Are you using Google My Business (GMB) to help boost your local SEO yet?
If not, you’re missing out.
More than a free, public listing on the world’s largest search engine; your GMB also comes packed with valuable customer data located within your dashboard.
In the Insights tab you can see in detail how your customers interact with your listing.
This data includes:
- Queries used to find your business
- How customers search for your business
- Where customers view your business on Google
- How customers interact with your business
- Where customers request directions to your business from
- When and how often customers call your business
- How often your photos were viewed
- How many photos you have compared to your competition
Google’s official definition of Insights is that it “focuses on how customers find your listing on Search and Maps, and what they do after it”.
Through accessing the Insights section of your GMB dashboard, you can filter the results by the previous week, the previous month, or the previous quarter.
From there you’ll have customer-driven data that you can use to optimise your marketing going forward, helping you to reduce wasted spend, increase traffic, and drive sales.
If you’re ready to start making the most of your Insights, here’s how to break it all down…
Queries used to find your business
The first data displayed is a list of the search queries used to trigger your GMB listing.
These results are ordered by search volume, with the most popular search term at the top.
Using this information you can see what search terms are returning your GMB and modify your marketing strategies as a result.
For example, you can create content around your most popular search terms to provide value for those customers and help develop a connection with them.
Alternately, you can use these terms as part of a paid advertising approach. Doing so may allow you to appear as a local result in the form of your GMB listing. As well as at the top of Google as a paid ad listing.
The greater your exposure on the first page of Google, the better chance you have to generate leads and convert sales.
How customers search for your business
The next data point you’ll see is a breakdown of how customers have searched for your business on Google.
This is broken down into the 3 possible ways for their search queries to trigger your GMB listing.
- Direct: Customers who find your listing searching for your business name or address.
- Discovery: Customers who find your listing searching for a category, product, or service.
- Branded: Customers who find your listing searching for a brand related to your business.
These figures represent impressions – meaning your customers either clicked on your listing or saw it displayed but did not click.
Where customers view your business on Google
Customers can find your business listing in two ways.
- Google Search
- Google Maps
This data shows you the split between Search results and Map results.
High traffic from Google Maps implies that people are searching for your business on their mobile devices. With 78% of local mobile searches resulting in either an in-store or online purchase, a high percentage of Map results is great for business.
In terms of Local SEO, searches are 3x more likely to be made by voice than through traditional text queries. Again, if you notice a high number of Map results you may benefit from optimising your content for voice search to take advantage of this data.
How customers interact with your business
This data point tracks the 3 types of ways customers are able to interact with your GMB listing.
These are broken down by:
- Visits to your website
- Direction requests
- Phone calls
Unlike previous data points, which show total impressions (the number of times people have viewed your listing), these represent actual interactions with your business.
These represent real website traffic, and real leads.
Where customers request directions to your business from
This data point highlights the amount of times and areas, shown on a map and broken down by individual postcode, where customers have requested directions to your business from.
This data is extremely important for local businesses who can see where foot traffic is coming from.
This can be then integrated with complementary marketing channels to reduce spend and boost conversions.
For example, if you notice a lot of direction requests from a certain suburb, you can use this information to filter Facebook Ads or Google Ads and target those ads to take advantage of the existing interest.
When and how often customers call your business
This data displays the total number of phone calls made through your GMB listing to your business over time – which can be filtered between the previous week, previous month, and the previous quarter.
This section of your Insights dashboard can be separated between the days where most calls were made and the times of day where most calls were made.
This is valuable information as you can start posting content or releasing paid ads during the days and times when your customers are most engaged with your business.
How often your photos were viewed
This section of data shows you the number of times your photos were viewed.
Each GMB account allows business owners to upload photos to create engaging and visually appealing listings.
Photos must be in JPG or PNG format and follow all of Google’s guidelines for images.
Businesses with photos receive 42% more requests for directions from consumers, and 35% more click-throughs to their website than GMB listings without photos.
Photo views are measured as either impressions or actually clicked on by an internet user.
In competitive industries, this data point is compared to similar businesses. This gives you insight into whether you are focusing enough attention on the visual side of your GMB listing.
How many photos you have compared to your competition
This data highlights the contrast between the number of photos you have uploaded and the number of photos uploaded by businesses like you.
You will also see a split between photos uploaded by you (owner photos) and photos uploaded by your customers (customer photos).
A GMB listing allows for customers to upload photos directly to your listing to help encourage transparent and authentic representation.
By encouraging your regular clientele to upload photos you’ll create an engaged community and a GMB listing that attracts more customers.
Have you started using your Google My Business Insights yet?
Through accessing your Insights you can gain valuable insight into the way customers are engaging with your GMB listing.
If you’re noticing a trend in searches, locations or interactions you can use this information to optimise and improve the effectiveness of your listing.
Or, if you’re not noticing the results you would like, you’ll need to improve your Local SEO strategy.
This may mean updating your listing, gathering more positive reviews, adding relevant citations and working on your backlink portfolio among other things.
Remember the line quoted by successful business owners and marketers, “if you can’t measure it, you can’t improve it”.
Use your GMB Insights to measure the effectiveness of your listing and keep improving your Local SEO until you reach your traffic, revenue and growth goals.