It may seem like there are an overwhelming amount of digital platforms required for the success of your business these days. Between Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, TikTok…how can one keep track of which social media networks to prioritize, and which to dismiss? For contractors, it can be hard to tell.
While many of the social networks can be helpful in posting pictures of your completed work or establishing a brand identity that stands out from other contractors, there's one online platform that is actually crucial in keeping your small business afloat: Google+. Here's a quick explainer on what Google+ is, and why creating a MyBusiness profile on Google is a must for anyone in construction.
What Is Google+ and Why Should I Use It?
In short, Google+ is Google's own social network. All you need to sign up is a Gmail account (which you might already have!). Just like Facebook or Instagram, you can have a personal or a business Google+ account - and for your contracting profile, you'll want to use a Gmail account connected with your existing business.
It functions much like most other social networks you've interacted with in the past decade. You can post photos and updates from your site projects, so you can easily replicate what you're likely already posting on other social platforms. The important takeaway is that many social media experts believe that using Google+ regularly will boost your spot in Google's algorithm, which will help your discoverability with clients. Though Google doesn't give the details on their algorithm, most argue that a business with a strong Google+ account will have a better shot at showing up higher in the results!
How Else It Can Help Your Business
Beyond these guesses, however, there's concrete proof that a Google+ account will make an impact on a customer's choice when looking at your business. When setting up your account, you'll fill in details like your website, hours, photos and more. Then, when people search for business like yours on maps or in Google (i.e., they type in "contractor near me"), this information will show up on your profile, adding credibility to your first impression and giving customers everything they need to know, right at their fingertips.
Within Google+ you can also correspond directly with customers, answer questions that people frequently ask and receive reviews from customers. You'll even get access to new advertising options within Google+ once you've gotten over 1,000 followers.
How to Get Started
If you want to stand out from competing construction businesses, a strong Google+ MyBusiness profile can give you the advantage. So: where to start? As mentioned, you'll need to create an account. Then, you'll want to select the type of page that best fits your business (there are several options, like Local Business, or Product).
You'll have to fill out some basic information about your business, like your website, and upload a photo. Choose something showcasing a build in action, or consulting with clients over plans, as opposed to a static logo, to connect with people. You'll also need to add a short, succinct summary of what you offer.
From here, you'll have a basic page! As with LinkedIn or Facebook, you should invest some time sharing updates, interacting with others and garnering customer reviews before you put any marketing budget behind promoting your page. Try to check in on your Google+ regularly and encourage customers who hire you to leave a review. Over time, people who search for "contractor" or "construction" will be drawn to your robust profile.