Back in the day, businesses relied on services such as the Yellow Pages for their business presence, but with the growth of internet users over the past two decades, businesses have had to adjust so they can leave a footprint on the internet.
Private investigation businesses, like all others, have benefited from being just a search result away from getting prospective new clients, rather than waiting for a lengthy search from flipping pages.
Google My Business is one of the tools that, if used correctly, can aid a PI business to get started, grow and stay afloat. So, can Google My Business do for your PI business? Let’s take a look!
What is Google My Business?
Google My Business is an ensuite tool offered by Google that helps you create a smart business presence on the internet. Through this tool, you can create a business profile, see customer engagement data, get insights to search results pertaining to your business and much more to help with the management of your online business presence and activity.
Getting Your PI Business to Stand Out
If you’re just getting started with your private investigation business, you will need to get your online business presence set up as soon as started. If you don’t have the slightest idea about SEO and rankings, Google My Business is the best way to get started. This is why:
1. Free Business Profile for Private Investigators
Whether you’re working solo or have set up a private investigation agency, you have to get a business profile set up on Google as soon as you have registered your business. This is because your business profile will help with your online ranking.
Setting up your business profile on Google My Business can significantly help your ranking so that your business has a chance to appear on Google’s top search results in relation to your business.
To help your ranking, use keywords that are relevant to your business in every description or tag line as you set up your online business profile. It can take time for your business to come on the top results, but if you follow the next key pieces of advice you will be able to have your business on the first page of Google within days!
2. Presence on Google Maps
One of the key benefits for PI businesses is physical presence shown on Google Maps. Once your business’ physical presence has been confirmed and is up and running, your business will be visible to prospective clients through features such as “near me,” which will help people to know you are a legitimate business.
Now, if your PI business doesn’t have a physical location and runs from home or operates online with investigators in several points of the state or nation, you can still register your profile with a certain location by setting up a service area.
However, Google’s algorithms are changing constantly and they do update their guidelines regarding a business’ location. So, try to make sure you use a legitimate business address if you do have one, or don’t lie by using a P.O. Box or UPS Store location address to get around address requirements. By trying to cheat the system, Google could punish your business listing and put you on a black list to not allow your business to show up on top search results, or at all.
3. Claim Your Business Listing
If you had already previously posted your business on Google Maps, or someone else did it for you, it’s possible to claim a business listing as your own so that you can begin to manage it through Google My Business.
Especially if it was not you who initially posted your business on Google, you’ll want to get a hold of the listing so that you can manage your private investigator business’ profile so that it meets your standards and reflects your business image accurately.
Once you have claimed your business listing online, be sure to add pictures of your business, or services you may offer, update your business operating hours and your contact information, so that prospect clients can get in touch with you.
4. Key Business Insights
Google My Business is a great tool for PI businesses because it helps investigators to visualize and understand where their audience is mostly concentrated. This is data that all businesses need so that they can see the growth of their exposure online.
The insights provided by this tool are so detailed that you can see the demographics of your audience, so that you can move forward with other services, such as Google Ads, to push your business’ online presence and advertising even further.
5. Customer Communication Management
Setting up a profile on Google My Business helps prospective customers to connect with your business by booking appointments, leaving reviews and getting in touch with you by phone, email, chat or by visiting you in your physical address if you happen to have one.
Most people nowadays believe that social media is the strongest way of communicating with an audience, however, Google is still to this day the top search engine used in the world. So, by combining social media presence with Google My Business, you will have a strong online business presence.
The Best Ingredient is Time
Getting your niche as a private investigation business running on the top search results online can take a couple of months, however, it’s important not to get discouraged and maintain continuous activity on your profile. Once you have set up your profile, don’t make the mistake of forgetting to update your profile continuously, so that you can reap the full benefits offered by this great free tool offered by Google.