If you’ve ever searched for a business online, you’ve experienced Google My Business. Google My Business (GMB) is every dealership’s most important secondary website. Why do I say this? 100% of the time you search for a dealership on Google, their GMB appears at the top of the search results page. Think of GMB as the dealerships white/yellow page listing on the internet. Best of all…it’s free!
Now many dealers already know this, and are paying some attention to their GMB listing, primarily as it relates to Google Reviews. These dealerships use companies like Podium or Reputation.com to help manage their online reputation and respond to the occasional negative review. However, there is much more regular work that needs to be done on a dealership’s GMB page. We recommend GMB care and feeding weekly, or at the very least monthly. Part of the reason dealers need to regularly revisit the GMB page is that Google has been fairly active in launching new features.
Dealerships should recognize that adding content to their GMB page will feed directly into Google’s Knowledge Graph. What is a Knowledge Graph? It is everything that Google knows about a particular dealership, for instance what products and services they offer, what geographic areas they service, etc. Here is a list of four (4) of the most commonly ignored secret ways to feed Google’s Knowledge Graph, and how dealerships can unlock all of the free goodness that GMB has to offer. Each of these four are located in the main “Info” tab of the Google My Business admin page:
1. Business Description – While this may seem like basic blocking and tackling, I am shocked by how many dealership GMB Descriptions are blank. I recently audited a few dozen new dealership GMB listings and 90% of their business descriptions were empty. This is an easy fix, and a good time to revisit the dealership’s "Why Buy?". Additionally, since the business description will feed information directly to Google’s Knowledge Graph, it is critical to include (but not overstuff) some keywords in the description.
2. Categories – These are predetermined descriptors a dealership can choose to properly categorize their business. Keep in mind a dealership can choose up to 10 categories, and the order of the category listing is important. A new car dealership should start with their branded category (i.e. “Chevrolet Dealer”), and then follow that with 9 other appropriate categories. Here is an example of the 10 categories a Chevrolet dealer might choose (in order): Chevrolet dealer, Car dealer, Used car dealer, Truck dealer, Tire Shop, Brake Shop, Car repair and maintenance, Car service, Muffler shop, Battery store.
3. Services – Once a dealer has chosen the proper categories, they can then go into the “Services” section to choose services within each category. These services are created by Google based on the categories that were chosen. For instance, the above category of “Car repair and maintenance” allows the dealer to choose service such as “Air & Cabin Filter”, “Body & Trim”, “Air conditioning”, and so on. This allows Google to know more about the more granular fixed operations services offered at the store.
4. Amenities – This is another area where Google creates potential data points, but it is up to the dealership to approve them. Google automatically creates various Amenities based on their Knowledge Graph about the dealership. During periodic review of the GMB page, the dealership should approve any amenity categories that Google has suggested. Keep in mind that a dealer can only approve suggested amenities, they cannot add custom ones. Typical amenities Google might create would include: “24-hour service drop-off”, “Certified factory-trained technicians”, or “Free cost estimates.”
The amount of effort outlined in this article is minimal, and the impact for a dealership is significant. Dealerships should assign an internal resource to care for and feed their Google My Business on a weekly or monthly basis. Shoot me an email with any questions or additional ideas!
To learn how Generations Digital can help your dealership Google My Business efforts, visit our website at www.generationsdigital.com