Webinar Transcript - 2023 Guide to Google Maps – Getting Ranked on the Map
Speaker: Harry Casimir
All right, I know you guys are very busy and I appreciate you turning in and we about to take off. Well, thank you, everyone, for joining us this afternoon on the guide to Google Maps 2023. We will dive into how you can get your marine business on Google Maps and beyond. We have a lot to unpack, so we’re just going to get right into it.
What we’re going to cover today are the latest on Google Maps and Google Map listing updates, and some of the issues that may be preventing you at the moment from getting ranked on Google Maps. And the models that we know that work for getting you listed on the TweetPak, which we’re going to go over in detail. And some of the best tools that are in the market that you can get your hands on to help systemize and automate part of the flow for you to make sure the heavy lift is out of your hands. We’re going to go over a lot of that.
So few things while you’re here. I know all of you are super busy, have a ton of things to do, but somehow you chip in that time this afternoon to join me in this webinar. And I would love to see you take and get the best out of it. And to do that, there are a few things that I’m asking you to do as a favor.
Turn off the phone because I know it’s very trying to get trying. And social media, well, usually your phone is in social media. Social media is inside your phone. So I guess if you turn off the phone for a moment, concentrate on this time, take some notes.
There will be plenty of Nuggets for you to go home with, but definitely, I want you to pay attention to some of the things that we’re going to go over. Questions. There will be questions as we go along. There are questions that I will do everything that I can to answer as we proceed, and there will be questions that I will answer at the end if I don’t have a chance to answer them as we go.
So here we go. We’re going to get started. But before we dive into the content itself, just a little bit about myself. I’ve been in the digital marketing space for over 15 years, and I am a US veteran, Navy vet.
I am the owner of Bored Marketing Pools, a subdivision of Artilis, which is a digital marketing agency specialized on basically everything we’re going to go over in a second. So as a company, we are part of those many associations and other peer groups in the marine space. And you can see here the MRA, most of the local organizations we are part of, we support them. And I’m also a subcommittee member of the Marine Marketers of America.
I am also the host of the podcast, the Marine Marketing Podcast. You can listen to that podcast anywhere is a syndication with podcasts, whether it’s Google, Google Podcasts, Apple Podcasts, and so forth. We publish articles and trade only the boarding industry and many other related platforms for the marine industry. And I have written two books on marketing for marine businesses.
One of them is the ultimate guide for boat dealer marketing, and the other one is marine marketing. So this one is specific to boat dealers, and the other one is for marine in general. My background, my education background, I have a bachelor’s degree in computer information systems from Florida and Gulf Coast University down the street. And my MBA is a concentration on project management and business processes from Norwich University, which is one of the oldest military schools in the United States and Vermont.
So what do we do? So boat marketing post is a subdivision of Atilus, as I mentioned. We are a full in-house digital marketing agency specializing exclusively in the marine industry space. So we have boat dealers, boat clubs, boat rentals, boat manufacturers.
So if you’re in the marine space, whatever service that you offer and product you are selling, there might be a way we can help you to Excel. And these are the types of services that we offer. In today’s webinar, we are talking about how to get ranked on Google Maps. The big question is, how do you get in Google?
Does it really matter? Well, Google Maps, we were going to unpack why it is so important to your marine business and how to get there. Take a look at this number. According to Google, 44% of the users that search for your product or services will use one of the companies that they find in the map.
That’s a very, very big number. Think about every time you search something on Google at the moment, the first thing that shows up is the every four, almost five human beings out of 10 will click on your results, edit their results. Today, it’s so to be ranked on Google. We’re going to go over the details of how to get ranked and why you need that.
As we go along on this process, as I said, feel free to ask questions, and I will do my best to answer these questions. But some of the stuff that we’re going to go over, there will be detailed, very specific example of the result that you can see from Google Maps. So here’s a good example of a customer dashboard within Google Maps itself and within the Google Business profile, which we’re going to go into detail. But you’re looking at these numbers here, what you see is a local boat dealership, we’re able to have about 27,000, almost 28,000 people search and view their product and services.
Now, not every one of those people actually learn on their website because that’s not how it really works. But what you can see here of that, that company listing is showing about 15,000 times. And of that 15,000 times, 12,000, almost 13,000 of it were directly on the map. And you can see these people did not even scroll down on the Search Result page.
They just clicked the button right in there. This is for one month, did get totally 123 calls just from the Google Map itself. This is why it’s so critical as a business and business owner, digital marketing director, Marketing Manager to ensure your business, product, or services that you are offering are listed on Google Maps. So how do you go about getting all this there?
Yeah. So I want to make a point in terms of Google Maps, as I just showed you, can drive a lot of traffic to your business. However you want to quantify that traffic, it’s really every business goals is a little bit different. Some people want to have more leads coming in so they can convert them to sales, eventually convert them into their true profits.
In some businesses, they just need more eyeball to see them and enhance their brand awareness. But one thing that we know, you cannot just rely on just advertising, specifically just pay-per-click to continue to drive traffic. Google Maps is one of the easiest way to do that. If we go back here very quick, I’m sorry, I think the slide wasn’t moving, but the fully focused I mentioned earlier is what I was looking at from the map, as well as the calls from Google what this looks like.
We’re looking at the 27.6 views for the month. From that, they were listed on 12,000, almost 13,000 results on the maps. From that, 800, 30 people actually click on the website link, visit their website, and 142 of them ask for direction, and you see 123 made a phone call to the business.
Now, again, ultimately, as I just showed you, you can get a lot of calls from Google Maps, and Google Maps is live and it’s become more dominance and more importance, and you will see why that is. I want to go over a few big changes that happened recently in the last year or so in terms of what are some of these changes and what do they mean for you. Google Maps listing used to be seven results. You can see seven different businesses or product within the maps.
They reduced that now to three. So you have a smaller window of opportunity for your business to show up there and to be seen. And we’re going to go over how to make sure that your business is in the top three of those businesses that get listed. And then we talk about Google is serving ads now.
