5 Tips to Get Your Business to Rank in the Top 3 of Google Maps [Video]

5 Tips to Get Your Business to Rank in the Top 3 of Google Maps [Video]

Need to have your business found by more people in the search engines? Here's 5 Tips to Get Your Business to Rank in the Top 3 of Google Maps | www.bigthinkingonline.com

Every Time Somebody Types in a Local Search

With a business identifier, for example, “dentist St Albans”, Google will list the businesses that it deems to be most relevant.  If your business’s client base is pulled from the local community then recent changes to the Google search results, namely reducing the number of businesses listed in the results from 7 to 3 could affect the number of customers who are able to find your business.




The good news is that if you are listed in the results 3 pack, you will get more calls and more inbound leads for your business. If your business isn’t in that all important top 3, this post and video will give you the advice and tips you need in order to improve the relevance of your Google maps listing yourself.



#1 Verify Your Business Listing.

The first thing that you need to do is check that your Google+ business page is verified. If your first though is ,“I don’t even know if I have one,”  don’t panic, because you probably do. Several years ago Google created 83 million business pages based upon data that was already on the internet and other business directories, many businesses never even realised the page was there and the features remain unused – until now!


To find your page, go to Google and type in “Google my business”.  Click through to the Google My Business page, then click the Get Onto Google button. You will be prompted to enter your Google email address and password to log in. If you don’t have one you can sign up for a password.  In the search bar where it says “find your business” type the name of your business and it should bring up your business listing.


Google will tell you whether the listing is claimed or not, and it will also say whether it’s claimed with the email address you are using. If it is, great!  You can log in and edit the page. If the email address doesn’t match then you need to claim your business.


To claim your business you will need to verify that you are the owner, which you can either do by having a verification pin sent through to your mobile (immediate), or by postcard (which can take 2 weeks). Once you have that pin, enter it into the verification page and your listing will be claimed.


#2 Choose the Correct Category

Once you’ve got the business page verified the next thing you need to do is to check that your business is registered in the correct category. There is no point in your business being listed as a Painter and Decorator if you are a Lawyer!


You can see what category your business is listed as by searching for your business in Google. In the search results, on the right hand side underneath your name you will see the primary business category that you are registered under.


finding your category on Google+


In the Google My Business Centre, check what category is selected and check that it is relevant. If the category that is selected against your business is not correct, then you need to edit the category by searching for a category that better suits your business needs. When you have found the correct category simply hit save.


Google always recommend that you select your business category on the premise of “my business is…“,  rather than “My business does..”


With that in mind don’t go and select all of the services that you offer as this would be against Google terms of service which could result in a penalty against your listing.


Example, If you a private dentist, then you would select Dentist and potentially Cosmetic Dentist, but  not teeth whitening, crowns and implants as these are services that you offer and do not reflect who you are.


#3 Name, Address, Phone Citation (NAP)

The next thing that you do is it is check that the name, address and phone number of your business is registered correctly. In local search this is what’s known as a NAP citation and this citation is what Google uses to recognise whether your business is trusted and relevant in the local area.




If your business has been open for 18 years, the likelihood is that it has been mentioned and recognised online by other members of the local community and will also be included in other website and local business directories. Google uses those citations to help identify how trustworthy your business is.


That is why it is vitally important to make sure that your Name, Address and phone number are correct.


Once you have verified that your NAP is correct with Google you need to check that it is exactly the same as it is listed on your website.


For example, if you’re business is 1A Church Road in Google and your website records your address as 1 Church Road, that is an inconsistent citation and Google will consider that in a negative light. This will have an impact on your position in the local listings .


#4 Citations listed in Business Directories

Once you have checked that your NAP citation is consistent on Google+ and on your website you need to consider how many citations are online and if they are all consistent.


local business directories


As I mentioned above, if your business has been around for a long time it is likely that it can be found on a variety of business directories both local and others that are specific to your niche.


If your business has moved address, perhaps through expansion or because you have merged with another business then there may be a harmful amount of inconsistent citations across the internet.


Some examples of business directories are Yell, Thomsonlocal, Freeindex and Yelp. There are literally hundreds of other local business directories and you need to see which directories have a listing or a NAP citation for your business, then check that NAP citation is consistent with the citation that is listed on both your Google + page and your website.


A number of consistent NAP citations in authoritative business directories is a good signal to Google that you are a trusted provider in your area.


# 5 Positive Reviews

Reviews are significantly important in terms of local search. Google’s mission is to provide an excellent service experience for its users. 


improtance of Google reviews in local search


Google’s users are the ones that go into Google and search for what they need. Google then pulls up the most relevant businesses that match that search criteria and then considers the user generated content around those businesses – typically the reviews.


If you conduct local searches such as “Dentist in St Albans”, “chiropractor in Edinburgh” or simply a “injury lawyer near me”, you will see that in the listings there will be businesses that have reviews.


