As a small local business owner, you may think if you’re amazing at what you do your business doesn’t need to be on Google. While that may have been the case years ago, it’s not the case today. When everything is just a click away, thinking your business doesn’t need to be on Google is costing you a lot of money and potential customers.

One of the first places customers will go when looking for your products/services in their area is Google Search. About 81% of people will always turn to Google for answers or recommendations for local businesses. The easiest and quickest way to appear in a Google search is by setting up a Google My Business listing.

What is Google My Business?

GMB is a free local marketing tool that allows business owners to promote and manage their business profiles/websites on Google Maps and Google search. Customers are able to access information about your business easily – name, address, hours of operation, contact information, and website links.

Here are 5 reasons why Google My Business is a must-have for small local businesses:

Increase Online Visibility

One of the greatest benefits of creating a Google My Business listing is it increases your online visibility. Most people will only type a few words in the search bar when looking for a specific product or service, for example, “ice cream,” “patio furniture,” “Mexican food” – once they hit enter, Google generates the first three listings, or what’s also known as the Local 3-pack, it’s the holy grail of Local SEO, and where you want your business to be. Once you’ve verified your Google listing, you’re officially on the map giving potential customers a reason to visit your business.

Increase Traffic and Sales

Not only will having a Google My Business listing increase online visibility, but it can also help you increase your traffic and your sales. Remember, your Google listing connects customers directly to your “online store,” giving them a glimpse into your business; if they can browse through and make purchases smoothly, they’ll more than likely make the trip to visit your store location. Most of the time, especially now, your website is your first impression, so make it count.

Engage and Build Rapport With Your Customers

With any business, both local and international, the most important factor in keeping your doors open is customers. Engaging while building a rapport with them is crucial, and when you create your Google listing, you’ll have access to communicate with your customers, keep them up-to-date, and ultimately, understand their wants and their needs. As a result, you’ll have built trust and gained long-term, loyal brand advocates, who’ll keep coming back because they have confidence in what your business provides.

Receive Ratings and Reviews

Allowing your customers to communicate with you, to leave feedback, ratings, and reviews on your Google listing gives your business substantial credibility. When your customers have positive things to say, they’ll leave reviews on other platforms as well, such as Yelp, Facebook, Trip Advisor, etc. Reviews and ratings are also a ranking factor as Google collects data to determine where to place your business on the search results; the more positive reviews you have, the better. With that being said, any review is marketing and publicity you didn’t have to spend money on because it’s FREE – which makes a Google My Business profile a cost-efficient marketing tool for you to use!

Stand Out Against Competitors

If your competitors don’t have a Google My Business listing yet, take the first step and stay ahead of the pack. GMB has been helpful for many, especially during the global pandemic of Covid-19; business owners were able to let their customers and potential clientele know about changes in operating hours and even temporary closures. This saved so much time and energy since there was no need for their customers to leave their homes to see if the business was open or not.

If you’re a small local business owner and you don’t have a Google My Business profile yet, then you absolutely NEED one now, no ifs, ands, or buts; it’s simple and easy to create a profile, but we can help you with that.

Without a Google listing, you risk your business’s online visibility, which means fewer customers and fewer sales. You invested time, money, and effort to start your business; why not invest in a Google My Business listing to build your business to its maximum potential. Google is a powerhouse of a platform; don’t let your business fall short; you’d be surprised to see how much Google can do for you.

We’ve helped thousands of small local businesses across Canada with their Google and online presence; therefore, we know we can do the same for you. Give us a call to discuss which listing packages best suits your business’s needs.