As you saw earlier, we’re going to go over that in a second again, is nowadays, and I’ll show ads on every page you go when you come to the maps. Google also looked at some of the key things that really affecting a lot of businesses. This is very, very important, and what we’re talking about here today are things that we have tried and we know that work. That doesn’t mean there aren’t other things that work, but we’re looking at things that we’re not going to get punished for when we apply them to your business, and Google would appreciate that you have those information, really.
Google looked at your primary business listing, meaning the address for the business. There are many, many ways people try to fool Google in terms of creating fake addresses in different cities that they are not even operating so they can get rank for that city for the services and product. Well, there is a misconception on that. You might get away with it for a week, two weeks, possibly even months, but that is not a good strategy to run your business on.
Because Google is extremely powerful, they still have a command of seven, it depends who you ask, seven to 80 % of the search engine markets in the United States itself and Canada. So getting banned from Google or get your company suspended or deactivated by any means, it can be a very daunting task for you. So my suggestion would be making sure the address that is you listed and where you’re working is something that’s legit and Google approved. Another thing Google looked at is different addresses.
So a UPS mailbox, the different mailboxes are the PO Box and virtual offices, Google algorithms become extremely smart, and they even have you and bin now really checked some of those information. You want to make sure you stay out of their crosshair. The meaning is that those information, the type of address you have can make a big difference. And if it doesn’t benefit you, make sure you clean that up.
And as you guys know, COVID changed a lot of things. Before COVID, people were working from home, but COVID drives a lot of people to go back home. But that’s also bringing a lot of businesses to change their addresses to homes. That doesn’t really mean that you cannot get listed to a specific geographic location.
It’s just a little bit harder than it used to be, and Google really cracking on that because a lot of people, if I live in city B, but my business is in city A, well, now I can use my city B as my potential business address to get ranking for the address, even though I’m not technically doing business there, per se, depending on what type of business you are functioning on. There’s a lot of complexity there. You want to make sure you don’t get banned for this. And most importantly, at the end of the day, you just need a real physical address.
If you are functioning as a work in order, there are many, many businesses in the marine industry, you most likely need a physical address. If you’re a boat dealer, well, unless you’re running a virtual boat dealer show, well, there’s a good chance you need an address, a boat rental, a boat club, or even a boat manufacturer. Whatever you do, there’s a good chance you need an address and you can get that and make sure you have that in place as well. What are we looking at in terms of when someone search for a specific dealership?
And what does that mean to you? And how do you show up on Google? So if you look at this address here in terms of where you get ranked and how Google receives you, coming back here, so when someone search based on this information and what they are looking for is really based on the proximity where the user is at and what information they are looking to retrieve. And Google algorithm is getting extremely smart in terms of how they perceive that information.
And that I mentioned to you earlier in terms of where Google shows some of the ads now in the maps, as you can see, they only show three-to-many times the same result. And for this particular example, a boat club near me, as you can see, you have this one boat club franchise that take the first space as ads, and then the second space as their ranking, and even the third one is them. So that one company, although the clubs may own by different owners in the same space, but if you think about it, these guys, they’re doing something right and they take two spaces within the map. Google is well aware of that, but Google reward those guys based on how they present the information, which we’re going to go into detail with.
So how does Google go about working that data? They don’t have the most recent map on this? A most recent chart, but the most recent data is out? So Google has been removing tricked businesses’ profile for the longest that we know.
When I first started in this industry, anybody could get a rank basically tomorrow. You just wake up, find an address you pay almost nothing for, and get ranking. It’s a little bit trickier and harder because as Google continue to crack. And that cracking really start from 2015, and now it continues.
In the last few years, Google removed over five million fake business addresses and profiles from Google system as well alone. So if you think about it, we’re talking about Google here. Obviously, there are other search engines and other places that you need to be ranked for. But if Google is doing that, there’s a good chance that other guys are doing it, so which means it’s important to have your profile and a good standing with all the different search engine.
Now, we move on what the result looks like on the search. We talked about the tweaks earlier. And so when you heard someone talk about the tweaks on the search result page, they’re talking about the ads, the Google Maps, and the SEO itself, the organic SEO listing. When you look at this here, you have the Google ads that’s basically someone pay when you click on this link here.
And then those are the ones that get optimized right in the middle. Those are the ones that get optimized to be ranked on the maps. And again, we’re going to go over how can you get ranked on the map. And then there is the organic SEO itself, which is very critical in terms of where you get placement if you are not in the map or if you’re on the map, you need to be there as well.
And those are two different elements, and each one of them has to be treated differently to get where you need to be. So where can you get hurt? And what are the things that get your business either suspended or really get on the wrong side of Google. So we’re going to go over them one by one.
So the first thing is basically you can’t go without having an actual office, a physical office for the city that you are targeting. For example, if you are targeting downtown Fort Lauderdale for your both way to business, then you should have an office, physical office there, and you cannot just decide to try to target people in Pompano Beach or Delray Beach, for example. And those are cities that really anywhere from you’re looking at least 30 miles away from each other. So it’s very hard for Google to justify that.
How can you be in Fort Lauderdale and try to get rank for Delray Beach terms? Because there are other businesses that actually there physically, so they give those ranking. And you will see what we talk about in terms of when we go over proximity and relevancy for the different content and how Google show that. The other piece on this is consistency in your NAP.
Nap stands for, name, address, and phone. Those are the three key things, and there are plenty of other information that you need to get corrected for your profile online. But the three key elements that you want to make sure they are consistent across the board are name, address, phone number. That is very, very critical to have that in place.
The third part is using fake location. Again, that’s what we just talked about in terms of using a location that you’re not really functioning on. Now, Google’s system is intelligent enough to know if you live, for example, in a city that has two other cities right in the middle. So there’s a good chance that you are serving the city as well.
So it’s not like you can’t get ranked for a city that you live close by, but it’s very important. But in case if you look at Fort Myers, Southwest Florida, for example, Fort Myers and Naples are the two biggest city and town. Capco is big as well, but we’re looking at Fort Myers in Naples. Between those two cities, you find Bonita and the Stairwell.
Those two tiny little cities, they’re not that big. So if your business is located in Bonita, for example, Google’s well or whether there’s a good chance you will serve both market. So if you want to rank for your services in Fort Myers and Naples while your true location is in Bonita, there are ways you can do that, and you do not have to actually use Fick address for that. And then the other thing is not enough reviews.
