Rank Higher in the Google Map Pack By Using GMB Categories as Keywords On Your Website
Google My Business, also known as GMB, is a crucial part of any SEO strategy in today’s world. In order to maximize the relationship between your GMB listing and your website, you need to take advantage of the Google My Business categories. These categories are very important on the SERP (search engine results page), and using these categories like you would a keyword is a great way to increase your exposure, bump your web rankings, and show up in the map pack!
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- How to bring synergy between your website and your Google My Business listing
- Get your GMB listing to show in the Google Map Pack more often
- Choosing the primary category in your GMB listing is critical to your success
- Checking to see which categories are relevant for your business in GMB
- Using your primary GMB category as a keyword on your homepage
- Using variations on GMB categories versus exact match
- Avoiding over-optimization and over usage of the category keyword
- Leveraging your secondary GMB categories into new pages on your website
Thanks for Listening!
Here is transcription from Episode 17 Using GMB Categories As Website Keywords To Improve Your Rank In Google Maps;
Jesse: Hey everyone. Welcome back to Local SEO Tactics. Jesse Dolan here, with Bob Brennan,
as always. And today, we’re going to be talking about some on-page optimization you
can do for keywords. But really, that’s kind of a spoof. It’s not so much about keywords.
We’re going to be talking about your Google My Business categories. But, you should
think of those as keywords. We talked back in, well, I think two or three different
episodes here now about how to pick keywords, how to use keywords on your website,
where to put them in your H1 tags and the title of your website, using them in your
images and things like that.
Jesse: Today, we’re going to talk about how to bring more synergy between your Google My
business listing and your web page, because really, for a lot of … especially for the local
service businesses, a lot of the searches, people are plugging in to hopefully get in front
of you and find you, are going to trigger that map pack. That, you know, one, two, three
listing in Google for locations near you. Things like that, where it triggers the map. So
your Google My Business page and your website go hand in hand here. The first place
you want to start on this is getting into your Google My Business page.
Jesse: We talked back in episode one and two, our first two episodes we kicked off about how
to set up Google My Business and how to optimize it. So, if you haven’t done that yet,
definitely go back to those and revisit that, because we’re not going to cover all those
details on how to set it up and pick your categories. But what we are going to talk about
is those actual categories themselves and how important they are now for your website.
This is something that’s been true for a little while, but especially the last, I’d say, two or
three months, since January 2018, especially here, where it really wasn’t that important
Jesse: And kind of the way that we were just talking to think about these as, you have your
keywords for your website. Hopefully, you’ve gone out and selected the keywords, done
the research to get the right ones in front of you. Your Google My Business categories,
those phrases, those keywords should be your A1 keywords, right? They should be the
most prioritized keywords you’re going after with your website. So using the example
here for truck repair, if we fix some eyes and do roadside service on trucks, a truck
repair shop, let’s say, is going to be our primary category for our Google My Business
Jesse: If you take a look at your website, that should mimic on your website as well. So your
homepage is your default page for your website. It’s the most important page on your
website. We’re going to want to make sure that we add that phrase to our website.
Bob: Yeah. So, I mean, some subtle things here, and this is really important that you really
think through this and cross-check this whole process. So if your site’s already up
already, you just want to make sure this is accurate, if you haven’t done it already. If
you’re just building it from scratch, this is a really important detail that you want to pay
attention to. You just want to make sure that it is what it is that you’re … again I use this
analogy … a coffee shop versus coffee roaster. If you don’t focus on what your primary
business is, your A1 margin business that you’re going after, which is coffee shop, and
that’s … You just randomly throw it in there.
Bob: It’s the third or fourth one down. Well guess what? They’re going to go off after coffee
roaster, if that’s your number one deal, and you’re not going to understand why you’re
not being listed at the top for coffee shop. So one other quick question, Jesse. You were
talking or you mentioned to me earlier before the show that there’s just certain
Bob: Do you anticipate that expanding at any point in time? Or is it pretty generic at this
Jesse: Yeah. I mean, that’s up to Google. So we definitely can’t speculate to exactly what would
be happening. But you should be jumping into your Google My Business listing, I would
say, at least monthly anyways, just to update photos, do the Google posts and other
things. So while you’re in there, this is a great point, a great question you’re bringing up
is, check for categories, right? You can add multiple categories, and most businesses,
you’re probably going to have the ability to add more categories than you’re going to
have. Actual categories that relate to your business, right?
Jesse: So for truck repair, we just did some quick research for this example. You’ve got truck
repair shop, trailer repair shop, RV repair shop, diesel engine repair service, mechanic
and auto repair. I would even say that auto repair is kind of on the fringe, because we’re
talking here like semi trucks when we say truck repair, not like F-150s and Silverados. So
you have the ability to add more categories than that on your Google My Business page.