For your business to stand out in the new 3 pack you need to make sure that your business has reviews. We’re not just talking about 1 review, you need ensure that your business has more 5 star reviews than any of your competitors in and around the local area.


The more 5 star reviews you have the better. It reflects on the services that you are providing to your customers when potential clients look upon your business.


Reviews are so important in the local search infrastructure that you should consider putting in place a review collection strategy where you ask every single person that visits your business to go to Google and leave feedback about you and the experience of they had. By doing this, each customer is effectively sharing their good opinion of you with everyone they know and also potential clients who might see your business for the first time and need persuading that you are the best in your area.


Another benefit of having a large selection of positive reviews from past clients is that if you are unfortunate enough to receive a negative review from a client then it will have less impact amongst all the positives. By proactively asking clients for reviews you are protecting your online reputation.


If you follow the advice in this post, you verify your page, you check your business is registered in the correct category, that your name address and phone number citation are consistent both on Google + and your website, that your business is listed in all the major business directories both locally and niche specific, and finally that you ask every patient to leave feedback for you in order to build up your 5 star rating, then you’ll stand a far better chance of ranking in that all important top 3.


If you have any questions or comments please leave them in the comments box below and I will happily respond.

It’s Time to Shout Out the Benefits of Chiropractic Treatment!

It’s Time to Shout Out the Benefits of Chiropractic Treatment!


For many people,

the world of chiropractic treatments is a vast unknown, and as its use by the NHS is limited it’s something that many people are missing out on. 


In a recent interview, Andrew Lloyd Webber talked about how visiting a chiropractor completely turned around his outlook on life as it solved problems he’d been having for such a long time that multiple surgeries had done nothing to ease.


After having 18 general anaesthetics in one year (2013) alone he said,

“Then I met a chiropractor and I’ve never looked back. I saw him every day for about eight weeks. And three months later I thought it was time we did Cats again.”


How do Chiropractors Get their Message Out

So how do chiropractors get their message out to a wider audience, who are probably in the dark about chiropractic and don’t know that it could help them?


A Great Web Presence

Being online isn’t just about having an old website from 1998. You need to have an easy to find, user friendly website that allows patients to find you quickly and easily. You also need to make sure that you can be found by new patients who may not know about your treatment, but who may be Googling their symptoms. Many people spend the majority of their time online using social media, so if you want to be seen make sure you are on social media too.


Reviews and Testimonials

Show the world the great things your practice does! Reviews from satisfied patients are great because they speak directly to all those other potential patients who are looking for affirmation that coming to your practice will be a good experience.



A short video will go a long way to showing the true character of your practice. Consider making a video of a happy patient or a behind the scenes at the practice video. Video helps to make things seem more real, and patients know that video testimonials are hard to fake. It will also give patients a glimpse of your practice so they can see for themselves what it looks like. (click on the image below to see a video from one of our private dental partners)



We’ve worked with businesses in the healthcare practices across the country to improve their Online Reputation and to help them reach out to new patients. If you would like to know more about how you can improve your practice’s reputation, grow your reach and win more profitable patients then call us today on 0161 850 4413 and we can help you make some immediate improvements.

8 Ways to Improve the Effectiveness of Your Website Today

8 Ways to Improve the Effectiveness of Your Website Today

Without Traffic, it doesn't matter how pretty your website is, but making it work hard for you is not always easy. Read our 8 Ways to Improve The Effectiveness of Your Website Today! | www.bigthinkingonline.com

On Many Occasions People Say To Us,

  • We have a website
  • We have invested a lot in our website
  • Our website gets a lot of visitors

While all of those statements may be true, very few companies that we speak to can tell me how many leads their website generates, how that equates to revenue or profit and how they track this.


  1. Make an Immediate Impact.

Have you ever opened the door to a retail establishment or a restaurant, walked in, looked around and after taking in what was around you decided not to stay and left straight away?


On the internet this happens every hour of every day. It happens on some websites more than others and sometimes there are some very simple reasons as to why.


When a user finds your site and they get to the home page what do they see? What is above the fold? Is there a picture of your logo? Is there an explanation of what you do? Is there any mention to the type of person you help? Is there a telephone number or contact details which someone can find easily and use to speak to someone for more help.


When someone lands on your website you have a MAXIMUM of 10 seconds to get that persons attention. If you don’t provide them with the experience they were expecting when they came to your site they will leave and move on to the next site and that will be another potential repeat client that got away.


what is next


  1. What’s Next?

A person’s main reason for visiting your website is to learn more about how you can help them solve a specific problem. If your website does that, what is the next course of action?

  • Do they fill in a form?
  • Do they call?
  • Do they reach out on social media?
  • Is it clear?
  • What should they do first?

And, if they would rather a different way to contact you what is the second preferred contact method?


