11th September 2015
5 Reasons To Optimise Your Google+ Business Page
Google+ is a strange beast. It’s the network that everyone has but no one uses. As a social network it never really took flight, but there are plenty of benefits that many seem to miss out on. It is Google after all. So dust off those logins, because we have five ways that you can boost your organic presence with the help of your Google+ page.
Verify Your Website On Google+
The key action to allow your Google+ page to impact your website is to link the pages together. From Google’s perspective it ensures that your page is legitimate and allows your Google+ page to begin appearing in organic search results. From a user perspective it also reassures visitors that they are in the right place, and haven’t stumbled across an unofficial or copycat page.
You can verify your Google+ page in a variety of ways, such as using Google Webmaster Tools. To find out more about verifying your website, check out Google’s verification process.
List Your Business In Google Local
Whether you are a physical store or a service based business that visits clients, Google Local will help you in Google results.
A focus on local listings can essentially help to raise brand awareness. By ranking for terms locally, you can get on page 1 of the results where perhaps you wouldn’t have in regular results.
If you don’t have a Google Local page, or have an existing Google+ company page with no local listings, you can create a Google Local page for your business. Google has a helpful guide on connecting a page to Google Maps for both new and existing Google Businesses.
Google’s recent change to the Map listings in search results means that you only see the top three locations “above the fold”, and users have to expand the list to see further changes. This increases the challenge to get on page 1 of Google through Local listings, but you will also reap the rewards of doing so as you knock your competitors below the fold.
Complete Your Google+ Page Setup
Now that you have a verified Google+ page that is appearing in organic and local search listings, there is no excuse to have a page that isn’t as complete and optimised as possible.
As expected, the page title should be your brand name. But have you considered the locality of your page? Look at your G+ page title. Are you Classic Shoe Shop based in Kettering? Or are you Classic Shoe Shop Kettering? It is a slight change that will aid your local pages appearing for the term “shoe shop kettering” and “classic shoe kettering”.
Ensure your description is clear and enticing for users. Explain your benefits, the products or services you offer and end with a strong call to action to get them involved.
Ensure you have a complete set of contact details on the page to maximise the chances of customers getting in touch. Website URL, phone number and email address are the key fields, but social channels may also be an option.
If you are a retailer, these images will appear in Google search results on brand name searches in particular. The best way to showcase your product offering is by getting high quality and relevant photos of your products and storefront on your Google+ page.
Encourage Customers To Leave Google+ Reviews
If users are finding you on a journey of discovery through non-branded keywords, it’s unlikely that they know much about you or your service. The best way for them to be reassured of your credentials is through reviews.
You can encourage your existing customers to review you on Google+ by reminding them on social media, via email or within a newsletter.
These star reviews will appear in the Local listings, so there is extra emphasis to get your customers to leave their reviews and help to increase your click through rates in searches.
Post Regularly On Google+
Google likes G+ pages which are regularly active on the network, and a little bit of effort will go a long way. Whilst this may not directly affect your website’s organic positions within Google, you can ensure your page becomes an authority for certain terms within the Google+ network. From here you can gain clicks through to your website via Google+ referrals, and this will help to improve your website traffic.
If you already have a social media strategy for your business that involves sharing on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and so forth then you should add Google+ into this. Should you have Hootsuite or another social media management tool within your business, you can schedule posts to go out on Google+ automatically.
Simply sharing a post on Google+ with relevant hashtags – which are huge on Google+ and are the main way to get noticed on the network – can go a long way to helping your business establish a strong presence on Google+.