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January 23, 2023

Listings-Powered Growth: How Maintaining and Optimizing Online Business Listings Can Increase Revenue

Tracking all of your listings online and keeping them up to date can have a direct impact on your bottom line by getting more customers in the door.

Your business and information associated with it are listed all over the internet. No matter whether you actively manage your listings or not, your business likely has 80+ listings across the web. At a minimum, these business listings include your name, address, and phone number (these three core pieces of a business listing are referred to as NAP), but often there’s more information available. If your business moves locations across town, your email address changes, you adjust your business hours, or you have a new website, then you should adjust your listings–all of them–accordingly. This can be easily simplified if you are enrolled in a business listings management program.

Accurate and up-to-date business listings are essential – not only do they work to help you be found by your customers, but also because maintaining and optimizing listings can increase revenue. Let’s break down why that is.

Outdated listings may lead to missed opportunities

Across the web, your business listing sites contain crucial information about your business and how prospective customers can contact you.

For example, the sandwich shop Jimmy John’s lists its address, hours and phone number on its Google Business Profile (GBP). These basics provide individuals interested in renting a trailer or getting a hitch installed with a way of connecting: call or show up directly at the location during the hours listed. With several other Jimmy John’s in the wider area, it’s important for each location to ensure the basic information is correct on all business listings sites.

Jimmy Johns GBP example (1)

Trust Marketing Note: Google has built functionality into their UI that tells you that this business’ hours were “Confirmed by others 10 weeks ago.” This hinges perfectly on the principle that nowadays we trust our peers more than a business’ advertising. According to the “others,” we can trust what Jimmy John’s GBP says.

Hours Confirmed GBP Example (1)

On the other hand, evidence suggests that when a user suggests a change to your GBP because of an inaccuracy, it immediately has a negative impact on your ranking since Google can no longer trust that your listing is providing the correct information.

The best thing you can do is avoid inaccuracies and stay up-to-date on your listings so searchers are confirming, not suggesting. Business listings management is a great tool to ensure that nothing gets lost or forgotten about along the way.

If inaccuracies are not reported, searchers may call the wrong number, show up at the incorrect address, or arrive when you’re closed. When your prospects reach a dead end like this, they often don’t convert to customers, instead turning to your competitors. Business lost = missed revenue.

These situations can be easily avoided by maintaining accurate listings and updating information when necessary, and it will ensure at least that people interested in moving forward with your business are able to.

Presenting critical and accurate information via your GBP will give you the best shot to bring in more business and revenue via search. A great customer experience starts with accurate and up-to-date information.

Accurate and optimized listings → SEO value → Show up higher on search results

Maintaining and optimizing your business listings has SEO benefits that help your business rank higher on Google and other business listings sites. Reaching new audiences based on what they are looking for online has a direct, positive impact on your bottom line.

A robust, optimized business listing will get more attention from search engines and prospective buyers. Google’s algorithm is designed to present its searchers with what it perceives as the most helpful content. Therefore, it favors companies that have consistent information across all business listings and provide as many details as possible.

With the goal of being more visible in search results and converting more customers, focus on optimizing your business listing.

When doing so, remember the three C’s of an effective listings management strategy: Current, Complete, and Consistent.

How to optimize your business listings:

  • Fill out each section of your listing completely
  • Make sure your contact information is correct
  • Select the most advantageous primary category
  • Include photos and videos
  • Seed your Google Q & A
  • Ecommerce businesses: add products and best sellers
  • Get a consistent flow of review volume
  • Respond to reviews professionally and with keywords

Tip:  Optimize your GBP for mobile and voice search through proper business listings management tools

More and more Google searches are performed on mobile devices. In local search results, though, Google shows only the top 3 results on mobile. Generally, searchers won’t look far beyond the top 3, suggesting that it’s even more important to rank highly on mobile devices.

Searchers using voice search engines like Apple’s Siri, Google Home, and Amazon Alexa will get only the top most result back. Optimizing your GBP and business listings gives you a better shot at higher rankings and getting found via mobile and voice searches.

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Maximize your business potential, use a centralized business listings management solution

With an ever-increasing number of places to list your business, it can be hard to keep up, especially if you manage multiple locations. What seems like an easy task at first, manually updating your listings becomes a lot harder–almost impossible–when you realize the scope of the project.

With 80+ online listings per business location to manage, it’s simply an inefficient use of time to do manually. Not only do you have to optimize your GBP, but you have to keep your listings current on sites like Apple Maps, Yelp, MapQuest, Better Business Bureau, Angi, Yellow Pages, and Dun & Bradstreet Business Directory. You never know where your prospects will find you, and your prospects will expect all the information to be current.

Business listings management services perform the function of keeping your listings up to date and accurate, enabling your business to update all listings from one centralized dashboard. This can be a useful tool, as Google’s algorithm indicates that businesses with across-the-board consistent listings rank higher. Again, Google wants searchers to have a good experience, and it considers businesses with consistent information more trustworthy or at least, worthy of a higher ranking.

A management service implements software that does the hard work so you don’t have to. Not only will it catch all the listings that might have escaped you but it will do the process automatically, saving you the time and painstaking labor involved in manually updating your listings.

The less time you have to spend on your listings, the more time you can spend optimizing other operational aspects of your business, driving revenue in other ways.

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Keaton Smith

I’m a writer, philosopher, climber, mountain biker, and a fried-egg enthusiast. Before joining Widewail as a Review Response Specialist, I attended Middlebury College and studied Philosophy and Art History. I grew up in Michigan, but I fell in love with Vermont while in school.

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