Have you discovered Google Posts?
This new feature for Google Business Listings came on the scene last year and they are a very useful marketing tool for small businesses.
What exactly are Google Posts?
Google Posts let you share messages (like events and offers). These show up in the local panel on Google search and on Google Maps. You create them within the Google My Business dashboard.
Google Posts appear when people search for your business by name – here’s how my Google business listing looks with the latest post on desktop:
A Post can be up to 300 words in length (plus a photo) – and you can include a clickable call to action button.
Why should I bother?
I know. You’re already overwhelmed by social media and the last thing you need is yet another platform to post on.
Well, the good news is that you don’t need to post often. Normal posts have a lifespan of 7 days while event posts last until the event date. Although you can have several active at once, adding a new one weekly will be just fine.
And there are some very good reasons to use posts.
Firstly, they add extra information for potential customers. Google business listings have very limited content – posts give you more control over what is shown. And on mobile – where most local searches are done – posts are really prominent, appearing above the basic business information:
Secondly, they can have a positive effect on your local SEO ranking (i.e. getting one of the top 3 places on the search results shown on a map). Posts show Google that your business is active and businesses using posts – including myself – have reported very positive results. All for minimum effort.
What should I post about?
Take some time to think about what will work for your business. Here are just a few ideas:
- Events you are running
- Offers and promotions
- Businesses which take bookings such as restaurants, salons and bridal boutiques can use posts to highlight and link to their online booking page.
- New products or services
- A recent testimonial
- Your latest blog article
Although an image is optional, it’s highly recommended that you use one as it will draw attention to your post. Pictures should be a minimum resolution of 720px wide by 540px tall, in JPG or PNG format. Watch out for Google cropping your picture – especially if you use text.
How to post
You add posts through your Google My Business dashboard. Log into your Google My Business account and you’ll find the Posts link on the left sidebar.
From there it’s really straightforward.
When it comes to text you have plenty of space, but be aware that only the first few words will show up on your business listing – so makes these count.
It’s always a good idea to include a button so you can take people directly to the right page on your website.