“Convenience and connection.”
That’s what all purchase decisions come down to according to a new report by Walker Sands.
“... the rapid influx of technology in the retail experience has driven consumers of all ages to expect a connected, convenient experience that seamlessly aligns with their everyday lives.”
When people are shopping online, they expect a convenience that goes beyond the in-store experience. However, the connection with brands is one of the (very!) few drivers of loyalty in the purchase decision. So, how can you create an experience that meets shoppers’ expectations for both convenience and connection?
By perfecting your Google My Business Profile.
What is Google My Business?
Google My Business is a free internet-based service that helps businesses connect with the people that are searching for them online. Since Google launched the service five years ago, the company has helped more than 150 million local businesses connect with people that are looking for them online. So, if you don’t have a My Business Profile yet, add that to the top of your to-do list.
Convenience and connection
When today’s consumers are searching for businesses, they’re on the hunt for more than just one thing. First of all, they’re searching for something specific like “late night restaurants near Washington Square Park” or “rooftop happy hour with great cocktails.” Second of all, they’re looking to get more things done, such as booking a table or asking what products a store offers. In other words, they’re hunting convenience and connection.
With a My Business Profile, people who are searching for your business or businesses like yours on Google Maps will be able to find you and you’ll be able to connect with them and give them all the convenience they crave.
So, let's take a look at how your can perfect you My Business Profile and offer customers convenience and connection through Google Maps.
#1. Share helpful information
With a Business Profile, you can easily share helpful information, like your address, phone number, website, opening hours, and more, so customers always have the information they need at their fingertips. Moreover, customers can make a reservation or order food through your Business Profile. That’s convenient!
Plus, businesses that have added all of these core information will have their logo displayed at the top right corner of their profile. So, meeting customers’ demand for convenience also offers you an additional branding opportunity.
2. Attract people with welcome offers
“I hate a good deal.”
...said no one ever.
Actually, more than half of online customers are looking for an offer or discount. Thanks to a new My Business feature, businesses can now reward customers who follow their business on Google with welcome offers. This means you can offer customers something they want, draw them to your shop, and connect with them at the same time. That’s what I call a win-win(-win).
With a Business Profile, you don’t even have to worry about how to keep customers coming back once they’ve used their welcome offer. By posting daily specials and seasonal updates on your Profile, you give customers a reason to come back. And the best thing is, everyone who search for your business can see your updates, so they reach far beyond your followers.
#3. Capture your identity
Consumers are craving connection with brands who share their viewpoints, so why not let your personality shine through? Show people you who you are with profile cover photos on your Profile.
You can also turn snapshots into sales by adding photos of your products or favorite menu items to your Profile. The photos you upload to you Business Profile will appear instantly and prominently on a dynamic module and soon businesses will also be able to add photo captions, so you can tell the story behind your snapshots.
#4. Engage online and build customer loyalty
Reviews are often one-way communication from shoppers to businesses, which makes no sense as reviews offer businesses an excellent opportunity of connecting with customers.
With a Business Profile you can engage online and build customer loyalty by starting a conversation with customers. Respond directly to their reviews and messages and earn their loyalty. This also allows you to gain important insights about your business and its strengths and weaknesses.
#5. Find businesses quicker with short names and URLs
With Google My Business, business owners can claim a short name and URL for their business. With this URL, owners can easily refer customers back to their Business Profile, where they can get the latest updates, make a reservation, or write a review.
In the coming months, people will also be able to search short names in Maps, so finding the right shop, store, or restaurant becomes even easier for them.
Google is constantly developing and improving My Business and later this summer the company will launch more new features, such as a website where businesses can download and pre-order offline assets and a “Local Highlight” category, where the top five percent of businesses in a particular category will be highlighted. To help people easily find and engage with these businesses, Google will create digital and physical badges of honor.
So, stay tuned for more details about new features and check out the blogs below to learn more about Google Maps Marketing and how to improve your Google Maps Ranking.