It’s no surprise that the digital world is an extremely fast-paced, competitive market for businesses these days. Fortunately, well-strategized search engine optimization techniques allow your business to stay on top of the competition, literally. You may or may not already know that optimizing your Google My Business listing will significantly strengthen the SEO of your company — but it’s true!
And do you know just how important the photos are in your GMB listing? They’re not only important, but they’re also absolutely essential to your GMB success.
Google reported that businesses with photos receive 42% more requests for driving directions and 35% more click-throughs to their websites. This turns into more customers for you, which turns into more profit for you. Yep, just from adding photos.
Now you know how important it is to have photos in your listing, but you can’t stop there. If you really want to compete with other businesses, you have to make sure you’re adding the right photos, optimizing them, and keeping everything updated often. Doing these things will make sure you stay in the envied “Top 3” businesses in Google’s search results.
To help you get there, we gathered 5 expert tips and tricks to stay ahead of the game with your photos on Google My Business:
1. Create High Quality, Engaging Images to Make Yourself Pop
This sounds obvious, but it is actually something that a lot of businesses don’t do. Yes, you want to make sure that you’re adding images to your GMB quickly so that you can draw in customers, but if those images aren’t high quality or engaging, it won’t help you in the long run.
It’s ideal to get a professional camera and/or photographer to really make your business pop. One of the best things you can do is to hire a Google Trusted Photographer, who will come to your business and create a thorough virtual experience of your location. Find one in your area here: https://www.google.com/streetview/hire/
If it’s absolutely not possible for you to hire a photographer, the latest smartphones all have great camera quality, so use what you can. It is vital to make sure that the photos are interesting and engaging by using different angles, good lighting, and well-thought-out shots.
You also want to make sure that your images are uploaded in the correct format (JPG or PNG), size (between 10KB and 5MG), and resolution(720 X 720 pixels minimum).
As for the types of photos, you want to add clear images of the outside of your building, inside of the building, your products or service, your employees, and your team at work. The more the merrier!
2. Add Images Regularly
This tip is something that so many businesses overlook when building their GMB listing. A lot of people assume that once you add information and photos to your listing then you are done, which is the opposite of the truth. Google has an algorithm that they use to determine which businesses stay on top of search results, and they always favor the business listings that are constantly updating their GMB.
Yes, this is time-consuming, but it is crucial if you want to stay ahead. Once you add your base photos, you should be adding new photos every 7 days if you can. This doesn’t mean dozens of new photos every week, just one or two recent images of your latest products, service projects, employees or events. Think like the consumer: if you’re looking for a new business online, you want to familiarize yourself as much as possible with the company, building, and products/service. Regularly updating your photos is the best way to do this.
3. Optimize Your Image Information
A huge component of successful SEO is optimizing the information of images, called EXIF data. To do this, you should always rename each image with the proper keywords before you upload it to Google. You should also be adding tags and descriptions to your images whenever possible.
If you’re not already, you should be geotagging all of your photos, which adds a location to your image using exact coordinates. This is essential for Google My Business since your entire listing is based on your location and Google Maps. This will directly link your photo to your business location, which strengthens your SERP position immensely. To do this, we recommend using Adobe Bridge, but there are many other pieces of software that will help with this as well, including ASAPmaps, where a team of experts will do this for you!
Taking the time to complete these steps shows Google that you are one of the most relevant businesses in the area and have the strongest SEO techniques, which will rank you higher than your competitors in search results thanks to Google’s algorithm.
4. Review Images Added by the Public
If you’re new to Google My Business, you might not know that customers can add photos to your business. Google does this to make sure that whoever is viewing your page gets the real impression of your business, showing images from both the owner and from actual customers. This can obviously have its downside, if customers upload unflattering photos or if someone uploads a photo completely unrelated to your business.
Unfortunately, you can’t just delete a customer photo if you do not like it. If you want a photo removed, you have to report it to Google and have them approve the deletion. Because of this, you want to make sure you are constantly checking the customer photos to make sure that you avoid those negative outcomes as much as possible and immediately take care of any problems.
5. Avoid Irrelevant Photos
This point is especially important if Google auto-generated your business listing before you claimed it yourself. Google will pull images that they assume are related to your business, and often times they are not ideal. Add a lot of new, updated photos to make sure that your photos are the ones that are shown first to consumers, not Google’s.
Also, you may have some good quality photos from a few years ago with items or services that you don’t offer anymore. Even if these are awesome photos, you want to avoid uploading them so that you don’t disappoint customers who may come looking for what was in that image. The same goes for uploading photos of an old location if you recently moved your business.
Lastly, this is mostly self-explanatory, but don’t take photos of your building when the weather is bad or upload images that are poorly cropped. If you’re not sure of a photo, think to yourself: “Would I be willing to use this photo in an advertisement?” You should only be adding photos that you are proud of and that will positively showcase your business.
We’re not saying it’s easy, but we are saying it’s worth it. If you are willing to put the time and effort into optimizing your photos on your Google My Business page, Google will reward you with improved search results and hopefully add you to the highly coveted “Top 3.”
ASAPmaps was born from the offices of Epic Web Studios, a Certified Google Partner that started as a small business in Erie, PA, who has 10+ years of experience in search engine optimization. We understand the journey of transforming from a small business with a single client to a full-service digital marketing firm. Our mission is to cement the foundation of sustainable economic growth by helping small businesses just like us. Learn more at ASAPmaps.com.