Much like Yellow Pages used to have a way for you to list your business in the Yellow Pages, Google has done that. And they’ve also made it easier for you to connect with the people that need your services. And a Google business profile is exactly that. A business can go, literally just type in, set up Google business profile.
And with, if you have a Google email, you set up for free and it’s your way and it’s your ability. To put in all the information about your business so the public can see it, uh, including location, hours of operation. Who are you hoping to serve by the category? And then if you offer services, what, what are those, if you offer products, what are those?
It, it, it’s just an overall encompassing way for you to actually get in front of anybody you wanted to on Google. That gives the ability to be able to find very, very quickly just by quickly googling your name or if somebody Googles or searches for the. Tasks that you’re doing free to show up in what they call the map pack or more.
Hello and welcome to another episode of dm shop talk. I’m mike our valorous circles Media production specialist and here with me as always I’m, jeremy, and i’m the senior marketing director for valorous circle. Awesome. We have a new episode here I have DM shop talk where we’re going to continue to, uh, invite people to join us in this journey, in this community to get business leaders in the home service industry and Avenue.
That they can come learn from each other, share stories, and learn some marketing trips along the way. So today, a few weeks back, Jeremy had an episode where we went down a list. It seems how we’re on the marketing side of things. We made a list of digital marketing tactics. As you will, things that we think would be of importance, a priority list that home service business owners should go down and follow to help take their business to the next level and continuing to build upon it.
And so I think if you agree today would be a great way to dive deeper into one of those, one of those steps that we talked about. Absolutely. Last week, we talked about the importance of building a business. Not building a business. Building a website. Yeah, building a website, obviously. Building a website for your home service business.
So if you’re a plumber, electrician, uh, roofer, having that, that, that website is important. But now we need to talk about how are we going to get, how are we going to get people to that website to see it. And if we follow what we discussed a few weeks back, that next step would be really getting presence on Google.
And by doing that is… Creating that Google business profile. Jeremy, why is it important for a plumber or an electrician once they build their website to create a Google business profile? That’s a great question. So one of the most often questions we hear are, how can I get funding on Google better or more?
And truth be told is Google actually gives you the tools to have the ability to do that. And one of them that they provide for free is that Google Business Profile. It’s, it’s a great way for any business, whether it’s brick and mortar or service industry business, to claim their fame on Google Maps.
It’s pretty great. So, I guess if, if you were someone, scenario, a plumber who just started their business and they want to create what, how would you go about creating a Google Business Profile? Maybe go in a little bit depth. What is a Yeah, much like Yellow Pages used to have a way for you to list your business in the Yellow Pages.
Google has done that and they’ve also made it easier for you to connect with the people that need your services. And a Google Business Profile is exactly that. A business can go, literally just type in, set up Google Business Profile. And with, if you have a Google email, you set up for free and it’s your way and it’s your ability to put in all the information about your business so the public can see it.
Including location, hours of operation, who are you hoping to serve, by the category, and then if you offer services, what are those, if you offer products, what are those. It’s just an overall encompassing way for you to actually get in front of anybody you wanted to on Google that gives the ability to be able to find very, very quickly just by quickly Googling your name or if somebody Googles or searches for the tasks that you’re doing for you to show up in what they call the map pack or more.
I would say, as you say, the very first step is getting that listed up and going. You can’t compete in a competition that you haven’t even entered yet. So by, by what you’re saying, Jeremy, it’s the first step is getting your listing out there, getting listed on connecting your bit or your website to that, that Google business profile.
But obviously the next step is as the internet continues to grow, as there’s more home service businesses growing, it’s going to get more competitive. So now that we’ve entered that contest, we’ve entered that competition, where to be some ways that businesses can distinguish themselves from other plumbers, from other electricians, from other roofers?
Great question. I think you and I are both big advocates of Google reviews. If you perform a service, getting somebody to review your business, hopefully positively, would be a great first step in my opinion. And it’s not hard, Google actually provides you with the links to get somebody and you can actually make that part of your processes.
So after you close on a job, send people that link, see how they’re doing or have it automated for you. So I’d start one with reviews and then two, consistently updating the profile, right? Adding content on a regular basis. And Mike, you’re a specialist, a specialty, your specialty is actually doing that.
Explain that process for a business owner, what should they be doing for updating the Google Business Profile? So first, as you said, setting it up, obviously, unless you’re moving, unless you’re switching, when you put your name, when you put your address, when you put your phone number, those three things are going to stay constant.
