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Creating a listing on Google can increase a business’ online exposure, but that alone isn’t enough to generate more leads.
Google currently holds a 78 percent majority in the search engine market. That’s a massive pool of potential leads. So how do you tap into it?
In this guide, we’ll go over a few ways to attract more leads and get the most out of your Google My Business account by taking these steps:
- Connect Google My Business with Google Analytics.
- Track leads through GMB Insights.
- Optimize a listing for lead capture.
1. Using Google Analytics with GMB
Using urchin tracking module (UTM) codes can help you accurately track how much traffic comes from a GMB listing to the main domain on a business website. Here’s how to set it up.
You can list a website for each location on a GMB listing. Users see this as that “Website” button on a GMB and map listing. It looks like this:
Some marketers use this to link back to the brand’s homepage. Don’t make the same mistake.
Instead, link to the location page for that location and include a UTM parameter, which looks like this:
With that URL you can segment any traffic that comes through the GMB listing and see its effectiveness by the number of Google Analytics goals they trigger.
Some example goals include the number of reservations, menu views, and take out orders placed.
GMB users can create these custom URLs through the Google Campaign URL Builder and then add the new URL through the GMB dashboard.
The benefits of tracking this behavior are huge. Local search traffic — visitors who are checking out a business’ GMB profile — are likely to covert. In fact, 53 percent of local search traffic is “low funnel,” and those consumers are likely to visit a business within 48 hours.
Analyzing the traffic, leads, and conversions that are referred to a brand’s site through its GMB listing provide a rich vein of marketing data that can help optimize a business.
For example, if you see that traffic from your Google My Business listing has a high bounce rate think about adding a local-focused lead capture to a location page. Add calls to action like “get directions,” “book an appointment,” and “visit us.”
Test these new initiatives, and do whatever you can to get that low-funnel traffic to convert.
2. Use GMB Insights to Track Customer Actions
A GMB account is more than a place where business listings are created for Google Search and Maps — customers use the listing to get directions, ask questions of a business, and make a reservation.
These actions are recorded by Google and provided to GMB in the Insights section of the dashboard.
Using Google My Business Insights to Understand Customer Actions
Looking at the Insights section provides a better understanding of trends that show how potential customers interact with a listing.
Insights can tell GMB users what a customer does after they view a listing. A graph chart – which views data over a week, month, or quarter – will show how many users perform actions like visiting a business website, getting directions, calling the business, or sending a message.
Those 4 actions are all points of “conversion” that rank at different levels within the funnel, and some of them are no-brainer leads that everyone should track.
Local marketers should look at the number of people who are getting directions to their locations each month and its overall trend.
Here are other metrics worth tracking:
Direction Requests (and Starting Location Data)
When these new leads ask for directions to the business, Google tracks their starting point, which GMB users can see on Insights.
This type of location information shows the starting location zip code for your leads.
This is helpful for local marketers because it shows where to refine marketing and product efforts in order to target potential customers in prominent areas. For example, if a restaurant chain gets plenty of traffic from suburban areas, a business can optimize its advertising strategy to hit those areas.
The Insights page also keeps track of phone calls, specifically the number of times people call a business and when they call during the day.
Similar to customer actions, businesses can use this data as a way to bring in more customers. They can make sure that someone is ready to take calls during peak hours and answer any questions from potential customers.
3. Optimize a Google My Business Listing for Lead Generation
Data gathering isn’t the only way to get leads. GMB users can also make improvements to listings to make sure they show up in more search results. When they do appear in local searches these optimizations also make listings primed for conversion.
Here are some best practices:
Customer reviews and ratings are important; even more so on Google. Research shows that 63.6 percent of people are likely to check up on a business’ Google reviews before they visit. Google also places a higher value on longer reviews so ask customers to leave detailed feedback.
However, it’s not enough to just have plenty of detailed reviews on a GMB listing. They need to be recent as well. In fact, 77 percent of consumers believe that reviews older than three months are no longer relevant, and 18 percent of customers are only interested in reviews from the past two weeks.
By asking for more recent and detailed reviews a business will see a massive influx of feedback. This can be difficult to manage for those with multiple locations, but there are some solutions out there that can help with review monitoring.
A short and detailed description with specific keywords not only tells Google more about a listing, but it can provide better matches for search queries. People looking for specific places can use these descriptions to decide whether or not a listing is worth their time.
Categories and Attributes
Using the right keywords to talk about a business can help a listing fit into the right category.
For example, a restaurant focusing on Asian fusion cuisine might not find it beneficial to fit into the “Asian Restaurant” category. The best option might be to actually use the “Asian Fusion Restaurant” category as the primary choice.
This idea of specificity is also why it’s important to have additional attributes in a listing. Things like a price range, hours, menu items, and amenities all answer questions that potential customers might have about a business.
Optimize and Get More Leads
It might take some time to fully take advantage of Google My Business as a means to generate more leads, but the payoff is worth it in the long run.
By continuing to monitor Insights and Google Analytics, a business can use a listing to its full potential to capitalize on leads, bring in more customers, and gain more revenue.