Google My Business (GMB) is one of the most important sources of new leads for self storage businesses.
We’re at a stage now where the majority of operators have realised this, and most will have claimed and optimised their listings. As the competition in this area increases, it’s important to do everything you can to stand out and stay ahead of your competitors.
One of the ways you can do this, is by utilising the Google My Business Products section to display your services and make your listing stand out further, as can be seen in this example:
It can be quite an effective tactic when done correctly, and there aren’t too many businesses taking advantage of it right now. In this post we’ll help you understand what the Products section is, and how you can do a similar thing on your Google My Business profile.
The products section vs the services section
First up, let’s have a look at the difference between ‘products’ and ‘services’, as the two areas are commonly confused.
Services is the area most of you will be familiar with, and this is where you select the service category (and subcategories) for you business.
It will look something like this when viewed on a mobile:
This will show the different services you offer and it’s an important section to have this filled in (most of you will already have done this).
One of the downsides of services is that they basically never displayed on desktop so are more of a mobile feature.
The Products section on the other hand is not as commonly used by self storage companies. You may see it displayed under the GMB listings such as the example seen below.
The whole goal of products is to help businesses display a curated showcase of their products.
Products added to your profile will be displayed below your listing, making it more eye catching and increasing click through rates.
By adding your services to this section, you can display services in a more prominent way than by adding them in the services section as not only will they show on both desktop and mobile, but you also get images, a description and a link to the relevant page, something that you don’t get with the services section.
Are you allowed to add services as products?
Right now there is nothing in the guidelines that is preventing adding services in the products section. We have also never seen nor heard of a business being flagged for this.
However, considering Google has a separate section for services it seems possible that in the future they will decide that adding services in the products section isn’t a legitimate use of this feature, and will prevent businesses from doing this.
Until that point there doesn’t seem to be an issue with doing this, but obviously use it sparingly and in a way that improves user experience.
How to add products to your GMB profile
Getting access to the products feature is dependent on your primary listing category – which for most people reading this is going to be “Self-storage facility”.
If you don’t have access, you may have the wrong category selected, or the products feature may not be available for your main category.
To access the product editor simply log into your GMB profile and click on the ‘products’ link in the left hand navigation as seen here:
You can then proceed to add your services as products.
For each product (or service) that you add, you will need to provide the following:
- A product name (max 58 characters)
- A category (choose from an existing category or create a new one)
- An image (1,200 x 900 recommended)
In addition to these, there are a few optional extras that you can add, when it makes sense to do so:
- A description of the product (max 1,000 characters)
- Price, or price range
- A call to action button, such as ‘Order online’ or ‘Learn More’, that links to a page of your choosing.
Points to keep in mind when adding products
When adding products there are a few things to be aware of:
- It’s recommended that you add a call to action button that links to your product or service. A price, or price range may be relevant when adding products that you can buy, such as boxes, or packing accessories, but for services you may want to leave this off.
- The order in which your products are displayed is based on which product was the last one you edited. So if you make any edits you’ll have to bear in mind that this will affect the arrangement.
- You can have separate product categories, so if you have a box shop (actual products that you are selling), and also want to add services in the products section, you can have these in separate categories.
- You should ensure you keep your product details updated to match what appears on your website. If the service changes, or the price changes, be sure to update the relevant information to ensure everything is correct.
Hopefully that’s helped to give you a better understanding of GMB products, and how they can be used to showcase your services.
The chances are that very few of your competitors will be using this approach, so it’s a great way to get an edge over the competition before this approach becomes more common.
As always, if you have any questions please don’t hesitate to get in touch!