So what else does Google offer? And that would be photos. Photos is a huge way. to continue to update your Google business profile. Let them know, hey, we’re still active. We’re still a good business. We’re still doing work. So if you continue to take pictures of your jobs, a plumbing job well done, a roofing job well done, and you just keep uploading them to your Google business profile, not only does that kind of trigger wave a hand in Google’s face to let them know that we’re still an active business, but it’s also a really cool tool for potential customers that come across.
Your business on Google to see those jobs, to see your work online. So it has a two fold back and back there. I would also contribute by updating your business profile is posts. It honestly, just like any other social media, just like Facebook. Just like Instagram, just Twitter, AKA x. com. Just like everything right now, we can actually host to your Google business profile.
And the easiest way to do that is as we talked about a little bit about the website and the content that you’re continuing to post on your website. So the blogs, you should be cross posting those blogs onto your Google business profile because as Jeremy can take what I’m about to say to the next level, But Google and like really ranking online is really a game of connecting the dots.
And so Google is this massive engine and it’s obviously continuing to grow smarter. There’s a lot of people running it, creating algorithms to do it. But it’s our job, it’s business owners jobs, the marketers, to help Google. dots. And so by everything that we do, we want to help create that pathway. So if we post a blog onto the website, if we cross post the link to your Google business profile, that’s just another way for us to tell Google that we’re connecting what we’re doing.
We’re connecting those dots. And that’s the same thing with, I also want to take a step back. And say, the importance of NAP, Jeremy, name, image, or name, address, phone number. How important is it to have a consistent name, engine, or name, address, and phone number across the board on all of your social, all of your digital platforms, directories, and websites?
It’s very important. It’s especially important for Google because they’re going to be looking to make sure You are a valid business, right? We’ve talked to people who forget to switch out their phone number on a different platform, and you can actually get deranked for providing bad information.
Google’s promise to its consumers is that they want to connect you with the best services out there. If they find that you’re trying to do something, I don’t want to say shady, but if you’re misinformed on an action you should take, if your name, address, and phone number are misrepresented across the board, there’s a really good chance that you can actually get de ranked for that pretty quickly, actually.
Yeah. And it takes a while to get cleaned up, to be honest with you. Yes, it does. They take it serious, and it’s one of those things where it’s just like, they can do what they can do. To get rid of the spammers, the fake businesses out there. They’ll take the extra strut, your struts. So if you do any, if you even just step out of the line, just a little bit, fortunately could, could cost you.
So it’s very important to do optimizing Google the right way. I want to take nap, the name, address, phone number to the next level. It can be very as particular as. If your business on your website is Bob’s Builders LLC, then on your Google business profile, it shouldn’t be just Bob’s Builders. It should be Bob’s Builders LLC.
In our minds, it’s such, such a minute detail, but in Google’s eyes, it’s, it’s a computer. It’s just going through text and text. So every little detail like that matters. And so, if it’s consistent there, then your Facebook should also, it shouldn’t be just Bob’s Builders, it should be Bob’s Builders LLC.
Elaborating that name, that NAP, name, address, phone number needs to be the exact same. Across all the boards, because once again, Google can try to connect the dots across the internet, but anything that could cause a little hiccup or for it to slow down, it will. So we just want to be able to help it as much as it can and have that exact consistent NAP across the board.
If you’ve seen that, maybe an example of someone, something like something minute like that, that maybe hurt someone with their Google Business Profile ranking, Jeremy. Oh, yeah, we’ve seen it before. I’m not going to give specifics, but yeah, we don’t want to throw anybody under the bus. But what maybe what’s like the story?
What? Wait a minute. Yeah, good. This is a good, this is a good, good story. If a business owns a storage facility to actually store their equipment in and pick it up and use it as needed. That is definitely not your business address. I’m going to put it that way. If you try to sell business, Google, it’s your business address.
There’s a really good chance that. your name, address, and phone number, Google sees it as you’re trying to deceive somebody. And so always make sure that if you don’t have an address, don’t put the address in there. You can do a service area. Having an address is like a huge bonus because it gives Google a pin drop and it has a radius on there of your service areas.
It also means that if somebody’s right up next to your business and they search for you, they’re going to find it very quickly. Um, but yet the name, address, phone number, if they don’t match, or if you try to What Google sees as being misrepresentative on where people can actually locate you, meaning they can’t go to a storage facility to find out or to knock on the door and say, Hey, I have a complaint.
That’s going to be a big issue. And you can actually get blacklisted from Google. And it would take a long time to get that fixed just from her personal experience. That’s a huge one too. So we talked about the name. We talked about the address. Phone numbers are a little bit more tricky too, Mike, because you’re allowed to have tracking numbers, right?
