Increase your Local Traffic with Google+ Local

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We put this E-Book together, to help
local business owners connect with people
searching for your business locally. With our
easy-to-learn steps you’ll be able to setup a
Google+ Profile, optimize your Business Page,
and get your business found on local search. Get started today!

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Increase your Local Traffic with Google+ Local

  1. 1. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 1 www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook Increase your local traffic with Google+ local
  2. 2. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 2 Table of contents Introduction - 3 1. What is Google+ Local - 4 2. Checklist for an Optimized Google+ Local Profile - 8 3. Create Your Google Account - 12 4. Setting up your Personal Profile - 15 5. Set up a Business Page - 19 6. Optimizing your Business Page - 27 7. How Standard Marketing can Help - 31
  3. 3. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 3 Introduction Google knows that most of the business in the world is conducted by small, local businesses. That’s why they created Google+ Local, to get small local businesses using and relying on Google to help their business. And they’ve done a pretty good job. Google+ Local helps people find what they’re looking for within their own neighborhood. As well, Google has tied Google+ Local into Google Maps, which people searching locally often use. They’ve also tied Google+ Local into Google+ Circles so people using Google Maps can include search options that display results rated either by top reviewers or by people within their Google+ Circles. This means one thing – you need to be on Google+ and more importantly you need Google+ Local. That’s why we put this E-Book together, to help local business owners connect with people searching for your business locally. With our easy-to-learn steps you’ll be able to setup a Google+ Profile, optimize your Business Page, and get your business found on local search – so let’s get started! “ ” In recent studies Google found that 82% of mobile shoppers search when they’re inside a store to influence their purchase decision” and “28% of mobile searches result in convers ions.” – Search Engine Land
  4. 4. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 4 1. What is Google+ Local
  5. 5. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 5 Google is the largest search engine in the world with over five hundred million searches a day. They wanted a share of the business in the social media industry, and they did that with Google+. Google+ is now the world’s second largest social network with over 500 million users, including 343 million active monthly users. Evolving from Google Places, Google+ made getting involved with your local community a whole lot easier with your very own Local Tab. Clicking the Local tab allows the user to review local businesses, view local businesses that their friends reviewed, or even to discover a new spot for lunch close by. It’s imperative that businesses set up and optimize their Google+ profile so they can attract and interest these potential buyers. What was once known as Google Places has become Google+ Local. If you created a Google Places profile before May 30th, 2012, you will want to revisit your profile to make sure it’s still the best it can be.
  6. 6. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 6 Google Reviews: The reviews written about a business are valuable pieces of information that most searchers depend on to help them make a buying decision. While it’s nice to have the more reviews than your immediate competitors it’s also recommended that you don’t go offering incentives in exchange for reviews. That’s not to say you can’t ask for reviews. We recommend business owners find a personable and friendly approach for asking customers to review your services on Google+.
  7. 7. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 7 Google+ Circles: Circles are easily defined as the groups of people that interact with you through Google+. You can have Circles for Friends, Family, Acquaintances, Following and you can even customize your circles. When someone in one of your circles makes a review or recommendation about a business through Google+, this review becomes visible to you and the people in their circles. So putting time into building your circles with relevant and nearby people can be a great way to get free advertising.
