For the past few years, Google has been launching a number of updates to enhance your business’ reach, especially in Local Search. One of these handy features is Google Posts which provide a good opportunity for both small and large businesses to maximise traffic and exposure to an even wider audience. In this article, we look at what Google Posts are and how you can use them to drive traffic to your site and give your business maximum exposure.
The Google Posts feature allows you to enhance your marketing efforts by publishing your company’s events, products, services, and other launches directly on Google Search, via what is called the Knowledge Panel, and on Google Maps. The feature was first used in January 2016 as “candidate cards” to help political candidates achieve more visibility in their campaigns. It was later rolled out to a few small businesses but at the moment it is available to anybody with a Google My Business (GMB) profile.
The feature basically allows you to post content directly to Google’s search engine results pages and reach a wider audience searching for relevant products or services. With Google Posts, you publish or update relevant information about your business such as your company’s name and address, products or services, your opening and closing hours, and even interact directly with customers who have left reviews about your company. There are many ways you can use Google posts since they leave you plenty of room for creativity. Depending on the nature of your business, you can post about anything including:
- New promotions or daily deals announcements
- Promote upcoming events
- Highlight your company’s best sellers or latest products
- Promote newsletter signups
- Sell products or services directly
- Take customer reservations
- Engage with customers who have left reviews and much more
Remember, while creating your posts, you have a range options that you can use to make the post more appealing or effective. For instance, you have the option to add an image, 300 words of promotional text, and even a call to action (CTA) button. The best part is that your posts have a high chance of showing up on Google Search or Google Maps when a user types a query relevant to your posts.
How Google Posts Help to Extend Your Reach
When you use Google Posts effectively, you can extend your reach and attract more customers to your business. But how will potential customers see your posts and discover your business? This happens in a very simple way. When an existing or potential customer looking for reviews or any information about your company searches your business name on Google by its name, your previously published Google posts will show up in the Knowledge Panel, which is located below your company’s location and contact details. Your Google posts will even be displayed more prominently if the person is searching via a mobile device.
Here is another way Google Posts can give your business more exposure. If a prospect happens to be searching for products or services similar to what you provide but not actually looking for your business, chances are that your Google Posts will show up on Google’s Local Finder if the user clicks on your company’s name to learn more about the product or service. You stand to attract more customers via Google Search when you make good use of these simple short posts.
So how and where do you create Google Posts?
To create a Google Posts, simply sign in to the dashboard of your Google My Business and go to Manage Location if you have multiple locations to pick the location you wish to post for. Go the Posts menu located on the left under Home and write your short post. The page should be similar to this:
Your post is limited to just 300 words, which is enough to promote your business or offers. You are even allowed to include an image and a call-to-action with a link. The post can include one of these CTA options:
- Sign up
- Learn More
- Get Offer
You are also allowed to label the post as an upcoming event with specific dates and a link.
Google Posts can be crafted in four categories namely:
- Events which are posts meant to promote a social occasion or an event. Event posts include the name or title of the event and are exempted from the standard 7 day expiration period. The post will be live for as long as the event’s due date has not passed.
- Offers or Specials which are posts you can use to promote special offers or ongoing and upcoming sales. We recommend that you include a clear high-res image of your product and details about the sale or special discount to hook the reader’s attention.
- Product Updates which you can use to advertise the launch of a new product or new improved versions of your current products. We recommend that you use product updates to promote your launches using high quality images.
- Announcements which can be used to announce any important aspect of your company. We recommend that you only use this category to post announcements that your audience will find beneficial such as the opening of a new branch or informing people when you are hiring.
It is important to post in the right category as your posts are likely to appear in relevant queries on Google Search and bring you more traffic and brand exposure.
Google Posts Best Practices
Your Google Posts should be short, direct to the point, and interesting without fluff. We encourage business owners to always include a high-quality photo, a short concise description using relevant keywords, and a call-to-action. Aim at posting engaging messages that give a positive impression of your business, product, or service without appearing too aggressive. Choose the right CTA from the available options to urge the visitor to take the desired action. Your posts can be shared on Email and social media platforms such as Facebook, Google+, and Twitter to bring you even more traffic and brand exposure. Below is one of the examples how a business uses Google Posts to promote its new store in a new location.
If you would like to find out how your business can use Google Posts effectively to reach your target audience, please don’t hesitate to call us on 03 9043 4444 !