So like we could set you up with a tracking number. That’s okay if it’s on your Google business profile, as long as it’s also on your website, if that makes sense. So you want to make sure that the two are talking all the time as well. Cohesiveness. Exactly. We always try to, like, if we’re using a tracking number, Jeremy, we, I know our best practice is to try to have both.
Like, we’ll have the regular number and the tracking number on the website, so Google allows you to list a couple phone numbers, it’s not just one, so just for consistency, Google can see both the tracking number and the regular number on both Google business profile. And the website just to avoid any hiccup like that whatsoever.
But you bring up a good point when it comes to loopholes and I know that one of the biggest things when it comes to just working with Google or going through your Google business profile and then just like SEO in general is really try to avoid those loopholes, those click bait hacks that you might see online.
Because as, as we’re trying to get across. The best thing that you can do to get your Google business profile to rank is by following Google’s rules. There’s going to be videos, you’re going to come across different links, things of people trying to encourage you like, Oh, here’s your, here’s a hack that you can do to trick Google into ranking better than your competitors.
You’re going to see that all over the place. And to be honest, if you trick Google, it might work, it might work for a day, might work for a week, but as soon as Google catches that you tried to trick them and they come down, they’re going to come down. You’re going to get your Google business profile suspended and maybe even terminated in general.
And it’s once again, Google is a massive entity, so unfortunately you’re a little small, your smaller roofer electrician business. It’s not going to be a priority of theirs to try to get your listing back up and running. So that’s why we want to say be out and in front with it. Instead of trying to find loopholes around Google’s rules, follow the rules and take advantage of the rules that they have set in place instead of trying to go outside of what they’re offering.
And I know Jeremy, you’re really on top of. Really monitoring Google’s updates. They have a few times a year, they’ll update their algorithm and come out with new things of how they’re really searching through SEO and different websites and how they work with their Google business profile. And recently at the end of 2023, or I guess that would be at the end of 2022 and the beginning of 2023, they really adjusted what they call EAT.
Jeremy, I know you’re always on top of these Google updates and something that’s really come out this past year. Thank you. That Google’s really pushing is their acronym EAT, E E A T. Could you maybe dive deep into what that is and how business owners could really use that to take advantage of their Google business profile?
Yeah. So EAT is an algorithm or a recipe businesses can do that if they do it right, they have a better chance of ranking on Google. So I’m going down a rabbit hole, which I think is okay. But EAT stands for experience, expertise. Authoritiveness and trust. And so when you post things online that show your experience, show your expertise, show your authority and what you’re posting and that people can trust you, there’s a really good opportunity for you to actually rank for the items that you’re writing about or you’re talking about.
So you’re talking about a service, make a Google post showing people that you have the experience. So you’ve been doing this for how many years? Why are you the expert? Make sure that you, they have the option to know you’re the authority in your area. What, what makes you the authority? Is it the locations that you serve?
Is it going to be the service that you provide? How many years have you been doing that? Make sure you explain that in your post, right? And then trust. Why should people trust you? Is there a guarantee? Is it because people have given you so many positive reviews? So make sure like in that post, you can tell people, this is why we have 300 five star reviews for a service because people know that they can trust us.
And when you do those posts, make them creative, but make sure that they’re telling the truth, right? You could do that from your phone. I know that when we talk about updating the Google business profile, we didn’t tell you how to do updates, but pretty much if you have the Google app on your phone and you Google your business, it’ll show that as long as that email is what you signed your account in with.
You should be able to manage that account pretty easily and then just all you have to do is post an update and if you post an update like on any other social media profile, you’ll be doing fantastic. Make sure that when you do those posts, if it’s not linked back to your blog, if you’re taking a picture out in the field because you’re a damage restoration company and you did a job well done, take a picture, tell the story of what happened in that house.
Relying on the EAT algorithm, experience, expertise, authority, authoritiveness, and trust. Make sure that’s part of the algorithm with link back to your website. I think you’ll actually see your grounds of ranking improved over time for sure. Went off a little rabbit hole there, but I think it was definitely needed, especially for our topic today.
So, yeah. I think it helps too because we can, we can sit here and say, you need to be telling business owners, you need to be posting. out of your Google business profile, but that doesn’t really mean they know what they should be posting. So following that, those examples that you’re giving, really giving testimonies, examples of their jobs well done to earn that trust and show their expertise, showing little snippets, their testimonies, showing maybe their testimonials from their five star Google reviews in their posts as well.
