How to Dominate Local Search Results with Google Posts
Think of Google Posts like social media posts for your GMB listing. These 100-300-word updates allow small businesses to create custom content that appears in the search and Google map results for location-based searches.
When someone searches online for your company or clicks on your business’s name after conducting a general search for related products or services, your post will appear in the Google “Knowledge Panel” under the address and contact information taken from the My Business listing.
As of October 2018, Google users can choose to “follow” your business to get alerts for when you post an update, making Google Posts an even more attractive option from a marketing standpoint. With the addition of the follow button, it’s even more important keep your listing up-to-date with fun and current posts to encourage engagement.
Keep in mind that Google Posts are not visible permanently. Typically, they are shown for a week before being archived, although you can remove it at any time prior to that. If you use a Google Post to advertise an event, however, the post will remain until the event ends.
Why Should I Use Google Posts?
With the rising popularity of mobile searches making it easy to find local businesses on the fly, consumers often visit a store within one day of finding the company, product, or service they need. With that in mind, you want to use every tool at your disposal to attract attention in the search results and make a connection with potential customers.
Google Posts are a great way to show what makes your business special. Here are some ideas to help you get started with creating content:
- Promote events such as grand openings, open houses, and guest speakers.
- Share current promotions including holiday specials and discounts.
- Showcase new products with features and benefits.
- Feature specific products and services— from free delivery to new menu items.
- Promote online booking capabilities for salons, restaurants, or installations.
- Tease new blog content.
You can use Google Posts in a lot of different ways, so make sure to mix it up. Get creative and let your brand voice shine through!
How Can I Get the Most Out of My Google Posts?
It’s not enough to just be listed. You need to stand out. An effective listing contains content that is interesting to the searcher and easy to understand.
With Google Posts, driving traffic to your website (and, subsequently, your storefront), is just a few easy steps away:
1. Be Succinct
Although you have space for up to 300 words, only the first 80 characters are automatically displayed. As such, it’s important that your content is clear and concise, yet interesting enough that potential customers want to click and read the rest. Use common abbreviations for days of the week or months to save character space.
2. Keep Your Message Clear
You’ll want to avoid including more than one main idea per post (for example: “Half price coffee and tea from 3-6 PM on Fridays, and buy 6, get one free donut on weekdays”). Too much information can quickly become overwhelming and lead to confusion when customers come through the door to cash in on the promotions.
3. Be Precise
What are the main things your customers need to know? Especially if you’re advertising a specific promotion, you’ll want to include the most important details in your post, such as cost, time/date, restrictions on the sale, and/or instructions for redeeming a promotion. (e.g. “Happy Hour! Half-price milkshakes from 5-6 PM every Friday.”)
4. Use Interesting Images
People don’t often read a page of text word-for-word. Images are the main elements that catch someone’s attention when they’re scanning through a post. So, if, for example, you’re posting for a restaurant, try a tempting picture of your most decadent dessert to get more customers in the door. Or, if you’re posting for an athletics club, you could try posting an image of an exciting exercise class. Photographs evoke emotion and curiosity. Adding an image to your post can drastically improve the click-through rate to your website. Make sure to use high-quality images that are no more than 750 pixels square. At this size, they will look good on different sized screens— both mobile and desktop.
5. Add a Button
Google gives you a list of potential “call to action buttons” you can use:
- Order online
- Learn more
- Sign up
- Get offer
- Call now
Choosing one of these options adds a link at the bottom of your post and directs searchers to the appropriate landing page. This can help you direct traffic to different parts of your website depending on the content of the post. With one click, customers can find information to sign-up for your newsletter, make a reservation, or even watch your YouTube channel.
6. Match Your Landing Page to Your Google Post
On that note, make sure your visitors are directed to a landing page that matches the content on the Google Post. For example, if your post is advertising a specific product and you want to drive traffic to your storefront, create a landing page to show off the new item, and include your physical address and contact info.
7. Use Appropriate Keywords
Use the keywords that are the best fit for your business. In adherence to SEO best practices, you’ll want to insert those keywords close to the beginning of your post (within the first 80 characters). However, don’t overstuff your post with keywords as it could seem spammy to readers. Focus on finding just the right words that give your potential customers all the information they need and nothing more.
8. Give Your Post Some Personality
Show what makes your business unique and inject some character into your posts. Also, make sure to capitalize on upcoming holidays or milestones (For example: “Winter is coming! Keep yourself warm with 30% scarves until October 1st”).
If used correctly, Google Posts are a great way to capture the attention of new customers. And if you’d like some help creating and optimizing Google Posts for your local business, we’re here to help!
Here at Michaels Wilder, we can go traditional with print and collateral or add cutting-edge video production, digital advertising, and graphic design to your current strategy. Our Listing Management Experts ensure your information is accurate and accessible. We provide your clients with a variety of online and offline options to contact you, improving performance and conversions.
We’d love to hear from you, so contact us today for more information or to set up an appointment.