Hi. I'm Linnae Harris, web designer & photographer
I help photographers make magnetic websites
that attract their ideal peeps
“Just Google it”
Google has become interchangeable with searching for something online for almost everyone who is trying to find a product or service.
Is it any wonder coming out on top of a local Google search is often a company’s #1 marketing goal?
Add in the crazy competitive market of Asheville and the surrounding WNC area and the importance of where you stand on Google rises exponentially.
So how exactly can you optimize your Asheville local Google Business profile?
A huge key, and one which most business owners do not use to its full potential, is the Google Business Profile. While you’ve likely seen and used it before, odds are you may not know just how much it can actually be swayed to your advantage- especially when dealing with the local Asheville market.
If you haven’t already set up your basic Google Business Profile but there is a listing already created, you can easily start by Googling your business and clicking the button/link that asks if you are the owner of the business.
Starting from scratch? No worries! Here is a quick set of instructions to help!
Once the setup is complete, the fun really begins.
Below is a checklist I’ve created to help you optimize your Asheville Google Business Profile.
This one always kills me.
It’s like writing that final term paper and then turning it in without putting your name on it.
Why do all that work if you’re not going to make it easy for people to find you?!
Some things to double (or triple!) check are:
-Don’t get fancy here! It’s in your best interest to keep it exactly as it is everywhere else on your site/marketing. Don’t abbreviate sometimes and other time don’t. Google is trying to figure out who you are and there are lots of similar named businesses so be consistent with your company name!
-Just like your name, make sure you pick exactly how you want to write it and stick to it wherever and whenever you use it. Even something as simple as writing your phone number (828)XXX-XXX vs 828.XXX.XXX or using Drive vs Dr. in some places can get it marked as a red flag on Google.
-Is there anything more frustrating than going to a business that is supposed to be open only to find it closed? Avoid bad feelings (and reviews!) by making sure your hours are always up to date. This is especially important during the holiday season when your hours may differ from the standard.
One thing that drives everyone I know crazy is that weird, monotonous sounding blurb just under your business name.
Turns out there’s a reason it sounds that way! Google self creates each blurb to ensure a continuous voice throughout the search results given.
This is all the more reason you need to make sure your “from the business section” gets your message across!
My advice for optimizing it is to:
From here, it’s on to the choose your categories section.
While pretty simple overall, there are some small tweaks that can help you get to the next level.
Be specific. You’re not just a restaurant. You are an Italian restaurant.
Now you should be able to see the secondary categories so keep going.
You are a family style, Italian restaurant that delivers and takes reservations!
Each additional piece of information you give here adds to Google’s checklist and helps ensure you show up on more searches.
Actually an Italian AND a Mediterranean restaurant but only have the option to pick one?
Unfortunately, the system isn’t perfect and there is no real way to get around this. My best advice is to pick whichever you feel describes you best and then make sure to make it clear you do both in your from the business section.
With Google, the photos on your page serve to both attract clients and to show Google you are an active business.
It’s worth your time to make sure you have some high quality photos in prime spots on your profile.
I usually recommend having a high resolution shot of your business logo as your thumbnail along with a professional looking photo that best displays your company’s image for your cover picture.
Like so many other parts of your web presence, make sure the photos you choose are polished and dynamic and set a good standard. A grainy or dull cover photo will only serve to detract from all your hard work.
If possible, download new photos every week- even if it’s just one!
This helps keep things active for both clients and Google. It can be a quick addition if you already are keeping up to date on social media.
It also helps ensure the quality photos you have chosen are what is being seen by potential clients vs the client added ones. Even some of the most well meaning clients can leave unattractive photos which are best left as part of the masses vs the first photo a client sees.
Think of your Asheville Google Business Profile as another social media platform.
The biggest difference between those who get optimal results from it and those who don’t is simple. Those who have the “set it and forget it” mindset tend to fall flat vs those who do what they can to stay active on it and keep it “alive” reap the results.
Some ways you can do this are by:
This can be as simple as just detailing any new sales, specials or contests you may be having. Don’t make this more stressful than it needs to be!
Using the Q & A section to your advantage
Did you know you can actually ask (and answer!) your own questions? You can also make sure the questions you like the most are on top!
While it can seem scary to let the uncontrolled public have a voice, it can actually be a great tool to let you know what potential clients may be looking for and to let others see how professional and helpful your business is.
Even better- you can slip in a keyword or two in there!
Just make sure you keep it up to date and double check that all the information is accurate.
Set up messaging
Did you know there’s a way you can actually let potential clients message you directly if they need anything while still maintaining your privacy?
This can be HUGE for grabbing a sale if the answer to a simple question is all that may be standing in the way.
All you have to do is select the messaging tab on the dashboard and download the app.
Believe it or not, I have an answer for that too!
Listen, I get that what seems easy to me may not seem all that simple and straightforward to you.
That’s the entire reason I’m here.
It’s my business and goal to give you the necessary help to place your business on top of Google.
Did you made it through all the steps, but were left wondering exactly which SEO keywords make the most sense to help get you ahead in Asheville…
Maybe you know the SEO keywords you need, but have no idea how to put it all together in a way that makes sense…
If you read this and said, “Linnae, ALL of it is way over my head!”…
As an Asheville web designer and SEO strategist, together, we can come up with the exact plan you need to get you the guidance you’re looking for. Just click here to contact me for any Asheville web design and SEO needs.
Making your Asheville Google Profile perform at its optimal level is just beginning. From there we can team up to ensure your Asheville business reaches and keeps its rightful place at the top!