Um, stuff like that is really always going to not only Give you credibility in Google’s eyes, but it’s also going to give you credibility in potential customers eyes as well. Because obviously that’s the end goal. We can sit here and play the Google game all day long. But at the end of the day, your job is to what you’re trying to do is build your business by getting more leads.
And that’s what we’re trying to help you do. That’s what Google’s trying to help you do. And so it’s all kind of different parts of the same machine here. Yep. So, Mike, I have a question for you. Okay. What’s that? What are things that people should not do on their Google Business profile? Should not do.
Okay. So this is always something, once again, I always encourage you to continue to look at what Google is updating, but I know for one, they don’t like spamming. And there’s, there is a difference. I think there is a fine line. I think a lot of business owners can think that like posting a lot is spamming.
And I would disagree with that. Posting a lot is not spamming. That’s really getting in front of your audience. I would actually encourage a lot of people to post consistently and post a lot. The fine line where it turns into spamming is if you are posting the same thing. A lot. And so if you’re, if you’re Google really doesn’t like you posting if you’re posting duplicate posts, so you post this here that you wait a week and then post the same thing.
Google will flag that there. It’s a learning machine, and so they will know that they will flag it and they’ll suspend you. The same thing too, is they have their own tools. So it’s just like when you’re posting onto Google, You can click like if they want, if you want them to call you, if they want the, if you want potential customers to go to your website, like you can pick your call to action through Google.
So they already have their tools in set. So they don’t like you putting your number or website really in your Google posts on top of their tools just because they view that as spammy as well. It’s just like they already have the tools. Once again, this is just a suggestion to continue. Google has the rules.
They have the tools. Use them and don’t come off as spammy as call me, call me, call me on those Google posts just because they have a call button at the bottom. Utilize that and it’s a great tool as well. So those are the two things. Don’t be spammy. Don’t use duplicate content. And then it’s also just respectful.
Don’t duplicate your own content, but also don’t try to spam other people as well. If you’re going to reference other people’s work, always make sure to credit them as well because Google We’ll obviously be able to check plagiarism as well. So if you’re a quote something, obviously if there’s some, uh, uh, a blog from someone else’s website that you want to use, you can easily use it.
Just make sure you give it, give credit back to them as well. Just always giving credit back to the original authors or artists as well. So anything else that. You think on top of what I just said that you should avoid when it comes to your Google business profile? Yep. So, uh, number one is don’t hashtag.
So you can’t hashtag inside of your updates at all and each update will actually give you the call to action. So like what Mike said call now, learn more, whatever have you. So make sure you do the appropriate action for whatever you’re posting. Learn more would be a link back to your website. So, we don’t keyword stuff.
Meaning, if you’re a water damage restoration, only say it like once or twice in the post. Don’t do it over and over again. Google smells what you’re doing. You can tell stories very easily without keyword stuffing. I think that’d be the key. To writing the appropriate message for the public, put it that way.
One other thing too is Google offers you the ability to post products and also services and don’t mix the two up. A product really is something that you sell online via an e commerce store. Not a lot of plumbers or restoration companies. Electricians have a product or an e commerce store attached to their services.
So just make sure that you don’t put anything on your product unless they have the ability to check out online. And the second thing is services. Make sure that you put details of what your services are, no matter how long or small. If it’s a service you offer, make sure that those are updated appropriately as well.
So those are my three. No, that’s good. And I also want to, I want to encourage We touched on a little bit earlier in some of our other podcasts, but honestly, I think one of the most frequently marketing questions, so not even just Google business related, but marketing questions that I get from business owners that we work with is how do I respond?
To a negative review. So obviously reputation management with your Google reviews is so important. It’s so easy to make sure you thank the people that leave good reviews and appreciate show appreciation to them. But Jeremy, how would you, someone, someone leaves a negative review. They had a bad experience with your plumbing business, like the job that you did or something happened and they left a negative review, negative review.
What would you say to them? How would you respond to that in an appropriate manner? There’s, there’s the PC way, the politically correct way. I think the politically correct way, probably the right way in most circumstances. And that’s number one, be concerned, right? If you get left a negative review, is that a lapse in your service?
And if it’s a lapse in your service, is there a way to make it better in the future? So one, I would apologize to the person that had a bad experience and I’d say, we’d like to have a phone call with you to see how we can make it right. If not for them, for the, for a future person, I think what you don’t want to do is get into a battle online.
So if you reply. And then they reply, and then you reply, and pretty soon what’s going to happen is nobody wins in that circumstance. So show all the public that you’re willing to make things better if something was done, uh, on their end, or somebody was unhappy with the service you provide. See if you can make it better in the future.
