you’re more likely to rank higher.
- Prominence refers to how well-known or popular your business is both offline and online. Your Google Business Profile (f.k.a Google My Business) contributes to this if the listing has many positive reviews, photographs, and interactions between your business and the customers. An increased prominence can lead to improved website ranking.
- Distance refers to how far away a potential search result is from the location phrase used in the user query. If you have a physical location listed on your Google My Business Listing, you may rank higher than a business that is further away. This is why it’s important to include your address and location on your GMB profile.
2. Customer Interactions
Google Business Profiles provide an opportunity to interact with customers, which can lead to increased website traffic and improved organic ranking. When customers leave reviews or engage with your posts on Google My Business, it sends a signal to Google that your business is active and relevant. These interactions show Google that people are interested in what you have to say, which could result in a better website ranking.
3. NAP (Name, Address, Phone)
One of the most important factors for local SEO is NAP consistency. This means that your business’ name, address, and phone number should be the same across all platforms—including your GMB profile and website. If there are discrepancies between these two listings, it may send mixed signals to Google, which could result in a lower website ranking.
Another factor that Google looks at when determining website ranking is click-through rate (CTR) and conversions. In other words, how often are users clicking on your website after seeing it in the SERPs? If you have a Google My Business profile with positive reviews, photos, and other engaging content, you’re more likely to have a higher CTR, which could lead to improved website ranking. Additionally, if users are clicking through to your website and taking the desired action (subscribing to your newsletter, filling out a contact form, etc.), this signals to Google that your website is relevant and useful, which could also lead to improved ranking.
5. Influence on Local SEO
In addition to impacting your website’s organic ranking, having a Google Business Profile can also influence your local SEO efforts. When you optimize your GMB profile and website for local SEO, you’re more likely to show up in the Local Pack—the map that appears at the top of the SERPs for local searches. Not only does it increase your visibility and website traffic, but it also leads to more customers and conversions.
6. Positive/Negative Reviews
One of the most important factors for your GMB profile is reviews. Google uses customer reviews as a signal of trust and relevance, which can help drive SEO performance. If you have positive reviews on your GMB profile, it’s likely that you’ll rank well on the Local Pack and Maps searches. Plus, if reviews themselves include keywords you’re ranking for, this can help boost that ranking up (this also applies to the question and answer section on GMB listings). Keep in mind, though, that negative reviews could lead to a lower website ranking.
So, What Does All This Mean For Your Business?
If you want to improve your website’s organic ranking, it’s crucial to create and optimize your Google Business Profile. By doing so, you can take advantage of the many benefits that GMB has to offer, which will ultimately lead to a higher website ranking.