  8. 8. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 8 2. Checklist for an Optimized Google+ Local Profile
  9. 9. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 9 David Mihm, from Moz published the Local Search Ranking Factors Survey for 2013. This pie chart will help you understand what to include in your Google+ Local profile to ensure it can be found in search. August 7th, 2013 - Posted by David Mihm Overall Ranking Factors Place Page Signals (Categories, Keyword in Business Title, Proximity, etc.) External Loc. Signals (IYP/aggregator NAP consistency, Citation Volume, etc.) On-Page Signals (Presence of NAP, Keywords in Titles, Domain authority, etc.) Link Signals (Inbound ancher text, Linking domain authority, Linking domain quatity, etc.) Review Signals (Rreview quantity, Review volicity, Review diversity, etc.) Social Signals (Google+ authority, Facebook likes, Twitter followers, etc.) Behavioral/Mob. Signals (Clickthrough rate, Mobile clicks to call, Check-ins, Offers, etc.) Personalization
  10. 10. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 10 Place Page Signals This refers to the accuracy and level of description of your categories. External Location Signals This refers to your list- ing on the Internet Yel- low Pages if you have One - Name, Address, Phone consistency, and Citation volume. Google loves consistency so re- member that it’s impor- tant to have your Name, Address, Phone number (NAP) consistent wher- ever your business is mentioned online. It also helps to submit your busi- ness to a few directories. We’ll provide some good suggestions later in this Ebook. On-Page Signals Link Signals This refers to the presence of your Name, Address, Phone number. Are they obviously displayed?On-page signals also include on-page search engine optimization tactics, high domain authority, etc. This refers to the quality and quantity of links on other websites that are pointing to your website. Aim for links on websites that are authoritative, relevant to your business, and trustworthy.
  11. 11. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 11 Review Signals This refers to the amount of reviews you receive, whether the reviews are good or bad, and the diversity of platforms where you have reviews e.g. Yelp, Google reviews, Facebook reviews, etc. Social Signals This refers to the level of engagement that your content warrants across all of your social networks. The more people are talking about your content the better. Great content leads to a better signal to Google that your website serves higher rankings. Behavioral and Mobile Signals Personalization This refers to the behavior of your audience while they’re considering your marketing communications. Do you need to add more enticement to increase click-throughs, check- ins, or interest in special offers? This refers to personalizing your Google+ accounts – making sure all your profile fields are filled in. This includes the information on both your personal page and your business page.
  12. 12. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 12 3. Create Your Google Account
  13. 13. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 13 If you don’t have a Gmail or Google account it’s easy to get started with the steps provided below. Simply go to http://www.gmail.com/ and click Create an Account in the upper right hand corner. Once you click it you’ll be prompted to choose your username and provide personal information. Once you’ve completed entering your information and choosing your username and password you’ll need to verify your account with a verification number. Google will either send a text message or an automated phone call to relay the verification code.
  14. 14. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 14 Next you’ll be allowed to upload a picture and start building your account. Click on View profile and begin adding friends, personal information, pictures, links and anything else that you feel best portrays your personality. They will provide you with a 6 digit verification code. Once you receive the code, enter it to validate that you are not a bot.
  15. 15. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 15 4. Setting up your Personal Profile
  16. 16. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 16 After you set up your Gmail account, you will be prompted to connect with friends. Add photo and click upgrade, it will then ask you to add people you know. In the third phase it will ask you for some personal information and once you’ve filled it out click Finish.
  17. 17. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 17 Once you’ve finished you’ll be directed to your Dashboard where you can click on the downward arrow to the right of your avatar in the top right hand corner and View Profile. Click on About and start editing the personal information and remember that it’s better to fill out more than less. Start with filling out information on Story, Education, Work, Basic Information, Links, Contact Information and start adding People to your circles. Adding people to your circles is a great way to expand your network and visibility – try to add people that are relevant to your industry or people that you feel fit into your target market.
  18. 18. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 18 A good way to get started with adding people is to join a community – whether it be a community based around your current city or a community based around your industry, it’s a great way to connect and build relationships. Go to the top left hand corner and click on the G+ and then click on Communities to search for the Community that best matches your interests. Once you have chosen a community to join you will need to turn notifications on or off – in this case I’ve turned them off so I don’t receive an abundance of notifications. On the left hand column you will see a box that contains pictures of all the members. You can click on See All and once you can see all the members hover your cursor over the avatars and click on Follow. You will then be able to choose what circle you want to add the person to.