But if you’re a truck repair shop, you just add all your categories. You don’t want to add
coffee roaster, if you’re a truck repair shop and start to get too far out there because it’s
a little confusing, with Google.
Jesse: All of this that we’re talking about is about sending the signal to Google about what you
do and what you want to be known for, through your Google My Business category, and
then translating that to your web page. So let’s take this example for the truck repair
shop. You’re going to want to put that as the primary, the first H1 tag, the first headline
on your home page. You’re also going to want to put that in the title tag of your website
because you want Google to know darn well that you’re a truck repair shop first and
foremost about everything else.
Bob: So, Jesse, let me ask you this question. What are the deviations or variations? I mean,
can you say, “Mobile truck repair shop”? Can you say, “Repair shop”?
Bob: How does all that work in Google’s mind?
Jesse: So that’s a good question. For this example, the category that we’re talking about, the
Google My Business category is truck repair shop. You could change it in one way of
saying, “Mobile truck repair shop,” because you still left the truck repair shop in there.
Now, there definitely could be some discussion to be had about the first word in that
title then not being applicable, because you’re inserting mobile. But I would think that
that’s definitely, to an extent, okay, because you’re still saying, “Truck repair shop.”
Jesse: Now likewise, if you put a word … I don’t have one offhand, but after truck repair shop,
same thing. That’s okay. You’re adding a word after truck repair shop, so the truck repair
shop is still in there. Now, if you replaced truck repair center, then that doesn’t count.
You know what I mean?
Jesse: You have to have that Google My Business category to be an exact match somewhere in
that title, title of your website, somewhere in that H1 tag, and you don’t want to overdo
this too. That’s something we should mention. You don’t want to over-optimize. Some
of the recent Google updates that have come out are looking for people who are trying
to spam the system and game the system. You only have to tell them this a couple
times. Google is very smart. The algorithms keep getting smarter, with more
intelligence. They don’t need you to tell them 15 times you’re a truck repair shop. Tell
them where it’s important, you know?
Jesse: And make it the most important thing on your website, and they’re going to get the
message. They know what they’re looking for. So do that. Now, if you want to use that
maybe once in your title tag, once in a H1 tag … You know, maybe throw truck repair
shop in your body, of your text body there a little bit, and maybe an image, but I
wouldn’t go crazy and do too much after that. So that’s with your homepage. Now,
hopefully, you’re in a business where you’ve chosen, like we were just saying, multiple
categories for your business. You definitely want to do that.
Bob: So Jesse, what’s the importance of the choosing … What’s an order? I mean, how do you
go about doing that?
Jesse: On Google My Business?
Jesse: Yeah, so, when you’re in there, you have the option to pick one category to be the
primary category for your business. And like you were saying with the coffee roaster and
coffee shop example, pick coffee shop. That primary Google My Business category is the
one thing you’re telling Google that you do above all else, and that’s the main thing that
you’re putting in your website. Now, from there, you’re going to have three, four or five
or seven additional categories that you select and that are related to your business.
Each one of those should be its own page on your website.
Jesse: We’ve talked before about how many pages, what pages? You know, how do you build
up the rest of your website? Like, for your main navigation menu or things like that.
Take your Google My Business category options into consideration for this. I would
definitely say you’re going to want to link them from your home page, so Google can
chain these together and understand. Let’s say if you’re also a do trailer repair, then this
example here. So you’re a truck repair shop first and foremost. You also fix trailers. I
would have a page probably linked to my main menu that’s a trailer repair shop.
Jesse: Well maybe that’s not what the actual link up on the page says, just because that’s a big
… You know, a lot of text up there and might mess your buttons up. But that name of
that page should be Trailer Repair Shop. The H1 tag on that page should say Trailer
Repair Shop and so on and so forth. You’re going to link those together, and you’re
going to send Google these signals that you do all of these things, and you’re using these
exact Google my Business categories within those pages of your website. And then what
you want to do from there is take your “regular keywords” and try to figure out how
they fit within that.
Jesse: So if you do truck and trailer repair, using the same example, there’s multiple kinds of
trailers. Like what? Flatbeds, refrigerator trailers, right?
Jesse: Things like that. You’re still going to want to create pages and put out content about
those specific trailer repairs. This doesn’t mean you should only put out pages that are
tired to Google My Business categories. But you kind of want to use them to send the
signals to Google of, “Hey, we do trailer repair,” and then, “Here’s the types of trailers
that we do service on,” right? And things like that.
