Google is the most visited website on the planet. The site currently controls more than 92 percent of the search engine market. Creating a Google Business Profile (formerly known as Google My Business) is a critical step in attracting new customers through Google search and Maps.

Google My Business is a free Google tool that allows business owners to manage their online profiles in Google Maps and local search results. It is where you can see on Google the detailed listing with information about what you do, directions, contact information, and more. The service also assists your business in being found when people search for keywords related to your industry. The better your listing is optimised, the more likely it is that people will choose you over competitors.

Before we go any further in discussing why Google My Business is important, we will also share with you what’s new about it for 2024. With this never-ending technological and digital advancement, every business owner needs to be updated to the latest updates and changes in Google My Business to be able to stay at the top of the game. 

So, What’s new for 2024? 

Google announced major changes to the Google My Business platform in early November 2021. Here are some of the new changes: 

The New Name

Google My Business has been renamed to Google Business Profile. Google announced the change of My Business name to “Business Profile” in a post via The Keyword. Google also stated that the new name was chosen to “keep things simple.” Many people were also not surprised by this because Google My Business Help documents began using the term “profile” instead of “listing” months ago.

The New Features

Along with the new name come new features. The new features include the following:

  • Manage Your Profile Directly on Google Search and Google Maps – You can now manage your business profile in the updated “Business Profile,”  directly through the Search engine Search, or even through maps for greater convenience and accessibility. This modification aims to make the environment more accessible to any small business that wants to improve its Local SEO.

Performing a Google search with the name of your business will directly display the tools of the separate business profile, allowing you to manage the information, reviews, photos, and all the other elements of your business profile from there. At the same time, you will be able to communicate directly with your customers using the web, in addition to receiving reviews.

  • New Dashboard for Large Businesses – If you used to manage your small business’s My Business profile through the app, that is no longer an option for you now. As previously stated, small businesses will be able to modify their Business Profile data via search or Google Maps, whereas the old dashboard will now be available only to larger businesses.

Large companies that need to manage multi-story stores will be able to organise their Business Profile details from the application, as has been the case in the past, thanks to updated features and tools. 

9 Reasons Why Google My Business is Important for 2024

Now that we already have a preview of what Google My Business is and what the new changes for 2024 are, let us look at why it is so important.

1. Gain or Increase Online Visibility on Google SERPs

Google is the ultimate search referrer, whether you’re looking for foot traffic or web traffic. A Google Business Profile helps people find your business when they are looking for similar products and services in their area.

Your Google My Business listing directs searchers to your location and directions. A listing for a local business, in particular, is more likely to appear when people search for a nearby business using Google Maps.

When you complete your Google My Business profile with your address, contact information, and business hours, many searchers won’t even have to click because they’ll have all the information they need at a glance. The easier you make the customer’s journey, the more likely they will convert.

2. Helps Boost Your Local SEO Efforts

SEO and Digital Marketing, in general, are all about increasing your online visibility. A Google Business Profile is a powerful SEO tool. It plays a very crucial role in your local SEO efforts. 

Google prioritises local business listings on search results pages for relevant keywords, even over well-optimised pages from well-known brands. This is a fantastic opportunity for a small business or new venture to gain exposure and connect with a local audience.

You should always prioritise your local SEO strategy if you want to connect with local consumers. Optimising your Google My Business profile is a perfect way to do it. 

3. Gives Full Control of Your Business Listing

Even if you’ve never used Google My Business, you may already have an existing listing. Google’s local business results and Maps use whatever information they can find about your business, but such a basic entry can make your business appear unprofessional. Worse, a listing that contains inaccurate or outdated information may result in customer disappointment or complaints.

By taking full control of your profile, you can present your products and services in the way you want while also ensuring that your listing is accurate and competitive. You can also avoid visiting third-party websites, such as review sites, which are beyond your control.

4. It Can Increase Your Organic Leads

Customers can get direct access to conversion buttons like your phone number and bookings through your Google My Business profiles. It accomplishes this without the need to first visit a website. 

This conversion shortcut can work wonders for small to medium-sized businesses, particularly those in the service industry. If a potential customer finds you, they will have immediate access to your products and services.

5. It Allows You To Engage and Keep Your Customers Updated

Your Google business listing is more than just a one-dimensional profile. In addition to updating your information if it changes, you can use your account to keep your customers updated or to raise awareness about your new products and services or any new developments in general. 

Google My Business also offers functions that give you access to and the ability to engage with your customers. You can do this in two ways:

  • Responding to ReviewsWhen customers leave a review, the business has the option of responding. This is a fantastic tool for anyone who wants to better understand their customers’ experiences.
  • Google My Business Messages Google My Business also has a message function that allows you to communicate with your customers in real-time.

Posting new content to your Google My Business and responding to your customers’ reviews and messages, like updating your website on a regular basis, helps to keep your audience engaged and keeps you in their minds when they’re ready to buy.

6. Helps Build Confidence and Trust in Customers

Claiming and completing your Google My Business listing increases the credibility and trustworthiness of your business. According to Google research, customers are 70% more likely to visit businesses with complete profiles and twice as likely to trust them.

You can strengthen this trust by promptly responding to customer inquiries and encouraging customers to leave reviews on your page. Positive reviews are more persuasive than any marketing you can do yourself. Most customers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.

7. Helps You Learn About Your Customers’ Behaviour

With Google My Business, you can gain powerful analytics and insights into the online behaviour of your customers. Within your Google account, you can access useful statistics that will provide you with a better understanding of how well your listing is performing in organic search results.

Below are some key statistics and analytics to keep an eye on:

  • Views – shows how many times searchers have viewed your profile, photos, and posts.
  • Engagement – determines which posts are generating the most attention from searchers.
  • Audience – learn the age, gender, and location of searchers who come across your GMB listing.
  • Search Queries – discover what keywords searchers are using to find your brand. This can also help your local SEO strategy. 

Website Clicks – find out how many users are performing high-value actions, such as visiting your website from your Google business listing.

8. Google My Business is Everyone’s Business

Because Google My Business is so widely used nowadays, ignoring this basic tool is a great disadvantage to your business. It’s an additional layer of competition, and if you want to stay ahead of the competition, you’ll need to have a presence in the Google My Business space like everyone else. 

9. It’s Free and Easy to Use

That’s right, creating a Google My Business profile is completely free. The setup process includes a few formalities, but none of them comes with a price. There is no reason not to use this free but extremely powerful tool.

Google has also made it easy to use, levelling the playing field for businesses of all sizes that understand how to optimise their accounts for the best chance of success.

Optimise Your Google My Business with Us

Now that you know what’s new and why Google My Business is important for 2024, you might have come to a decision to create an account (if you haven’t yet) or optimise your Google Business profile for you to be able to reap all the benefits you can get from this powerful digital marketing tool. 

The more you start understanding Google My Business, the more you realise the importance of Google My Business optimisation services. If you need an expert to help you with your Google My Business account or any SEO efforts in general, know that TopRankings is a trusted SEO Agency in Melbourne, Australia that has been delivering quality results since 2007. Contact us now to know how we can help you stay on top of the digital marketing world.