So it’s not a secret now that reviews are extremely important for how you rank on Google Maps. Now, how many of us that actually go out of our way to capture those reviews? That’s a completely different story, and we’re going to go over that. We talk about all of those different things that can get you out of the Google Map.
We talk about what the result look like, what you need to do. But what we’re going to go over now is what it looks like to what’s the proven formula that you need. We go over the first thing you want to do is your Google profile. If you have not done so yet, and actually, this is a good time I would like to poll all of you guys to actually see where you are.
So if you don’t mind, can you please take a look at the poll that’s just showing and tell me if you have or have not claimed your business profile yet, and if so, how often do you get your business profile updated? So take a look at the poll and I would love to get your answer as I’m going through this. And as I said, if you have questions, just make sure you push them over to us here on the question as well. If the questions I don’t answer now, I will be going over.
I see some of you are not sure that you have selected and some of you are 100%, and some of you are monthly and some of you are never. Wow, very interesting. I would say based on the answer here, but 40% of you guys have claimed your Google business profile and the other 40 is not sure, and 20% are no. And the not sure, it’s one of those things because oftentimes someone at your company might have claimed this, it’s under somebody’s other information, their email address that you may not aware of.
But truly, it’s split between never and monthly and not applicable. Not applicable means that you don’t really know if it even exists or you don’t even have the profile. What the formula looks like is not a mystery. It’s not rocket science to get ranked on Google.
It just take a little bit work from your end and in your team. And if you don’t know how to do that, highly, highly recommended you find someone that can help you get ranked on Google. The first thing you want to do is claim your Google business profile. This is very, very important and there is no way around it.
It’s very straightforward, and we’re going to quickly go over what that looks like. The second thing you want to do is get reviews. There are a lot of clients, customers that come to your business all the time. You need to convince them to get you reviews.
Again, reviews is not something that only if you need. If you are in the marine industry, there is a good chance you have customer that you serve. And if you are serving customers, they will be happy or not happy. And if they are happy, you better do everything you can to get those reviews.
And we’re going to talk about how to get those reviews from these customers. But most importantly, having a good business profile on Google is good. Having a good business profile on Microsoft Bank Places, having a good business profile on Apple that’s coming up with their own directory now and many, many other one are extremely important. But it’s very similar to getting everything else outside the house, preparing, getting ready.
And if your house is not in order and making sure things are really tidied up, it’s not a waste of time, but it would be nice for your house to be in shape before you try to tell people or to tell the world that, Hey, come over, come over. So this is what OnPage ICU is really about, making sure you take care of the things that are very important on your website, on page CEO, so that when someone finds your business profile on Google, on Bing, or anywhere they find it, whether it’s even social media, when they get to your website, there is nothing stopping them from getting the information that you would like them to have.
So that is why on page SEO is so important. And you will heard this phrase a little bit different from other people. Some people call it technical SEO, some call it on-page SEO, and there are other name for it. But for the purpose of our presentation today, we are talking about on-page SEOs and making sure the basic engines that drive everything is intact, meaning your website and the speed and everything are taken care of.
So what are we looking at and what are the things that you need to ensure to have those business profile in place? The first thing is it helps you build the brand authority that you need. So it’s very, very important to make sure the information that you provide to the search engines is accurate and also get updated very importantly. So this is also give Google a choice that you are maintaining the brand authority and making sure the information there is get updated.
And from there, you’re looking at what are some of the most important information that you need to update within Google. The way Google does this at the moment is to verify whether your business is an existence and you are who you say you are. You actually provide the service and product that you claim to be providing. They do have a lot of methods of verification at the moment.
Some of the highest to low, as you can see here, one of the highest verification right now is the double verification. And then there is the video verification where you actually shoot a live video with a Google rep that’s on the phone with you just to tell them where you’re at. And then you can actually show them maybe a sign, a logo of the business, the office where the business is operating. And one of them is postcard, which is very, very the most common one right now that people use.
Google is slowly starting to get away from that, pushing more of the video verification, email and phones, also the low RS one, but they’re not trustworthy because anybody can fake those. The other trust signal that you look at is the number of reviews. Reviews is extremely important as we talk about those, and also the backend, the routine, and how well you maintain your Google business profile. So Google business profile, having that profile, claiming it is one thing.
Maintaining it and routinely keeping it up to date with information is even more critical. So that is why it’s important to engage and making sure images, updates, holiday hours, making sure the categories are properly labeled, but also posting information within your Google business profile. That’s a very good trust signal. For example, especially if you live in the Southeast region of the United States or the West Coast, season is about to start, depend where you are, but season never really ends in Florida.
So you want to make sure those events that you are about to attend. So Florida, Fort La La Boat Show is coming up, Miami Boat Show is coming up, West Palm is coming up, and there’s many, many other one, and the West Coast Seattle Boat Show is coming up. All of the different boat shows a good opportunity for you to post those events not just only on your website, which is very, very important, but also you can post those on your Google Business Profile as well. So that’s very, very important to do.
And also making sure you review your business profile at least once a month or once every three months or so to make sure you get all the different informations are in place. So not only updating, keeping fresh information going, but also making sure that information is up to date. We talk about all those different trust signal, but there are also local trust signal that I will share with you here. This is more of a bonus tips on how you can really get Google to see that you are truly a Local Champion and you are where you say you are and you do what you do, what you say you do.
Here’s how we look at that. Local sponsorship, believe it or not, local sponsorship is very important. As a business, one way you can do that is making sure when you sponsor anything locally, whether it’s the baseball team, soccer team, us here, I love soccer and I coach every now and then, I sponsor the team, the local team for both my son and sometimes my kids don’t have even playing in the team and the local league. I still sponsor whatever the club is at the moment because it is very, very important.
And making sure that you have a link back to your website that mentioned your business team or product and basically a service to the community. That’s very, very critical to do and very important for you. The other thing is, depending what you do, but host a local community event, if you are a boat dealer, rental, actually, almost any businesses can actually do this, all you have to do is create this event around something based on the season or a specific event. Good example, you guys know if you were in Florida, there’s a good chance the last big boat show in Florida is about maybe in March, right?
