Schema Markup for Google Maps Marketing

schema logoSchema Markup is a great way to help Google determine what a business is about, every Google Maps Marketing expert should know how and where to apply the code on their client’s websites. In this article we will explain how to generate a schema markup code for your business and how to apply it to your website.

What is Schema Markup?

Schema is a Markup language that is intended for search engines to display websites information better on Google’s search engine result page (SERP). For example if you have a webpage that has reviews on it and you want the search engine to display rich snippet reviews, you would use schema markup for those reviews to appear on the SERP (which is know to increase CTR).Example of schema markup

How Does Schema Markup Influence a Local Business?

In the case of a local business that has a physical address, it’s very important to let Google’s search engine know exactly what the business is about, where it is located and how is can be contacted. Google ranks local businesses on what they determine the business is about and with schema markup, we can define our business to Google avoiding any confusion. Google needs to be sure that the Name Address and Phone number (NAP) of a business is listed correctly/consistently on the site, as well as other sites that mention the business.

How to properly Add Schema Markup for your Local Business?

Schema markup language can be a bit complicated for a beginner level programmer. We found an easy to use schema markup generator that will simplify the process for you, here is the site: http://www.microdatagenerator.com/local-business-schema/. We recommend adding the generated Schema code to the footer of your site. If you have more then one location, be sure to add all of them to the footer of your site. Schema markup can be added directly to a sites HTML code.

Importance Of Google Reviews

Google reviews are extremely important for visibility in today’s world. If your business has no reviews, chances are you’re not getting any local search traffic from Google or any other search directory.

Why is Local Search Important?

Why Google ReviewsExperienced searchers are looking for reliable businesses and everyday searchers are becoming more experienced.
20 years ago internet search did not exist, today it’s all that exists. Not only do we use it for search, we use it for all types of communication whether we are looking for products, services, lessons, entertainment, news, history, science, we always resort to the internet.

Internet use to be harder to access, it seems like ages ago when we had to log into a computer “wait” for our modem to call/connect & “wait” a few minutes for an email to get sent (remember the exciting days of “You’ve Got Mail”).

Today we have internet connection in our pockets that is fast enough to send an email while taking on the phone or take a video and share it to all your friends while talking on a phone. The closer the internet gets to us the more dependent we become on it, mobile search is growing extremely fast and will surpass computer searches in a blink of an eye. When you search from your mobile phone, your location is used to give you relevant results.

Google Reviews for Local Businesses

If you’re a local business and set up your Google Places listing it doesn’t mean you will appear when someone searches for your business type… In fact, chances are very unlikely that your business will, unless you optimize your listing with Google Maps Marketing. Even if your listing does appear in position “A” on the Google when the most specific term for your business is searched, if your competitors have more/better reviews they will stick out and attract the majority share of users.Google Reviews

How to get more Google Reviews

This is what separates a good business from the rest, going the extra mile. Keep in mind, in every industry there’s a different type of demographic to please. The best way to get reviews is by experimenting, ask for a review and see what type of feedback you get. If you really take good care of your clients they are likely to leave you a review.

In some industries it might be more challenging to get reviews, in this case ask the client for their email address and send them a link to leave you a review. In the message try to be personable, use common ground and let the client know that this is important to your business, get straight to the point.

email example:

Dear Client,

Thank you very much for your business,

(optional: insert warm up here). We always aim for our services to exceed your expectations and I was hoping you can leave us a review on (insert site here with a link to the review page). I know your time is valuable and I truly appreciate you taking the time. This is important for my business in many ways.

Sincerely,
Name
Business
Phone
Email

Not sure how to warm up to your clients… Usually getting to know them outside of business talk can help you achieve this, you can bring up any common ground, do they like sports?  do they have kids? do they have a nice car? Once you get a client to like you they may refer you to a friend or two, once you get a client to leave you a review all the searches to follow will see it and Google will reward you for it.  That’s right if you get a lot of good reviews Google will want to help more people find your business. However, Google is very skeptical because many people try to game the system with fake reviews, which is a bad idea.

What does Google Look For in Reviews?

Google MagGoogle is looking for real reviews from real people, but they want a variation of reviews from other review sites as well, a natural progression of reviews. Google doesn’t want businesses to offer anything in exchange for a review, this would be considered violating Google guidelines and Google will punish you for it. Getting flagged by Google is not fun and can take month, even years to get it removed.  As the expression goes don’t bite the hand that feeds you!

 

There are many ways to earn Google Reviews and I would love to hear some of your past experiences in the comments below.