Google Maps, Google My Business, Google Ads, Google Reviews, Google, Google, Google – it doesn’t even sound like a word anymore right?
Whether you already have an established digital presence or are just starting out, you probably gulp when facing the large Google monster octopus with all of its tentacles as different Google tools you need to master… don’t worry, we did too when first starting out!
Of course our metaphor makes Google sound more daunting than tackling a real octopus (which.. can you imagine? Madison can #scubalife), but the presence of intimidation when trying to master all of their services is real. And the reality is you do need to face each of these “tentacles” to really help your online presence, and therefore your small business, succeed.
In this article we hope to explain some of their main services in an easy, digestible way to provide clarity and calmness when deciding to implement their tools. We won’t cover all things Google – because let’s be honest that would take a book (and I’m sure there’s already one out there). We will cover the tools that we use for our clients and how they could help you, too.
As a general outline, all of these services are FREE! Yes, free.99. That being said, they do take practice to master, and of course take time to learn how to implement for your specific business use. If you have the time and energy to explore these tools for your small business, we hope this guide helps!
If this just overwhelms you more – schedule a free chat with us to see how we can help.
Google My Business, now manageable on Google Maps instead of Google Business Profile Manager, is the lifeline of your online presence in terms of Google’s sake. This snippet, which appears in the top (yes, top!) right corner of Google, when someone searches your business, or something related to your business if you’re #blessed. This is imperative to have for any size business, teeny tiny or as big as Google themselves.
Your profile will show all the important contact information for your business such as name, hours, services or products offered, address, and more. You can even add photos and create posts to let customers know about a sale or what’s new. This pulls up on Google Search AND Google Maps; double the platforms means double the fun (and fine, double the views). This is so so soooo important to not only have but keep up to date. This is one of the easiest ways to help or hurt your business depending on how accurate everything is on your profile.
The best part? It includes a sharable link that takes people right to a review form. It’s literally never been easier to ask and receive for reviews, so TBH you have no excuse.
Google Ads are the best way to begin your journey of inorganic marketing.
With options for Smart campaigns or fully customizable campaigns, it gives you the ability to advertise to a wide variety of people, beginners and experts alike.
The types of campaigns available give ample opportunity to help every type of business succeed. Find the budget that best suits your needs, do your research, and test to see what works! Always always always run more than one ad and don’t be afraid to get creative and a little wild.
Along with Google Analytics, this is one of our favorite tools that we use on the daily. This is more specific to websites but cannot be overlooked. Google Search Console gives you the technical insights behind your website’s vitals.
Never will we ever have an invalid or unindexed page thanks to this tool. Plus, the performance review reports are always helpful for those quick ‘how are we doing’ check-ins.
Ahh, Google Drive. An oldie but a goodie.
This tool is great for managing any and all content you need to share and store. We use this with our own clients! You’re able to upload photos, mockups, etc. without losing quality.
Utilize the folders to stay organized between clients, projects, and topics and thank us later!
This tool allows you to search, dissect and compare certain trends among Google Searches.
It really pulls open any blinders on what keywords are being searched versus not searched. Plus, you can filter the results by geographic location, time range, category, and type of search!
Google Trends is extremely helpful in determining which keywords and meta descriptions you want to use for each page of your website.
This one usually flies under the radar but it is not to miss!
When dealing with the performance of your website- speed is everything.
This free tool provides a massive amount of data on your speed insights, giving you an intuitive 1-100 score overall, along with specifics on Time to Interactive, Cumulative Layout Shift and Speed Index. Along with the data, it gives you suggestions on what to improve to raise the score for both desktop and mobile users.
Ok we know that was a lot, and Google definitely doesn’t sound like a word now! Again, these are just a few of the tools they offer, but we spend the majority of time for our clients using these, as they have tremendous power – when used properly – to accelerate your website performance, general online presence and small business growth.
Another key thing to note is that the correct use of these tools is part of your SEO strategy. Search Engine Optimization is exactly what it sounds like: doing everything you can to match searchers’ intents and appear as a result for them. While it involves more than just Google tools, the services listed above are an extremely important factor of your overall SEO plan.
You can face the monster octopus by yourself if you dedicate a lot of time and energy learning and practicing the tools. Or, as with any trained skill, you can leave it to the professionals to manage! At jo + leigh marketing, we take care of Google integration and SEO for you.
As always, we hope this article helped – we would love to hear your thoughts! And of course we would love to meet with you to chat about your business and how we can help.
Keep creative friends!
Anna Jo + Madison Leigh