And the earliest one, big one, is in September. So there’s a big time gap where a lot of people are not doing much. And even in August, when parents start going back to school, which means everybody’s finished with vacation, now getting back to work. But there isn’t really a lot of big events going on.
There is a few reasons for that, obviously. But one thing you could do is what we call open house. I find that open house is extremely useful. You let the community know.
This is something you can advertise on the local news, local pages, and as an a way to get on the news as well to provide that. The other thing you can do on your website itself is create a resource page on your website. That you can provide all the different restaurants or different services that complement what you do. Maybe you’re a mariner.
Well, there are boat dealers that if you don’t sell boat, there’s a good chance there are boat dealers, there are boat rental around. If you’re a boat dealer, there’s a good chance you don’t do boat rental, you don’t do boat club. And there are people that what they are looking for. And you can provide those information, even restaurant and waterways where you are.
So you can create those resources on your page to show your community trust. The other thing that you can also do is sponsoring a scholarship for really anything, especially if there is a university college around where you are. What that does is basically give your business a boost inside the community. Good example, you can actually create a lot of content creating a scholarship.
Once you can announce that you’re about to create a scholarship at university or college X, Y, and Z, and that information, because most universities have the EDU as their name, that’s a good way to get good background back to your website that create an effect within the community that you are in. But another piece here that’s often overlooked is the interview with local celebrity. There are a lot of people that would be more than happy to come to your business, interview you, know how things are going locally in the industry. Invite them, bring them in-house and do this interview with them.
In that one interview, you can create a blog post around it. You can even create a PR piece just for that news and then syndicate that to different news channel and different news outlet, especially the online one. What that does is creating the effect of different linkage from different highly high authority website that link back to your website. That also help you from a local SEO perspective.
So we talked about this. I thought this was a bonus, but what I’m really excited to go into now is how to plan and optimize your business profile listing. So again, as I mentioned to you, I’m going to share with you the three things that you need to do to make sure your business profile, product, and services is really high up on Google Maps and making sure they get linked back to your website, hopefully bring a bit more business for you. So the first thing you want to do is if you have not done so yet, claim your business profile on Google itself.
It’s very easy, actually. It’s much easier than it sound. All you have to do is search for your business name right now on Google after this conversation. If you totally claim, then you will see this information show up.
But if no one claims your business yet, whether product or services, you would see at the bottom right where it says claim this business, and then you can claim this business now. Google would go over step by step with you, as I mentioned to you earlier, the way Google goes about verifying you are who you say you are, they will go through that process with you to ensure that you don’t just take someone’s business. Actually, their information will have to be there, right? So when you optimize your business on Google, make sure there’s basic information out there and there are things and do’s and don’ts.
One of the first thing that I have seen some people make mistake by adding keywords to their business name. You do not want to do that. And the business name you add here is the business name you want your business to be known as. So, for example, if you have ABC Boat, LLC, and then if that’s the name you want to use, then you should want to use ABC, LLC, and Google.
But if you want to use ABC Boat instead of remove the LLC, that’s fine. You just need to make sure you use that ABC Bot across the board no matter where you are. When you go to Microsoft Bank, when you go to Apple Directory, when you go to any other aggregators that we’re going to show you, you need to make sure your business name is consistent across the board. Second is the address.
Making sure that obviously the URL for the address is important. Select the business category that you are in. I’m well aware that some businesses do have multiple units. So in Marina, for a good example, could have a boat rental, they could have a boat sales.
What do you want to be known for? So use that. You select the primary business category that you want to be listed for because Google is not going to list you for everything, but they will consider and look at the different categories. So if you are in Marina and you have boat sales and boat rental, if someone is searching for boat rental within the area that you are in and there aren’t that many people that are that well ranked, you can get there.
But also keep in mind those are individual business units. Google might want additional information for those business units, and it might be advantageous for you to ensure you have this specific information so that you can get the link for each of these categories. Make sure you use the local address for your business where you are. And obviously, keep your business profile up to date all the time.
So whether it’s the pictures of the team, the owners, different pictures of activities within your company. And for those of you guys that have customers coming on site, you might even ask permission to take the pictures if they’re okay and ask them if you can publish that. So do have permission. And then when they provide information, such as the hours and holidays that you are operating on.
And there’s a lot of stuff you can do with your Google Business Profile to ensure that people see it all the time. Here’s what one would look like, very similar to what we just talked about, is again, put the basic information and the name, the service you offer, the address, what area that you serve. This is very, very important. So for us, we primarily work with businesses in the United States.
So we’re not just confined to just because we’re a virtual business. But if you have a virtual work and motor business, then you would want to make sure that you serve businesses within whatever region or county or city. Any specific that you want to list here. So once you have that information in place, what does that look like next for you?
Right? So here’s a good example of the type of…
We talked about these sheets earlier, once you have that information, there is the actual dashboard to actually monitor and look at the current performance that you are getting on Google Map itself. So this is very, very, very important to do so. By having that information, it helps you understand and see where your phone calls are coming from and who’s connecting with you. Again, this is a screenshot of this, so there’s even more detail that you can dive into to see where the visitors are coming from, when did their call, and so forth.
And this is one of the cool things about Google Business Profile itself once you set it up properly. The other thing with that is some of the best practice shared with you here today is, again, make sure you have consistent information across the board, keep your business profile up to date, take advantage of posting. Here, we have 90 days, but if you can, at least every 20 days I would go in and put information. There’s plenty of information you can post on Google or a business profile, whether it’s an event that you have in-house, an event you are attending, or things that happen with the company.
We’re moving things around over the summer when there was a break, all of that happening. There are tons of things you can actually share with that information. Make sure you respond to reviews. When customers, whether it’s good or bad, go in there and answer the reviews or give them feedback, as well as answer questions as well.
Those are very, very critical to have. We’re going to continue on what does that look like. The second part of this, the second thing that I want to share with you today is how to create, build your citation consistently. And as I mentioned to you earlier, what is NAP?
Nap is name, address, and phone numbers. Those are three very, very, very important components of your business that you need to make sure it’s consistent across the board. And you can see on the map here, all of those different directories and places, all of them interconnected to each other and provide information to each other. So it’s very important to ensure you have that information consistent across the board.
