What happens next?
A Google Business Profile is essential to local search engine optimization (SEO). Google doesn't just show websites in its results pages for local searches; it shows Business Profiles.
For any given local search, Google may show a maximum of three unpaid Business Profiles -- known as the local three-pack -- and a single paid Business Profile. Users who search for the type of products or services sold by your local business may discover your Business Profile. You can improve your business profile's visibility and overall marketing value, however, by optimizing it with frequently asked questions and answers.
All Business Profiles support questions and answers. It's a community feature that allows customers and prospective customers to ask questions about local businesses.
The questions and answers section is found in the middle of Business Profiles. It's located below the main business-related information and above all uploaded photos and customer reviews.
The questions and answers section is designed to help users find information about businesses that's not listed elsewhere in their Business Profiles. Users can ask questions in this section, and either businesses or other users can respond with an answer in this same section.
Customers can click the "Ask a question" link in this section of your Business Profile to ask a question. You can respond to these questions under your business's name, or other Google users can respond to these questions. Use this three-step process to optimize your Business Profile with frequently asked questions and answers.
Start by identifying common questions. Think about what questions your business's audience asks the most. These are the questions you should post, as well as respond to, on your Business Profile.
You can identify common questions by reviewing customer service communications. Look at your business's emails and chat logs while noting which questions customers ask the most. You can also look at your competitors' Business Profiles to see what questions their customers ask. Regardless, create a list of 10 to 20 questions that customers and prospective customers commonly ask about your business.
Here are some tips on choosing the right questions for your Business Profile:
• Avoid redundant questions already covered in your Google Business Profile's main business-related information section.
• Always choose questions that are relevant to your business.
• Make sure you can clearly answer the questions.
• Stick with questions that are asked by your current and prospective customers.
Now you can post the common questions to your Business Profile. Some of the questions, of course, may already be listed on your Business Profile, in which case you won't have to post them. If a customer or prospective customer has already posted a question on your Business Profile, you can respond to it. But you'll need to post any questions that aren't already listed on your Business Profile.
You can post common questions to your Business Profile, and you can respond to these same questions. To post a question to your Business Profile, click the "Ask a question" link. An input box will load in which you can enter the question. Type the question in this box and click "Post" to post it. The question will now be posted to your Business Profile.
After posting the questions to your Business Profile, you should respond to them with an answer. Google doesn't prohibit business owners from responding to their own questions. You can respond to questions asked by customers and prospective customers, and you can respond to your own questions.
Responding to questions is just as easy as posting them. To the left of the "Ask a question" link is an option to view all questions. Selecting this option will reveal all the questions posted to your Business Profile. Find the question you want to answer and click "Answer" at the bottom.
When responding to questions, ensure you are logged in to the Google profile linked to your Business Profile. You can technically respond to questions under any Google profile to which you have access. Your answers will show your Google profile's name and photo icon. If you use the same Google profile that's linked to your Business Profile, though, Google will add an "Owner" label next to your name.
Leaving unanswered questions on your Business Profile is never a good idea. Customers and prospective customers who need assistance may ask a question on your Business Profile. If neither you nor any other users respond to these questions, their problems will remain unresolved.
Quickly responding to new questions sends a positive message. It shows customers and prospective customers that your business is attentive to their needs and cares about their experience. At the same time, it educates other Google users about your business. Even if a user didn't post a question, the user may read it to learn more about your business.
You can manually check your Business Profile for new questions or use the automated notification feature in the Google Maps mobile app. If you're logged into your Google profile on the app, you'll receive a notification when a user posts a question to your Business Profile.
Google offers a flagging feature for questions. If you come across a question that violates Google's community guidelines, you can flag it. Reasons for which you can flag questions include spam, incorrect information, off-topic and more. You should try to respond to all legitimate questions, but you can flag questions that fall under one of these violation categories.
Local SEO isn't limited to websites. While you can always optimize your business's website for local searches, you can also optimize your Business Profile. Google Business Profiles can rank in Google's results pages for local searches and help you get in front of clients looking for your products/services. In addition to verifying your Business Profile and updating it with accurate business information, you can optimize it with frequently asked questions and answers.
With Synup you get the ability to not just create and optimize your Google Business Profile, but also the ability to track & respond to your online customer reviews, answer questions asked by customers on your Google profile, create questions, keep a track of your information, respond to customer queries on Google business messages along from one easy platform. Signup for a free trial to give it a spin.