We recently shared tips on claiming and optimizing Google My Business listings. Today we’re going to provide three additional advanced optimization tips to help your listing stand out from other property management companies in your area.
1). Google Posts
Google recently launched Posts, which are similar to ads or social media posts. Posts appear in Google searches within your Google My Business listing. You can create Posts within your Google My Business dashboard. These are great for several reasons as they:
- Are a free form of advertising
- Allow you to make your listing more visual when images are added
- Include a call-to-action encouraging users to click
- Enable you to choose where users go, whether it’s to one of your social media pages or a specific page on your website
We highly recommend taking advantage of Posts because not many businesses are using this new feature. Consider trying out the following types of Posts:
- Events: Are you hosting an open house at one of your communities? Consider creating a Post promoting this event! Be sure to include details about the event, such as date, time, location, as well as an eye-catching image and a landing page for people to RSVP.
- Announcements: Did you just win a new community’s business? Consider linking to your press release announcing the new customer joining your portfolio.
- Blog posts: Do you have an awesome blog? Consider sharing your new articles as Posts!
- New services: If your company starts offering new services, be sure to share these within a Post.
Please note that Posts are temporary, so you’ll need to continue writing new ones to have them appear in your listing. Posts typically stay live for seven days before disappearing.
2). Text messaging
You can now setup a text messaging service for your Google My Business account. This is a great way to offer another platform for prospective customers to get in touch with your business. Similar to Posts, you will need to go into your Google My Business dashboard to enable messaging. Within there, you can setup an automated message that will be delivered to anyone who texts you. This is great opportunity to tell them that the message was received and that someone will be in touch with them shortly.
If you don’t want texts to be sent directly to a team member’s phone, no worries, you can use Google’s new messaging app, Allo. This will allow messages to be sent directly to your Allo account and not a cellphone, keeping business and personal messages separate.
Please note that we only recommend using this feature if you can assign a dedicated team member to frequently check on and respond to messages. If you enable this feature and no one ever checks messages, it can leave both prospective and current customers upset.
3). Questions and answers
Did you know that Google searchers can ask questions about your business that other users can answer? Well they can with the new Google My Business questions and answers feature. This feature provides you with key insights about the main questions prospective customers have about your business. Over 25% of Google My Business listings have questions, many of which go unanswered.
It’s important to note that Google does not send notifications when a new question is asked. That's why you must assign a team member (hint, perhaps the team member in charge of responding to text messages) to check your listing once a week for new questions.
Unfortunately, checking for questions is a bit of a hassle, as you cannot see or answer them within your dashboard. The best workaround for checking for questions is to download the Google Maps app on your on your phone and make sure notifications are turned on. Log in to the account used to manage your listing, and you will receive push notifications every time a new question is asked. Make sure your team member checks for answers from people outside your business to ensure those are correct.
Looking for additional ways to improve your overall strategy? Get your free copy of our whitepaper, Key Strategies to Promote an Informed and Efficient Community.