And one of the thing that you can do also is making sure the content for this is optimized and we move where it needs. One of the ways to do that is create an audit for your citation. There’s plenty of tools we’re going to go over to create an audit so you can see what are some of the content that you need to remove and not what are the content that you need to change. In the US and Canada, there are four main
aggregate groups: Factual, Cion, Info Group, and Neustar. I don’t know them changed their name, but Info Group is one of them. The name actually changed in the last six months or so. But that gives some of the aggregators that you want to look for.
What does that mean to you from an ecosystem system perspective. I’m going to go over like, when the search engines look at information, there is an interconnected highway to how information gets distributed to different users and different information that get from one system to the next system to them or double-verifying that information. So if you look at this map here, you can see where yellow goes to yellow and green and dark green and blue. So if you look at this from a cost system perspective, you look at some of the key aggregators, take Acxiom, for example, they talk to Google directly, the cost search engines, so that Google doesn’t really necessarily go after Acxiom and say, Hey, give me information.
But when you have your business, that’s why we talk about the name, address, phone number, if that information is a mix, that’s one signal Google can look at say, I wonder how much those people keep up with their business. This is why it’s so important to ensure you not only submit your business to those different directories, but also making sure they are up to date. This is why it’s so important to do what we call an audit with your directory and audit with your maps. Here’s what this looks like, and there are a few tools that can help you do so.
There’s LocalMars, which is again, all those tools that they have free trials in them. So if you work with agency like ours, we have access to those tools and other tools that we use and our experience. But if you were to do this by yourself, there’s LocalMars, there’s BrightLocal, AdviceLocal, and there are too many to name here, but there are some of the tools that we know if you use those that can help you do an audit on your different citation to make sure the name of your business and the information that you have out there is consistent across the board. Just want to share that with you here.
How do you track all of that? The beauty of it is that this is a screenshot actually directly from one of the tools that I just showed you, which is BrightLocal. There’s a lot of different ways you can get that information. As you’re looking at this here, you can see there are currently four areas in the map, which is the name.
And when you dive into each one of those different errors and things that need to be updated, you can see where the errors are. For example, if your address is 123, suite 10 and there is somewhere, it’s Suite 100, those are two different addresses and the aid of search engines. You want to make sure your address is very consistent. Now, that could mean you really have two different addresses, but you want to make sure that is consistent across the board and the search engine is well aware of it.
Some of the best practices that we preach and we highly, highly encourage you to do, although there are tons of tools that can help you do all that, look at different information, but nothing beats a manual, manu-to-manu looking at the information and making sure it’s right. So manually claim and optimize your Google Business profile is probably one of the best thing you can do. The next thing is use one of those tools to do the audit for you so you can see how other people are looking at your information on different places, and then making sure you look at all those different aggregators that we just talked about and ensure that you have all those information or correct throughout, and take advantage of those tools that are out there.
Again, you don’t have, as I mentioned to you, you can actually use all of this by yourself. If you have the time, you have the knowledge, and some of you guys are very geeky out there, you can take one of those tools. But if not, then you can work with an agency like us where we help you get your information out there. So what are some of the top marine directories that you want to get into?
Now, some of them are not marine specific, but those are very important to ensure your business is across the board. You saw the four aggregators that we showed you a moment ago, and then there are these directories that you want to get. Make sure at least get listed in them. So it’s Foursquare, MapQuest.
I know some people are like, MapQuest? Well, when you search for something now, you’re going to either find it on Google, MapQuest, NG, all those big name, they’re not necessarily just Google. And how you get found on those information is how well you optimize those different citations. So you want to make sure you are everywhere every time so that you give your potential customer a chance to find you, your business, product, and services that you are offering them.
And obviously, having your business listed on different directories and national association are equally important because our national association, even they’re not doing a good job from an SEO, online digital perspective. But one thing that Google understands, those different associations are an umbrella for a group of industry expert, industry company, retail. So it is important to ensure that you get listed on those different directories. Now, we’re going to dive right into the third element for getting you listed up there is, we have real reviews from customers.
Reviews is becoming so prevalent in the last few years that the way we see it continue to go, it will be probably one of the first thing that gets you a deal or not getting a deal from a customer. This is why it’s so important to make sure your customers you ask for the reviews and making sure you follow up to have that review. So what can you do to get review from customers? There are tons of tools out there, and I’ll share a few of them with you in a moment, but take advantage of tools that can automate a lot of the information for you so that when someone finished, you serve them, you provide the service, you think they’re happy.
The next thing you could do within your CRM, depending on how it’s set up, you could really say, Satisfy customer, want reviews. That alone can trigger a lot of different things for you that automate the process to send an automatic message. Sometimes that message can come directly from the owner, the general manager. The reason you want that is because it’s come from authority and it really helped the customer feel like they’re important that you take time out of the day to act for a review.
Although it’s automated, but sometimes they don’t even realize it is. But it’s like, Hey, Mr. John, I know you were here yesterday. I hope we meet your expectation.
Would love to have you review from you. Please click on the link below to give us a review what you think of us. And that review can go directly to Google or whatever that might be. Another thing that you could do is ask the customer right on there.
Google actually give higher precedents and reviews that are get added directly on your location. So if a customer, after you serve them as they’re getting out, you ask them for review, and if you figured out how to break that, where if they can give you the review right on the spot, actually, that review count even more. And Google gives you higher precedents and actually give you a very big boost on where you’re working on the map for reviews. So this is very important if you can do that.
Another thing I find that works extremely well, after customer leaving, not only you know you will follow up, you have your automation process in place, but train your team so that after the service the customers, both or they finish with the tour, they finish with whatever they need to finish, give them a card, a postcard that says, Can you review us? Or something like that. Make it super easy. Make a QR code so that they can scan it directly on their phone and they will go right on that page to give you the review that they need to give you.
Remove any friction that possible. Don’t go on a long talk about anything specific. Just say, Love to hear your feedback. Please click on this link to give us a review on Google.
That is really straightforward and customer love that. Also, make a call. There are other tools out there you can automate all that process that automatically send a call to the customer saying, Hey, Mrs. Johnson, I know we serviced your boat last week, and I know you came to enjoy our reservation on the rental space, I would love to get a review from you if you’re satisfied with our services.
