If you own a business, Google Maps is more than a navigation tool for you. It has immense potential to help businesses reach out to customers. In fact, the experts of digital marketing services utilize Google Maps as a part of their marketing strategy. How? We will explore below. Let’s dive in.
Useful Features of Google Maps for Businesses
Message Customers from Google Maps
Businesses can message their customers directly from the Google Maps application. You can turn on messaging from the settings panel of Google Maps. Here is a step-by-step guide:
- Open the Google Maps app from your Android phone or tablet
- Now tap Updates > Messages > Business
- Tap Settings. Then turn on Messaging
The messages from the customers will be displayed in the business messages section in the updates tab.
It won’t be totally irrelevant to mention here that Google also allows businesses to message customers via Google Search. Customers can communicate with a business from search results while viewing a Google My Business profile.
Submit Images to Google Maps Street View
Google allows users to contribute images to Street View. The footage recorded and published with the Street View app is then automatically rotated, positioned, and put in sequence by Google.
This feature is particularly ideal for businesses in areas that don’t have attractive street view coverage.
Though the Street View published photos are available for people in New York, Austin, TX, Toronto, Canada, Costa Rica, Indonesia, and Nigeria, Google seeks to add more regions in the coming times.
Building Authority as a Local Guide
Google depends on the local guides to write reviews, answer questions, add or edit details, and share photos. While a business cannot become local guides, as the business owner, you can join the local guide programme with your personal Google accounts. As you keep contributing to Google Maps, your name will appear with a distinct Local Guide badge.
Over time, you can build a niche audience. And if you keep your major focus will be on your business, your followers will soon be directed to your business.
Publish to the Google Maps Community Feed
A community feed is present in the Explore tab in Google Maps. It allows the users to find the latest photos, reviews, and posts added to the Maps by local experts, businesses serving drink and food, and people they follow.
Businesses operating in the food and beverage industry may contribute content to the community feed by publishing Google posts or updating their profile with the latest information. Remember, the more frequently you publish a post or add content to your profile, the higher is your chances of showing up in people’s community feed.
Answer Customers’ Queries
You can answer customers’ queries directly through Google Maps. Simply visit your business profile and reply to the queries listed there.
Google Maps doesn’t show the names of the person asking the question, so you can also fill up the QA section by asking questions that you think the potential consumers may find useful. It will seem to be an organic question to the customers. Simply visit the business listing and tap the “Ask a Question” button to submit the query. Then, follow the above-mentioned step to provide an answer to the query.
Display Accessible Routes
These days, businesses are being attentive towards the customers with accessibility needs. And Google Maps is facilitating the same by allowing businesses to feature the most accessible routes to visit the business’s physical location.
Here are the steps to follow:
- Type your business’s name in the Google Maps search bar
- Tap direction and select the public transportation icon
- Tap modes and select wheelchair accessible.
If you want to take mobility needs into consideration, you can list accessible routes on your website where you feature the map.
Track Google Maps Performance
Google allows businesses to track key marketing metrics within the performance insights of Google My Business.
Here, you can measure the number of customer engagements initiated in Maps and Search and thereby track the performance of your business.
Wondering what information you can get from tracking? Find below:
- The total amount of messages you have received from Maps and Searches
- The graph of performance over a span of time
- How many people are coming from Maps and how many are coming from Search
- What are the search terms people used to come to your business profile
All the performance data is available for up to six months.
As you can see, Google Maps is more than a navigation tool for business owners. If you want to make the most of Google Maps, the above-mentioned checklist will come in handy for you. And if you need some assistance for optimizing Google Maps for your business, you can engage professional digital marketing services. The marketers will properly optimize your brand presence.
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