  1. Think Of Your Home Page As A Receptionist.

When someone arrives at your offices or practice, their first port of call is probably the reception desk. A receptionist will ask them how they can help and then direct them onto the area of the business that can help them.


Your website needs to do the same. If you are a dentist and a patient has a broken tooth and they are in pain, then on your home page you could have a sign, banner or junction box that says if you are in need of emergency dental treatment call or click here.


When that person then clicks they are taken to a page that specifically highlights the problems they could be experiencing and what they can do to resolve it; i.e. call to book an emergency appointment today.


Navigation should be stupidly simple to ensure that all users can get what they want, FAST.

we are here to help


  1. How Can We Help You?

Each and every page on your website should have a clear primary call to action. If you would like more help about “problem xyz” then please call us on “telephone number” today.


And also a secondary call to action which could be in the form of an opt in box where the user can leave their query.


It doesn’t stop there though, although the rest is probably for another post about conversion optimisation or maybe customer experience! What happens to that information, who handles it, who contacts the interested user? How are they contacted? By phone or email? Is there a script to follow in order to increase sales etc?


As you can see web design is part of the overall customer experience and chances are if a lead does not get contacted within a few hours they will lose interest all together and this will really impact your results.


  1. Highlight the Benefits

Treat each and every page as if it is an “about you”, you being your customers, clients or patients. What are their problems? What are they looking for? What are the BENEFITS TO THEM if they select you as their partner of choice?

  • You have corporate offices overlooking London Bridge, Great how does that help me?
  • You use Nitrous Oxide on your patients. Fantastic, but what does that mean to me?
  • You will highlight all your patient’s joint dysfunctions. Thanks, and that helps how?
  • Remember nobody goes to buy a drill, they go to get a tool that will help them make a hole!
  1. Use Video to Highlight How You Can Help Clients.

Video is powerful. Really, really powerful and consumers are watching more videos online each and every month. It is not just teenagers that are watching video.


80% of Executives are watching more video online than last year.


In fact don’t just read what I have to say watch the video below.



Users are more inclined to watch a video than read text. If that is the case then a short video explainer highlighting how you can help them will aid your conversion.


Video is a much quicker way of highlighting the problem your audience is experiencing and providing the proof that you have a solution that can help them.


  1. Provide Social Proof.

Consumers, clients, patients all want proof. They want proof that you will deliver on time, on budget and more importantly, solve their problem. It is one thing you saying you can do it, but it is another thing if a client of yours says it for you.


Get feedback from your clients and use it as marketing collateral for your business. Over the past five years there has been an explosion in social media and online review sites where anybody can say anything about you, your business and your culture.


Make it your business to leverage the great work that you have done for others to grow your business. After all that is what word of mouth marketing is, this is just leveraging technology to do exactly the same.


Have testimonials on your home page, put them on your about us page. If you can, get video testimonials of clients talking about the excellent experience they have received.


Using testimonials and reviews will increase the number of website users that pick up the phone and call, book and become repeat clients of yours.




  1. Think Mobile

Mobile web traffic is growing. More and more people are using mobile devices to search for information on the internet. If your website does not cater to those then you stand to lose out on a lot of traffic.


That is not a scare tactic it is fact. Google prioritises sites that are mobile friendly. Therefore if a website is not mobile friendly and user searches from a mobile device, your website will not get listed. And even if people who do know you are looking from their iPad or mobile phone then when they land on your site they have to pinch the screen and push to the side and up and down.


The user experience is absolutely terrible. Existing clients might put up with it but will new clients?


Make it easy for people: provide the ability for mobile users to click to call. Provide one click to Google maps to get directions from where they are. Provide clear and accessible buttons the users can click to get more details on whatever they need.


Mobile search traffic will continue to grow as users become more connected so arm your business website to accommodate these changes and satisfy the needs of your existing and potential clients.


If your website has all of these then great, the next step should be to focus on your conversions, understand your numbers; cost per client acquisition, life time spend of a client and then once you have these variables work out how much you can invest in marketing your business website; increasing traffic to drive business growth.


Change is not always for the better

At this point I am sure you are expecting me to say that if you don’t have all this then you need a new website immediately. Well I’m not.


Change is not always for the better. And if you don’t know your numbers to start with then what do you have to compare to if you decide to change provider or you make changes to your website?


How many new calls do you receive from your website each week? If you don’t have a phone tracking system in place then tell your receptionist that every time a new client calls to ask where they got your details.


How many email leads do you receive from your website each week? Do you know where the email goes? How long does it take for someone to respond with the relevant answer?


As a business owner you cannot manage what you cannot track.


If you have got this information but are struggling to understand the detail behind it, or if you’re not sure where to start with even getting hold of your numbers then contact us on 0161 851 403 and we will be more than happy to help you understand how your website could be helping you drive more business.

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