Things like that, you can automate all of that and build that inside your company. There are sales team out there that would be more than happy to ensure that if it is big in your culture, then we’ve used it technically automatic for you because everybody will make sure they let the customer know to leave a review. Now, as I mentioned to you, I’m going to give you some of the tools that really could get you automated most of that process we just talked about. So just a few of them.
Yes, boarding is our own in-house tools that we have for our own customers, but
there are other tools that you can use: CustomerLobby, Birdie, ReviewBars. There’s a ton other tools out there that you can actually plug in within your system. And there are other system you may have already been using might offer a customer review inside. So use your imagination, get reviews from those customers as much as you can.
So the next thing, how do you get those reviews and the five star and so forth. Again, customers are making decisions based on a review nowadays. And another thing to how this helps you when you have reviews on your profile within Google Business Profile itself is that it helps the local map ramping signal. It tells Google that customer trusts you enough to give you reviews, especially if you have some good reviews.
Customer trusts you enough to give you a review, take the time to give you reviews. Then there must be something good about your service or product, then Google will go out of its way to promote your business to some degree, right? Because this is free advertising you’re looking at. And as you can see, we were looking at the three-pack, people that were above you paying a lot to get up there.
So if you can get your Google business profile and ship and get reviews from those customers, that would be very helpful. Also, increased customer conversion. Again, that is very easy win for you. You could use those reviews as marketing tools.
So instead of going back to the customer to give you a testimonial, sometimes the review can be used as testimonial for your website or any marketing piece you’re putting together. And then it will show that make your business appear more credible to local customers. So this is why it’s so important to have that in place. The next thing you can do also, as I mentioned earlier, is one thing to have all those different information in place, all those different tools in place, optimizing your Google business profile, get those reviews.
But it’s also equally important to look at your website optimization, which is a tool I will come back to in a moment. So what I do want to go over first, though, is the geo-grid ranking that Google really pushing in the last two, three years. Now, it’s not just Google pushing, this is how a lot of the tools help you visualize what, when someone search for your product or services, what it looks like and tell you where you are ranking. So this is if you are in a service area that, as I mentioned earlier, that cover many and lots of different spaces, so a boat rental is a good example.
Let’s take a boat dealer, for example, that will sell only Boston Whale, for example, or sportsmen. So there are sometimes manufacturer restriction and geographic location that you can serve. So if, for example, as a dealer that I can only really advertise and push new boats to customers within that five, six city radius, usually I don’t use the miles because it’s deep in where you are, but city radius, right? So what you want to do is making sure you get ranking for that boat dealer and that brand you carry for that specific location.
But in case, let’s say, let’s use Fort Lauderdale as an example, right? So around Fort Lauderdale, there are lots of different mini little cities. But let’s say your dealer carry Greenly White, and Greenly White has a regional restriction based on new boards. You cannot really just say, I’m going to advertise in Miami and try to get customer in Miami.
You got to stay in your restriction or else you might get the not so nice look from the manufacturer. Therefore, you want to stay in your lane. Well, around Fort Lauderdale, there’s lots of different cities that you can try to work for as a dealer that is located in the middle of Fort Lauderdale that serve the plantation, Sunrise, Davis, and you see where I’m going with that. So there’s a lot of different ways you can get link for this.
And that’s a visual way to actually look at it. And you can do this by making sure you get the right subscription and the right data, you fit the right information to White Local, one of the tools that I shared with you earlier to actually see what this looks like. Actually, coming back to the grid, I’m sorry. This the slide I’m talking about here in terms of where you are based on the ranking.
It is very, very important that you know how to get that information. Again, one of the thing that you want to do is to ensure that before you start looking at getting all those different rankings, the first thing you want to do, though, is to make sure you clean your house. Remember, we talked about cleaning house earlier. Getting your website optimized, getting the right content on the website, getting your HTag, unique content, all those different information that you need on your site.
Then once you have your site optimized for that, the next thing you want to do is to do the Offs page optimization. The Offs page optimization is what we’ve been talking about the whole time. Make sure you claim your Google Business Profile. Now, we just keep in mention Google Business Profile, but there’s another one you can claim is Google Bank marketplaces.
They change that name all the time. But claim that as well. Make sure Apple is coming up with their own directory right now. They are allowing registration.
Make sure you get listed in there. Make sure you get your Facebook in place and then get your citation right across the web. Then make sure you leverage all the different tools so you can get the right customer to give you the right reviews on time, but also build authoritative link with the local businesses and service and order function, and then strategically push the rest of your content. Now, back in the day, there was a time where you could go online and write it a nice blog post and within a day or two, your website start ranking.
And these days are gone, long gone. Not that blog posts are not important. Actually, they still are. But it’s even harder now to get ranked for just a blog post.
It’s actually very difficult, especially in the marine space. It’s still very difficult unless your blog post is this very special one, and there are ways you can make your blog post special. What we’re going to go over now is the introduction. But before I dive into this, I want to check in.
I want to see if you have questions, if you have any specific thing that you want me to bring back or go over. Now, I do want to go answer a couple of questions while before I get into the new authority signal that I will share with you. One of the questions we got is which geo-grid ranking tool will you suggest for the marine businesses? Now, again, there are tons of them out there, and there isn’t one specific for marine businesses because there isn’t one.
What I would suggest you do is looking at different tools that exist. Bird Eye is pretty good, has one. There is BrightLoco, has a geo grid maps. Google actually even has one, but it’s not the best one, actually.
You still can use that, but it’s not the best one. You canfor geo grid tools, I would recommend BirdEye or BrightLocal. And again, Mars has one. There’s a lot of different tools that have different little bit version of it and different for what you’re looking to accomplish.
Another question we have is, can you describe what the automation tools look like for YES boarding and how it’s different? For YES boarding, this is something that we built in-house for marine industry business specifically. So whether you’re a boat rental, boat club, or boat dealer, the whole setup is just for you. Meaning that how we take leads coming in, we allow you to manage your leads directly from that system.