  19. 19. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 19 5. Set up a Business Page
  20. 20. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 20 Before you jump into it, you may want to do a search for your business to ensure that your business doesn’t already have a page that a user created. Once you confirm there is no existing page, you can click on the Home Icon in the top left hand corner and click on Pages. Information you need: Make sure everything is consistent. Google likes everything exactly the same (copy/paste). It’s good to also represent your business in the exact same way that it appears offline. Use the exact same street address formatted in exactly the same way as you have it displayed on your website, either in the footer section of every page, or perhaps just on the Contact Us page. Business Name Business Address Local Business Phone Number Website URL Hours of Operation Areas Served.
  21. 21. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 21 Once there, select Create a New Page and it will ask you what kind of page you want to set up. I selected Local Business or Place. You will have to enter the business’ phone number, location and category before continuing. Once you have your page, we recommend uploading a nice profile picture and backdrop picture that captures the brand essence – if your business caters to the young and affluent – portray that sort of lifestyle including people from the specified demographic. Once you’ve made some initial design decisions on your business page click on the About tab again at the top of the page and select Edit business Information. Here you can edit your address, phone number, website, email address, hours of operation, and business description. Write a compelling description in 200 characters with 2 or 3 key phrases – explaining what you do, how you can help people and why you’re in business. Make sure everything is filled out, Google will rank you better if you provide a stronger user experience (photos, videos, promotions)
  22. 22. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 22 At the top of the screen you will see a progress bar that represents the completeness of your profile – in order to achieve 100% you need to request a PIN to verify your business’ location. Before you request you PIN double check that the address on your website and the address in Google+ Profile is an exact match. Once you request your PIN, you will normally have to wait a couple of weeks to get your Post card in the mail - don’t be surprised if it takes up to 4 weeks. The post card will look something like this:
  23. 23. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 23 Once you have received your PIN in the mail, you will have to enter it to complete your profile by clicking Edit Business Information on your About Page. Once you see this page shown on the left, click Enter Pin and your business location will be verified by Google.
  24. 24. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 24 Go back to the About page and scroll down to Links and Contact Info and you’ll see a Link Website option beside your website’s URL. You can either send the information to your webmaster or you can put the code in your website directly. You may have to seek out technical help for placing your website verification code in your website. To verify email you simply click verify beside your email address on your profile, check your email and click verify in the email Google sent you. Verifying your Website and email
  25. 25. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 25 Tips Keep in mind that this needs to be a physical address, not a P.O. Box. One listing per physical business location – even if you operate in a larger service area. Don’t worry - you can designate your service areas separately. Do you have multiple specialties in the same office? Create a listing for your offices and a separate listing for each practitioner. According to Google’s standards this should not appear manipulative. Remember, this is about trust and consistency across many different information sources, if your address is somewhat rural or miles away from a city’s “epicenter” zip code you might be tempted to list just the city name. We recommend against it. Multiple business locations? Create a listing for each one. Provide a phone number that connects to your individual business location as directly as possible, and provide one website that represents your individual business location. Your phone number SHOULD be a local number for maximum impact. Also know that you should not select the “verify listing by phone” option if you use an automated phone system. Google’s system can only provide your verification PIN to a live person or voice mail.
  26. 26. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 26 Citations – Make sure all mentions of your website are consistent with current and correct information on URL, address, phone number, spelling, etc. Accruing citations is a great way to stay ahead of your competitors. It’s great for SEO and they send signals to search engines – so the higher the quality of these citations the better. Especially for the smaller markets, or less competitive industries, a handful of high quality citations may be all a business needs to appear like the best among their competitors. Here is a list of websites that will help you build some citations: • Foursquare.com • GetFave.com • Google.com/business/placesforbusiness • Local.yahoo.com • Local.com • WhitePages.com • YellowPages.com • Yelp.com • YellowBot.com • Citysearch.com • Dexknows.com • Hotfrog.com Thanks to Timothy Carter for sharing this.
