Are you setup on Google Local?

3 min read
Watb Team
The inside of a shop window

If you’ve ever Google searched a company name to find out where they are based, no doubt you would have immediately seen Google local and Google Maps pop up in the search results. This shows you where the company is based, what hours they are open and provides a phone number all without leaving the Google search engine result page…all very useful information.

In this short guide, we’ll show you how to get setup on Google Local.

Let’s take a quick look at what we mean by Google Local. If you’re in Surrey and you search for ‘WATB’, this is what you’ll see on the right hand-side of your results.

Watb Google Local Search example

This also works in your favour for your industry search terms. For instance, I typed into google “web design agency in surrey” and it presented me with Google Local in the search results, top of which WATB stands strong. Take a look:

Watb Google Local Search

The advantages of Google local business listings are priceless…and doesn’t cost a penny:

  • Your business will have more visibility online.
  • If your competitors are not yet on Google Places you will instantly have a competitive edge.
  • Your customers can leave you reviews, for all to see.
  • You can add images to your listing, making you stand out and showing off your brand. It’s free advertising!
  • Mobile first advertising is coming to paid advertising very soon!

How to set up Google local in 5 basic steps:

Step 1

Visit https://www.google.co.uk/business/ to get started, once you’ve fired up that page click on ‘Get onto Google’.

Google My Business example

Step 2

You’ll now be directed to a map with a search tool on the left-hand side of your browser window, pop in your business name, the likely hood is that you won’t find any results for yourself (otherwise you wouldn’t be here right?), you’ll see an option to  ‘Add my business’, click that and let’s get started by filling in all the relevant information.

Google My Business - Add my Business

Step 3

Once you’ve filled out all your information and hit next, you’ll be presented with a screen like the below. You’ll want to check the box to let Google know you are authorised to represent this business and then click continue.

Google My Business Location

Step 4

Google now need to verify your business; they do this by sending a postcard with a unique code on it to the address you just provided.  This can take up to 2 weeks to arrive, once it arrives, note down the code and you’ll be able to add that to your profile (which we’re currently creating) to verify your business.

Google My Business Unique Code

Step 5

Whilst your waiting for your approval you can continue to fill out the rest of your business details on your new listing. Be sure to upload your company logo and fill out as much information as you can about your business.

Google My Business

Great! Your page should now be setup and you should start benefiting from your business having a presence on Google!

Social Media Management Software

In order to promote your business and reach consumers that spend an entire 24 hours a week online, you need to make sure that you have a viable social media strategy in place.

By posting unique and interesting content on your social media platforms, and by actively engaging with followers, you can start to turn this into a funnel for generating leads.

In order to stay on top of your social media strategy, it’s important to have some form of social media management software to do some of the heavy lifting. Software such as this is imperative for scheduling, tracking and monitoring social media content.

At its best, social media management software can help you not only plan your content months in advance, but also remain reactive by letting you tune into ongoing news stories or trending topics.

Screenshot of Hootsuite's homepage

We recommend: Hootsuite

There are a whole bunch of social media management companies out there and all of them offer roughly the same sort of package but Hootsuite is the only one that offers an actually free service (as opposed to just a free trial period).

They do try to hide it on their website though so make sure you follow this link in order to get to the right page.

The free version of this software lets you:

  • Manage up to three social media profiles from a choice of channels including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and LinkedIn
  • Schedule up to 30 posts in advance at any point in time
  • Track follower growth, likes and comments
  • Integrate two RSS feeds in order to find and share compelling content
  • Access Hootsuite’s online help center and community forum

Of course, there’s also a number of paid-for packages that you can buy from Hootsuite that give you access to a great number of services including higher ad spend budgets, automated post scheduling and custom analytics.

But if you’re a small business looking to get started, the free version of the software should be comprehensive enough to allow you to get your social media strategy in motion.

Website Tracking Software

We’ve said before that the secret to a successful lead generation strategy is to keep analysing and refining your methods. Well, website tracking software is the best way to conduct this analysis.

By digging into the analytics of your visitors’ actions, you can start to gain a better picture of why people come to your site, what they want from it, what they dislike about it and how you can improve upon their experience next time.

There are a wide variety of services that can fall into the category of website tracking software, including heatmaps, funnels, user polls, surveys, visitor recordings and more.

Basically, any kind of software that collects data about the ways in which your visitors interact with your site can be considered website tracking software.

Screenshot of Hotjar's homepage

We recommend: Hotjar

Whereas there are a multitude of smaller software companies that focus in on just one website tracking service, Hotjar offers an array of useful tools.

Hotjar tools include:

  • Click, move, scroll, download and share heatmaps that can also be split by device type
  • Visitor recordings that allow you to replay sessions of real site visitors
  • Conversion funnels that identify on which page and at which step the most visitors are leaving your site
  • Form analysis that can help you to discover which fields take too long to fill, which are left blank and why your visitors abandon your form and page
  • A customizable widget that allows you to create pop-up feedback polls
  • Responsive surveys that can be distributed through web links and emails, or featured your site just before your visitors abandon the page in order to discover what their concerns are
  • The ability to recruit test users in order to get instant feedback on your site

Hotjar’s free service is able to collect data from 2000 page views a day and will give you access to up to 300 visitor recordings and 3 heatmaps, forms, funnels, polls and surveys. Unlimited users can be added to your account and Hotjar will also store your data for a full year.

While we’d normally recommend free services when possible, it’s probably worth paying for Hotjar’s Plus plan to begin with.

For just under £25 a month you can collect data from 10,000 page views a day and have unlimited services and reports. Plus there’s even a 15-day free trial for you to test out whether you like their software or not.

Remember

Lead generation doesn’t have to be an expensive endeavour.

What’s important is that you put real effort into all of your interactions with potential leads - whether that’s through educational and informative blog posts, social media interactions or even just a chat on the phone.

If you believe in your business’ ability to help its customers then all you have to do is let that shine through.

Ultimately, these tools are just there to help you meet potential leads on their level. The rest is up to you.

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