And from leads, how you communicate with existing clients directly from there because it’s a CRM as well. So you can actually use that as your own CRM. And then inside, there is a built-in communication channel that’s also allow you to actually request reviews from customers, request anything you want. And you can actually send a drip campaign directly from that system.
So that is what Yes, Boding is about. And we’d be more than happy if you are interested and you can request a demo and one of us will be more than happy to jump on a call with you and show you how that works. Okay. So I guess the other question that we got here, what factors?
How does what I described here work from business to business? We focused this webinar on marine business specifically in terms of the different tools and different scenario that we have faced and tested and have experienced on. Again, a boat rental that is operating in Marco Island, Florida, for example, versus one that is operating in somewhere in North Carolina or Virginia and for that matter in San Diego, are two different locations, sometimes different clientele. But at the end of the day, the operation is very similar.
There is workflow and processes that’s already in place. When the customer come in, what are the things that we do? How did we get that customer to do business with us, to reserve? And what are the things that we need that customer to do?
That information is the same across the board. That’s how we looked at how what we present here work on business. We know if it works for one boat rental, it would work for the other one. The same for dealers.
We have an inventory system that we use a plugin for WordPress that’s connecting your dealer, whatever the DMS you are using, you can use, whether you’re using Lightspeed or Salesforce or Worldlike, you want to enter your inventory manually on the backend, we have all of that set up because we know one Bot dealer, the only difference between Bot dealer A and B is a few different things. You might use a different DMS, but at the end of the day, all of you guys carry inventories. At the end of the day, all of you want to sell more inventory. There is more customer on the door.
So all of that, we base that information this way. So coming back to how Google looked at the special generation, the new authority signal, and how Google approached that. So Google is this is what we currently call the new cutting edge content marketing authority signal. It’s called EAT.
That really help customer…
That really help you achieve a better superiority over your competitors. And what EAT stand for…
There it is right here. I’ll share that with you. This is what EAT stand for, is expertise, authority, and trust. And this is something that you can find even more detail about that Google really have extensive library about it, how to get to become an expert in your field, how to build authority for that field, and making people trust you to want to do business with you to use your service or product.
And this is the new way that Google really pushing every customer that you interact with. You want to make sure they perceive you as an expert. They see you as the authority in the space. You understand boarding.
You understand what the pros and cons of when someone buy a boat, how that works. You receive that information by providing quality content, structured information, and really rich detail information that help you. Now, the authority piece is when you showcase not only providing information to your website, but also be able to showcase that knowledge by talking to or providing information to different outlets that can help you look at as someone, as an authority in the space. Now, the trust itself is what the signal send to Google.
When Google looked at a piece of content you write on your website, you’re talking about, for example, why electric boats is the feature of boarding, for example. And then next week, there is a piece on ABC, and you are the expert that’s actually giving the quotes, the information on that, Google actually can tie in that information. And that’s how you build that trust rank because of that signal that you’re the one that provide that information on your website, you’re the one that talk with Fox News, CNN about electric boats on that specific market, and that giving Google that trust rank to see, wow, this guy has to know what he’s talking about if all those different scenarios line up, all these stars line up.
And this is a good example of how you can see where each of those signals ranking from a local pack information, how Google take a look at your ranking, what are the most important things to Google? So the first thing you can see is Google Business Profile signal. So meaning that the proximity, whether someone is at the category they’re looking at the type of business you are in. The other one is the signal, meaning that what are some of the domain authority that’s looked at your business product or services and how can we rank this?
You can see at the very third right up there, it’s it’s Review Signal. Do you see that? How important reviews are. That is why it’s so critical to ensure you have Review on your website.
The third one is the citations, meaning those directories that we talked about earlier, you ensure you have all those details in place, as well as the personalization, the behavior signal, and so forth. There’s a lot of critical piece that you can look at to ensure you get ranking properly as you go. Now, why all of this matters and how can you get up there? Well, we’re going to get right into page quality ranking.
What are some of the most important things that Google looked at when they want to rank your website? We talk about the expertise, the authority, and the trustworthiness of your content. But what’s important also when you’re thinking of those is what is the purpose of the page? When you’re writing a piece of content for your website, you want to look at what is the purpose of this page?
What is it that you want a customer to learn on your website, learn on this particular page? What is it that you want them to know or do? How do you want them to perceive that information? This is very, very important.
As you know, we’re not talking about AI here, but Google algorithm has become extremely, extremely smart. It understand how the user is starting to feel about this particular information and how that content can be read across the board. It’s very important. Obviously, the expertise, the authority that we talk about is very, very critical.
And also the information about your website in general. Really, really want to focus that information in one centralized place. What that means is that you guys know very well many, many marine businesses have multiple subdivisions. A boat dealer could be a mariner, a boat rental, a boat repair shop, and a boat club.
All of that in one. I would say almost 99% of the time, the owner, the general manager, even the marketing director want to have one website for all of this. And there’s nothing wrong with that. The only problem you run into is you’re competing for each one of those categories of business from a Google eyes perspective.
So you have to be very careful how you structure that content. This is very important to look at how your website content looks like. Some of them are important and special local SEO factors to look at are, and that’s really very critical on how you get ranking or proximity, is how when the user search for that information where he or she’s located, coordinated by the zip code and the type of content. And the rest of it is out of your control, it’s on Google’s hands.
But it’s important to make sure that is why it’s so important to update your business profile often, right? Relevancy. How relevant is the search that person did to the content that you are providing for this particular political service where you are? So in Pavanace, the authority that you have and the local business.
Good example, again, we’re going to use a boat dealer in Fort Lauderdale. I’m in downtown Fort Lauderdale. I’m looking for a really white boat dealer. You see, I’m going very specifically here, right?
And then Pavanace. Let’s say there are three, four, five boat dealers that really have done their job from an SEO perspective that could easily get ranking in Fort Lauderdale area for of Grayley White. So if I search for Grayley White in downtown Fort Lauderdale, Google will show me one, the proximity of where we are to what is the closest dealer to me, but not necessarily just that. It’s looking at how relevant my search to the dealer.
This is why it’s so important to update your Google business profile to the information that you are providing, service that you are providing. But also, what is my trust authority in that space? If I don’t have any reviews, I have no reviews. And then somehow I vaguely mentioned on their website that I carry Grady White, that person, say, they carry Greenly White.