  27. 27. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 27 6. Optimizing your Business Page
  28. 28. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 28 One of the changes that Google+ Local brings that Places didn’t is that your Local page will be indexed and will actually show up in Google’s search result pages. This means that including keywords in your profile will have significant SEO benefits for increasing your business’ visibility. We will suggest where to place keywords in the Tips section below. Make sure you complete your profile. Nobody likes going to a business page and seeing no activity for a year, little to any information provided, no reviews, no pictures, etc. The more consistent you are with sharing information and media, the more the visitor will understand about your business and the quicker they’ll realize if your business is a good fit for them. Build your Circles with former, prospective and current clients. This can actually help to generate some reviews and +1’s for your business because once you add them they will be notified and become reminded of your excellent service.
  29. 29. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 29 I’m sure you’ve heard “Content is King.” Post engaging and relative content so that your Circles can appreciate your posts as this will encourage more followers. Great visuals go a long way with Google+ and are more likely to be shared compared to a plain text post. Helpful Optimization Tips: Profile name: ensure your name is consistent with your website, blog and other social profiles. It’s suggested that you use the same background image as on your other social profiles to create a branded feel but Google+’ background is much larger so feel free to be creative. Story: Make sure your Story is public and remember when you share something or post the audience can be individually selected. Tagline: Use less than 10 words and try to use a suggested keyword. Introduction: Make sure it’s less than 110 characters so it will fit in Google’s Search. Bragging Rights: Share recent successes like home, property, or condo sales and try to mention your blog or website. Profile Pic try to use a 250px by 250px professional headshot. Tip: Your photos will show up in Search Results so, keep it safe for work and professional.
  30. 30. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 30 Contact Info: List your email and phone number as well as your Postal Code for location. People: Enable “show people who have added you to circles” Occupation: Sum up your career in a sentence or two. Skills: Note key work skills. Tip: Use less than 5 keyworded skills to increase chances of being found through search. Employment: Showcase your employment highlights in 2 or 3 sentences for each job. Other Profiles: Link to all of your social accounts, blogs, and websites. Tip: Use keyworded anchor text to describe your links. Contributor to: make sure to link to your blog’s “About Me” page to authenticate your Google. Authorship: Google Authorship will ensure your picture is displayed in Search Results beside the description of your blog post or website. Try to match your Google+ name with your Blog and posts – you can do this by adding By: yourname or Author: yourname to your blog posts.
  31. 31. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 31 7. How Standard Marketing can Help
  32. 32. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 32 The above process can take as little as an hour but usually requires longer if you are looking for an optimized and well established profile. This could become extremely beneficial to your business and we can help you build your personal and business profiles; verify your website, email, business location, accrue citations, reviews and much more. We could help you set up and maintain your very own Google Authorship which allows your picture to be displayed beside your website in Google’s search result pages. This adds an incredible amount of leverage over your competitors as it adds a sense of familiarity and personification to your website. For additional information how Google+ can help your business visit our website: www.standardmarketing.ca
  33. 33. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 33 Discover the missed opportunity with a fully optimized and well established Google+ Local account. There are hundreds of local searches happening in your very own neighborhood, everyday! Don’t let your competitors get all the attention – remember what we said about how a few high quality citations can do for your visibility. We specialize in Search Engine Optimization but we are also Social Media experts, especially when it comes to building optimized Google+ accounts including Google+ Local. An optimized and well established Google+ account is vital to your SEO as Google+ has a large impact on how Google ranks you in its search results and how searchers find you. Let’s talk about how Google+ Local can help your business grow. 604 722-9375604 722-9375 Optimize Your Google Local info@standardmarketing.cainfo@standardmarketing.ca
  34. 34. www.standardmarketing.ca Standard Marketing - ebook - Increase your local traffic with Google+ local Page 34 By Anthony Baisi Anthony Baisi manages social media & customer relations at Standard Marketing. He’s also responsible for developing clients’ content strategy and carrying out their Search Engine Optimization. He strategizes each client’s content to address the needs of their target audience while establishing a professional and consistent persona for the brand. He’s an important part of our marketing strategy team. Written by Anthony Baisi Follow me on Twitter @anthonybaisi
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