Google is the most powerful force on the internet for businesses. It pretty much holds your advertising and marketing solely in its hands. The internet was a game-changer for small and large businesses alike, specifically because it leveled the playing field and allowed anyone to get ahead if they worked hard and were savvy about how they gained exposure. Someone who sat in a home office in their basement was just as powerful as someone behind the desk of a Fortune 500 company. Things have changed over time, though, and Google has locked down many of the ways that the internet provided “free” advertising. However, the good news is that if you pivot and stay creative and in the know, there are many tips and tricks that can help you get ahead without having to break the bank! Try these from our digital marketing agency!

Maximize Your Google My Business Listing

Every once in a while Google throws businesses a bone, and one of them is the Google My Business listing. Every business that is registered on the internet and lists a location will get a Google My Business listing. If you aren’t sure whether you have one, all you have to do is Google yourself. Quite likely, the listing is sitting and waiting for you to claim it. Claiming it requires nothing more than proof of ownership. Yes, it is completely free! 

What Does Google My Business Do?

Any digital marketing agency will tell you Google My Business is a free listing that is similar to the Yellow Pages. Even better, it is way more powerful. When someone does an organic search for your particular location, if you are active and you have the right information, your business will pop up. According to statistics, 91% of all users say that they use search engines to find what they are looking for, and 46% of those searches are looking for local services and products. If you are active on Google My Business, that is a very large boost to your exposure if you handle it correctly!

What Is the Google 3-Pack and Why Do You Want to Be in It?

The Google Local 3-pack is a condensed version of listings that show up when someone searches locally for a product or service. 93% of all search results locally are guided to the Google 3-pack, which is dictated by a mobile-friendly design. This means that another easy way to gain exposure is to make sure that your website is mobile-responsive. Even more astonishing, 72% of consumers will visit the store that they find on a local search that is within five miles of where they are. That is why being visible by managing your Google My Business is so critical. Or, even better, having our digital marketing agency do it!

Ratings and Reviews Are Everything!

Your Google My Business listing is critical to manage because it contains information that the viewer needs such as the company name, address, and business hours, and it also contains one of the most critical tools that consumers use to guide their purchasing decisions: ratings and reviews. Online reviews help to sway up to 67% of your customer base. When self-reported, people say that online reviews and ratings are as influential as a referral from a friend or family. That is both good and bad, depending on your ratings and reviews, which is why staying on top of them is so critical!

Solicit Reviews to Increase Your Visibility and Favorability

One of the best ways to enhance your overall visibility is through ratings and reviews. People are often willing to provide a review when they have had a good experience. Only, however, if they are asked and aware that they can even do it. If you have a system for soliciting reviews and ratings from your customers, it can make a significant difference in your visibility and favorability. But on the other hand, if not maintained correctly, it can be a disadvantage if you aren’t monitoring what your customers are saying. If you are going to ask for your customers’ feedback, make sure that you continually watch and ensure that your rating is what you want it to be.

Appearances Are All About Averages!

Another reason that it is important to solicit reviews and ratings is because some people are hard to please. If you do have someone who leaves a less-than-positive star rating, then the more favorable ones you have, the better. For instance, if you only have three reviews, one poor rating can tank your reputation. If you have 1000 reviews, one poor review will not affect you as much. People often will not take the time to read a poor review and see that it was just one disgruntled customer. They will likely just go with a more favorable reputation from a competitor. 

Always Respond and Be Active on Your Google My Business

Even if you maintain a good star rating, it is important to respond to poor reviews. There will be viewers who will want to know specifically what the consumer’s complaint was. If you take the time to address the situation and provide solutions for the consumer who had a poor experience, those who read the reviews will find you to be trustworthy and responsive. If you ignore it and don’t acknowledge it, it can decrease your credibility.

Keep Everything Consistent

Although Google My Business is managed by the business owner, customers do have the option to post images and other content related to the business. Make sure to monitor your listing as you would your social media posts and comments. It is critical to maintain consistency in your content across various mediums and platforms. Your Google My Business listing is a place where everything comes together for a consumer. Make sure you are putting your best foot forward at all times!


Although Google has done a pretty good job locking down on advertising to make small businesses pay for exposure, there are still ways that you can enhance your advertising on the internet without paying for it. The key is to allocate your resources to make sure that you are using the full power of Google. Also that you are presenting your business in a good light to increase consumers who will choose you locally. If you are struggling with your online marketing and advertising, we are here to take the reins. At A Digital Media Company, we have all the tools and industry knowledge necessary for success. Contact us today!