Bob: So is there any specific order? In other words, if I’m a business person, and my least
profitable thing, let’s say, is tire switch-up, do I want again truck repair? Let’s say trailer
repair is the next deal.
Bob: Fuel replenishment, lockouts, whatever.
Jesse: I would say we’ve talked about this a little bit amongst ourselves, and I think we even
touched on it in a previous episode. There’s no definitive proof out there that there is an
order, except for your primary and then all your additional categories. We don’t buy
that and we don’t leave that to chance. It’s definitely rank them top to bottom. Hey, if
we’re wrong in giving this advice, you had to pick them anyways. It’s not that much work
to put them in a ranked order.
Jesse: And on the off chance that that really does have some credence with Google and any
other search engine you’re doing this in — Bing places and things like that. Why the
heck wouldn’t you do it? You know I mean? It really doesn’t take that much more
energy. So definitely, if you’re going to pick multiple categories, put them on ranked
order. When you translate that to your website, also keep that in mind. Let’s say if you
do, again, truck repair, trailer repair and then also RV repair. If you kind of don’t do a
whole lot of RV repair, if it’s not the main thing that you do, maybe you don’t want that
up in your main navigation menu.
Jesse: Maybe put that down on the footer or a link somewhere else, kind of in that same
concept. You give the most relevance and the most exposure to the primary things and
then have everything else fall in line after that. So that pretty much does it for this
week. Nice, short and sweet episode. We’re going to try to keep these episodes a little
more on topic like that. Some of the feedback we’ve been getting from you guys is great
information, maybe a little complicated or a little … gives you too much of a headache
Jesse: We’re going to try to distill these down into smaller bite-sized chunks, kind of like we
said we were from the get-go, but we’ve gotten a little long-winded and trying to mash
too many related topics in any of these episodes. We’d like to know your feedback after
listening to this one. Was it good? Was it too short? Did you want us to expand on some
stuff more? And things like that. So, as always, go to intrycks.com/show. Drop us a line.
Let us know. If you’re liking what you hear here, we’d obviously love to have you leave
us a review. Intrycks.com/itunes. Something new we’ve added in the last few weeks is
we actually have instructions on how to leave a review on iTunes.
Jesse: It wasn’t on there before, and we had a lot of questions. People say, “It’s kind of
complicated. It’s not as easy to leave in a Google review or a Facebook review.”
Bob: Right, right.
Jesse: You got to jump through a few hoops. But we would really appreciate it if you did,
because that lets us know if we’re on the right track, and that’s how you can
communicate back to us. So, really appreciate it.
Bob: Yeah, and feel free to share our podcast with people that you think could benefit from
it, because we’re excited to help people out.
Jesse: Absolutely. And within that, sharing kind of triggers me about social media. And
something I definitely got to mention that I almost forgot about here is, we are kicking
off our Facebook Live reviews. If you’re not following us on Facebook right now, we’d
appreciate if you can go on out there and do it. Facebook.com/intrycks. We’re going to
be launching a series where we do live reviews of people’s websites. So, if you have
questions about your website, you can always reach out to us. But if you wanted to
participate in a live Facebook format to do that, we’re going to be doing that.
Jesse: So if you’re interested in that, check it out. Go to intrycks.com/live, and you can let us
know that you specifically are interested. We’ll reach out to you to coordinate the time
and get that set up, so you’re going to be available as well to be on that live session. If
you guys just want to follow us and lurk and not maybe participate in those things, but
kind of just see how we’re going to break these things down, again, go out to Facebook
and make sure you’re following us, so you can be alerted when we do get live. All right.
That about does it for this week. Appreciate it everybody, and we’ll see you next week.
Bob: Bye now.
Jesse: All right, everybody. Hope you enjoyed that episode and got some tips there that you
can take action on. I want to read a review for this week. We got a great five-star review
from SDPS Davis. “Actionable information from the very first episode.” Goes on to say,
“I’m a piano teacher. I researched music and education. I don’t have time to research
how to market my studio or optimize my website. That’s why I’m so glad to find this
podcast. As I was listening to the very first episode, I was able to take action and get my
studio on the map, literally Google Maps. Thanks guys.” That’s awesome. Love to hear
Jesse: Our first episode was a very important episode, so was number two. Both dealing with
Google My Business. So super excited you’re able to find some value there, take some
action, get yourself literally on the map, and hopefully, your business is benefiting from
it already. So, everybody else, if you want to leave us a review, we would really
appreciate it. It lets us know we’re doing the right thing, let’s us know we’re bringing
value and that you’re enjoying it. So, intrycks.com/itunes. You’ll find what you need
there, and we hope to hear from you.
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