What is Google Business Listing and why is it relevant for small businesses? I am writing this topic after having a conversation with an entrepreneur in Mumbai recently. The entrepreneur told me that his website is ranking in no. 3 for one of his chosen keywords in Google. And he has been able to do it without any backlinking efforts.
Although this may sound pretty normal, if the website has organically accumulated backlinks over the years and has the right optimisation in place for the chosen keyword. However, when I happened to check the same on Google, I found out that his website is not ranking in organic searches, but rather in Google Business Listing in Google+ Pages.
Most small business owners might be having the confusion between what is organic result on Google vs what is Google Business Listing.
Organic search results are due to a website’s ranking because of proper SEO, backlinks, performance and social popularity, Google happens to show few results on its search results page from its Google Pages data, which it finds relevant to the search query for local business search.
Why is Google Business Listing useful?
As with the case of the entrepreneur I was talking about a Google plus local listing helps you to come up in Google Search results quickly. For eg, if you search for the term “Carpet Cleaning Bangalore” in google.co.in, you will see the following result:
The results marked in red are all from Google Business Listing.
Now let us see how CleanFanatic appears in Search results below:
For organic seo, Clean Fanatic appears in #2 and #3 in the results (marked in red). Result #4 is from Google business listing (marked in green).
Now let us run the same query in Google.co.in on mobile:
We see the first rank as Just Dial, followed by several results from Google Local Listings.
Although, Clean Fanatic is at #2 in Google for the search term “Carpet Cleaning Bangalore”, on the mobile, it appears in position #9, at the end of the Google Business Listings.
If Clean Fanatic did not have Google Business Listing, it would have appeared in position #9 on mobile, although technically its organic ranking is no #2.
So anyone searching for “Carpet Cleaning Bangalore” on mobile will see Clean Fanatic in rank #2.
Now let us study the listing again.
It has a call option, directions option and Website Option. A user can directly call up Clean Fanatic from the Search results without having to visit their website. This can increase the odds that the visitor becomes a genuine lead for the local business (in this case Clean Fanatic).
So summarising, what are the benefits of Google Business Listing:
1. Shows a separate result apart from organic Google ranking
2. Has a prominent space in all mobile searches
3. A visitor can call the business directly from the Google Business Listing result which can result in lead generation for you.
4. You can compete with other companies easier by just having a local Google Business listing. You might not have a website but still get visibility.