And if you can’t, you can’t please everybody. And even the smallest thing can make somebody leave you a bad review. And if it’s something that you are sincerely apologizing for, apologize and be done. If it’s something that your team can improve on, put systems in place to improve it. But don’t argue. Do not argue online.
It just makes you look petty. Pretty much that’s what it comes down to. And I wouldn’t say maybe just as bad, but close up to it is ignoring the negative review as well. Yeah. If you ignore it, that tells Google that basically you might just be accepting blame or you’re just not really. Once again, you’re not an active business because the more you’re active on your Google business profile, that makes Google happy.
If you’re just ignoring those reviews, then that just tells Google you just don’t really care, and they’re gonna, they’re gonna decline or not really respect that. If you’re not showing you care, then they’re gonna negatively impact your rankings as well. So don’t ignore the negative reviews. Don’t only be responding to the positive reviews.
Respond to all of them, but just reiterating what Jay, Jeremy said. Do it in a respectful way and then I would just always encourage them if they want to talk more about it to schedule a time to meet with you personally off a public domain to discuss the situation at hand further. Jeremy said it great.
Just keep it off the public domain. We see enough on social media people bickering back and forth, but whatever it is. So, when it comes to your business, that’s the last thing you want to be doing. So, keep it off. Yeah, nobody wins when you’re arguing online. And Google sees it. And then, yeah, I was also going to say, other people see it as well.
Not just Google. Other people see it and see that you’re disrespecting or be coming off as disrespectful as well, and then they won’t want to work with you. So make sure, just like you do with any other business practice, if you’re running a business, if you’re a business owner, act in a very respectful, professional way.
Perfect. Yeah, I got one more Google hack before we actually call it a day, Mike. And that is, if you want to show up in the map pack for certain areas, start making sure the content on your website reflects what you, what area you want to serve. Write blogs about the locations that you serve, right? There’s a really nice neighborhood that’s by something that’s like geographically known.
So let’s say there’s an area by a museum that you want to start working. Make sure on your website it reflects that you provide that service by that geographic location. And then make sure on that blog post that you’ve written, that gets keyed back into the Google Business Profile as an update as well.
That’s a hack to start showing up on the map pack a little bit easier based on what your competition may or may not be doing. I was just saying to go hand in hand with that is utilizing the people also ask feature. So if you’re an electrician business and you just want, you just want to write for like electricians near me.
And when you type that in, if you scroll just a little bit down that front page on Google, you’ll get the people also ask me or people also ask section. It’ll just be a list of frequently asked questions. If you just take those phrases and make those blog topics, then you can start ranking for those as well, which will also help you.
It will appear in rank in the map pack as well, just a little like that. It’s not guaranteed you’ll rank, just making sure people know that, but it will help you and it’ll make sure that you’re writing relative, relevant content to what Google’s looking for. Exactly. To, to further touch on that eat point, that relevant.
Yeah. We’re building up that authoritiveness and that gets built up over time. You can’t be, you can’t come out of the web on your website day one and be like, I’m the authority. I’m the almighty authority. You have to build that up and, uh, that takes a little bit of time. So exactly. Nope. That’s really good.
So in a nutshell, this Google business profile, obviously it’s like most things, the more you dive in, the more you learn about how Google business profile works, the better you can serve, the better you can help rank your business, continue to grow as Jeremy just said, continue to build that authority and so on and so forth.
So always, if you can take one thing away from today. Just be active on your Google business profile. I should say first, make sure you have your Google business profile listed and then just be active on it. Be posting on it. Be interacting with those reviews because you’ll be surprised on how well Google will reward you from that than compared to not touching it as all or at all.
So, Jeremy, do you have any parting words regarding Google business profile? Same thing that you were said. Just make sure that you’re honest and be trustworthy as well. Nope. That’s good. That’s good. Alrighty. As we said, just another episode wrapping up with the digital marketing shop talk, DM shop talk. As of right now, we’re just, Jeremy and I are going to continue to share just marketing tips that we can hopefully that will help you build your, continue to build your presence online with your home service businesses.
We would love for anyone who sees this to, to come onto our podcast and have a discussion with us. We’d love to chat. About what you, what your business successes looked like, what are some positives? What are some things that you’ve done to build your business and maybe some things that you might not have done well that you’ve learned from her and you were to overcome because as we say every podcast we want this to be a community of Home service businesses to learn from one another and to help build each other up because we all live in the same world There’s plenty of work to go around.
So just helping People encouraging people, encouraging other businesses is a great way to just continue to build your own business as well. So thank you again, and we hope everyone has a great day.