Google Maps Marketing Strategy: The Ultimate Cheat Sheet

Google Maps Marketing in 2024: The Ultimate Guide for Local Businesses

Hey there, local business owner! If you‘re looking to attract more customers from your community and boost your visibility online, there‘s one platform you absolutely can‘t ignore in 2024 – Google Maps.

With over 1 billion people using Google Maps every month to discover and navigate to local businesses, having a strong presence and optimized Google Business Profile is more critical than ever. Ranking high in Google Maps results can mean a steady stream of new customers finding and choosing your business.

But with every other local business also trying to rank on Google Maps, how can you stand out and get the edge over your competitors? Don‘t worry, I‘ve got you covered! In this ultimate guide, I‘ll walk you through everything you need to know to crush it with Google Maps marketing this year.

Why Google Maps Matters More Than Ever in 2024

You might be thinking, do I really need to focus that much on Google Maps? Isn‘t my website enough? Here‘s the truth – Google Maps has become the go-to resource for the majority of consumers looking for local products and services.

In fact, a whopping 86% of people look up the location of a business on Google Maps before visiting for the first time. And nearly half of all Google searches have local intent, meaning people are searching for businesses and services near them.

What‘s more, Google Maps results and Business Profiles take up prime real estate on Google‘s search results pages, often showing above the regular organic website results. So if you want to capture that local traffic and drive more store visits and sales, Google Maps needs to be a top priority.

How to Optimize Your Google Business Profile for Maximum Visibility

Alright, now that you understand the importance of Google Maps, let‘s dive into how to optimize your Google Business Profile (formerly known as Google My Business) to rank higher and convert more searchers into customers.

  1. Claim and verify your business listing
    The first step is to claim your Google Business Profile and verify ownership of your business. This allows you to control the information displayed and interact with customers. If you haven‘t already, go to to get started.

  2. Complete all information fields thoroughly and accurately
    Fill out your Business Profile completely with up-to-date, detailed and accurate information. This includes your business name, address, phone number, website, hours of operation, products/services offered, service area if applicable, business description, and relevant categories.

The more complete and detailed your profile, the easier it is for Google to match you to relevant searches and rank you higher. It also gives potential customers all the info they need to choose your business.

  1. Add plenty of high-quality photos and videos
    Humans are visual creatures, and photos can really sell your business and make you stand out on Google Maps results. Add a variety of high-quality, eye-catching photos of your business exterior and interior, products, staff, and satisfied customers.

Photos and videos help searchers visualize your business, build trust and set their expectations. Businesses with photos see 35% more clicks to their website and 42% more requests for driving directions. And adding videos to your Products or Posts can boost conversions even more.

  1. Encourage and respond to customer reviews
    Customer reviews are a key ranking factor for Google Maps results, and they‘re hugely influential on purchase decisions, with 88% of consumers trusting reviews as much as personal recommendations. So generating a steady stream of positive reviews needs to be an ongoing priority.

Have a system for asking satisfied customers to leave a review on your Google Business Profile – you can create a review link to make it easy. Respond to all reviews, positive and negative, to show you value customer feedback and to mitigate the impact of any negative reviews.

  1. Use all the features of your Google Business Profile
    Google is always adding new features to Business Profiles to help businesses better showcase themselves and engage customers. Take advantage of these to make your profile as rich and interactive as possible:
  • Posts – Share updates, promotions, events, new products to capture searchers‘ attention. Posts can include text, photos and call-to-action buttons.
  • Products – Showcase your products and services directly on your profile to drive more sales.
  • Services – If you offer services like classes or appointments, add them to your profile for easy booking.
  • Questions & Answers – Monitor and answer common questions that potential customers may have about your business.
  • Messaging – Enable messaging so customers can reach out to you directly from your profile with questions or requests.

By fully utilizing all the features of your Google Business Profile, you make it easier for potential customers to learn about your business, interact with you, and ultimately choose you over competitors.

  1. Regularly monitor and update your profile
    Your work doesn‘t end once your Business Profile is set up and optimized. It‘s important to regularly monitor your profile for new customer reviews, questions and messages so you can respond in a timely manner.

Any time your business information changes, update your profile immediately to maintain accuracy. Periodically freshen up your profile with new photos and posts to keep it current. And use the Insights feature to track your profile‘s performance and customer actions.

By staying active with your Google Business Profile, you demonstrate to Google and searchers that your business is legitimate, responsive and trustworthy – all factors that can boost your local rankings.

Boost Visibility with Google Maps Ads

While optimizing your organic Google Business Profile is essential, running paid ads on Google Maps can give you an extra visibility boost and competitive edge, especially for high-value keywords.

Google Maps ads appear at the top of search results when someone searches for a local product or service you offer. Your ad can feature your business name, logo, reviews, photos, promotions and call-to-action buttons like "Call" or "Get Directions".

Maps ads are a great way to stand out to local searchers who are ready to buy and drive more foot traffic to your location. Advertisers see an average 4x lift in store visits from Maps ads.

To run Maps ads, you‘ll need to set up a Google Ads account and enable location extensions. Then you can create search campaigns with location targeting and the "Location extension" option enabled.

Other Google Maps Marketing Tactics to Try

While your Google Business Profile and Maps ads will be the foundation of your Google Maps marketing strategy, there are a few other tactics worth trying to build your local presence:

  • Set up or claim a "short name" for your business profile. This creates a short, branded URL that‘s easy to share, print on materials and use for local citations.

  • Incorporate links and call-to-action buttons on your profile and in Posts and Products to drive key conversions like sign-ups, downloads, calls or orders.

  • Share your profile URL and encourage clicks from your website, email, social profiles, online directories and offline materials. This can positively impact your local rankings.

  • Review the user-generated photos uploaded to your profile for business insights, like which products are popular or how customers are using your space. You can even re-share great customer photos (with permission).

  • Build local citations (mentions of your business name, address and phone number) and links on relevant online directories, community sites and local blogs to increase your authority in local search. Just be sure to keep your information consistent across all citations.

Mastering Your Google Maps Presence

As you can see, there‘s a lot that goes into building a visible, engaging presence on Google Maps! But in our mobile-first world where local searchers turn to Google Maps first to find businesses, investing the time into Google Maps marketing is well worth the effort.

By optimizing your Google Business Profile, running strategic local search ads, and promoting your profile across other channels, you can outrank competitors and turn local searches into a reliable source of new customers.

So what are you waiting for? Get out there and claim your spot at the top of Google Maps results! Your future customers (and your bottom line) will thank you.