So If that might be next to this dealer that carry Grady White, that dealer may not even show on my search result because of their relevancy and prominence that may not be showing within their business profile. I want to share that example with you to clarify that point. I know we have gone through a lot here today, unpacked a lot of information. We talk about business profile, how to claim it.
Make sure you use the different tools that are available in the market to manage the different citations. Look at the different data aggregators out there. Make sure your business information, the nap, is consistent across the board. Make sure you get your online reviews, talk about make sure all your citations across the web is on par.
We talk about on-page optimization, how to make sure each of your pages or different pages do have the necessary content, the content is clear. And really, it would be a shame if I did not mention that content is continue to be the king. It will be the king for a very long time because Google continue to fuel to get its fuel from good content and provide the user a good experience. So if you look at content is king, then the ongoing content is the fuel that get the king cooking.
So make sure you audit the content on your website. It’s not very hard, actually, to do a review on your website, making sure the content is consistent and very clear. It’s very easy to understand. Make sure you get good content continually published.
Now, obviously, if you have a business, you write the content today, you’re not going to need to change the content tomorrow. How do you get fresh content out there? One way you can do that is continue to provide values to potential customers that visit your website. That means you’re looking at different blog posts, maybe some lead magnets you create, so you can allow them to download and review information, provide maybe even newsletter that you publish.
You can actually publish them on your website as new content really help you look fresh and stay up to date. And the expertise signal that we talked about, we talked about EAT, the expertise, authority, and the trust that Google find that you perceive that really brings a lot of value to you, your business, and your product that you provide. So again, making sure all that information are provided to the end user, the end customer that come to your website. I know I went through a lot here, so I want to leave this here, but before I answer any questions is I want to share with you on our website, there is a page that you can actually download even more detail on the ultimate guide to mastering Google Local Search.
Google Local Search is here. It’s continue to enhance. It’s going to get evencompetitive. So the more you understand how it works, the faster you get in front of the pack, the better it is for you.
And this URL is the…
We will share that with you here on the group, and you can actually pick this up to directly from…
Let me just drive it for you on the chat here. This is the URL to actually get this…
Get this ultimate guide for mastering Google’s local search if you want to download that. So on our website, we have a lot of different resources. Feel free to check it out. It’s bothmarketingpost.
Com/resources. And where we have books, library or magazine that we publish every six months. We have blog post, white papers that you can download. We have white papers for a lot of different business segments within the different verticals within the marine space.
We have webinar like this that we host every three or so months. So we’d love to have you tune in and get more detail, more information. So again, I have gone through a lot of different information here today. I know you probably got to overload with that information.
But for those of you guys that stay all the way to the end here, I want to offer you this opportunity if you would like. Again, this is no obligation. No, it’s free of cost if you want, don’t forget to submit your information to us. Shoot us an email.
Hello@hry@bookmarketingposed. Com, and I’ll be more than happy. My team and I would be more than happy to actually send you an analysis, a visibility of what your online presence looks like. And then if you would like, you can actually even schedule a time for us to walk you through.
There is no obligation. You can take this to your current marketing agency, or you can decide to do this yourself in-house, or we can see if we would be a good fit to help you with that. Again, schedule a free strategy session directly with us here. I want to answer a couple more questions that came up very quick, and then I’m going to let you guys raise your hand to come up if you have any question that you want to talk or would like to answer.
One question we got was, how can we be sure all those different factors are accurate to win on Google Maps? As I mentioned to you, as I share with you, there are a few tools out there that you can actually run decent, good audits. Obviously, experience does matter in this case because if you have experience in doing this, it really helps you visualizing and understanding the different answer that you’re looking at when you do the audits. But at the end of the day, most of those tools give you a very self-explanatory detail on what you are looking at.
Use one of the tools that I mentioned, whether it’s a White Local, Mars Local, even Google itself, gives you lots of resources that you can use to look at different factors and where you are ranking and where you are, especially from a citation perspective, it tells you exactly where you are ranking, where the information is duplicate, don’t make sense, or need to be updated. So a lot of that information, you look at the audit and then make those updates as needed. So that’s really what I would suggest that you do. So one of the other questions, does it help to use tack images for your Google business profile?
Yes and no. I would suggest that you don’t highly go against this one. I think it really helped customer feel the authenticity around you and your business and product and your team. So my suggestion is if you don’t have original images, don’t post much.
Again, good photos nowadays are very easy to come by. Your phone, whether it’s an iPhone or Android, doesn’t really matter now. Most of them can take very, very good pictures. There is no need to actually use a Photoshop or a stack image.
So I think it would be best to simply use your current, for the stack in-house, your team, your shop, all the different inventories that you have, showcase them, different movements that you have that’s going on. So with that, I’m going to open the flow for another two, three minutes. Raise your hands if you have questions, if you want to come on stage to ask specific questions. Otherwise, we’re about to wrap it up in two minutes or so.
So questions for me, again, the floor is yours. If you want to come on stage, just raise your hand, bang me, and I’ll be more than happy to let you come on. So any additional questions that you guys have? All right.
Well, as I mentioned, guys, it is an honor. This is one of those events that I’m always pumped and very excited about. Where we are, I’m not the best professor, but I love to teach and share knowledge with what we know and what we can do and would love to continue to contribute to the marine industry and get business to understand what they need to do not only to work on Google, but also grow your business. The ultimate goal here is most of us run business to grow the business, help the team be good citizens to our family, our community, and our country.
Again, it’s been an honor, guys, to share some knowledge with you. If you have any questions and anything we can do to help, feel free to reach out. We are a team, a mighty team here that my whole team would be more than happy to help you get to the numbers that you’re trying to work for. All right, guys, that’s all we have.
Thank you so much. We appreciate your time. Feel free to reach out if you have any questions, send that question directly to harry@marketingpools. Com.
That’s really it. Thank you. I know your time is very valuable. I take plenty of it this afternoon.
Appreciate you staying around with me. And if you don’t have any other questions, we’re going to shut the webinar down in about 15 seconds. Again, thank you. You have a great day and enjoy the rest of the week.