Do Images Boost Your Google Local Listings?
Should you spend the time and effort to add photos to your Google My Business listing? Yes, absolutely.
This question is easy to definitively answer because we see the data from Google My Business Insights across our client base. Businesses that add more images get more image views, customer engagement, and the potential for improved location rankings. The chart below presents the results of one client who made a strategic decision to add more photos to each location. The response from customers was instant.
Free Advertising from Google
While it varies for different industry verticals and even from client to client, we see as many as 100 views per image per day. For large organizations with hundreds of locations, this translates into millions of image views each month by the most engaged of all consumers. Remember, all of this engagement with your brand is hosted on Google and is absolutely free.
A picture says a thousand words, yet many stores neglect to include images in their Google My Business listing. Customers today like to do their online legwork before visiting a business and actively look for photos.
Which images should you add? You may be surprised to know that just about anything related to your business makes sense. Outside signage is always great to help customers easily recognize your location from the street. Inside view photos also record great engagement. Pick whatever is relevant for your business, from the reception desk at a dentist’s office to the elliptical stations at a gym, to the daily lunch specials at a local BBQ joint.
You Don’t Need Professional Photography
While big, beautiful photos of your business or product are helpful, they aren’t necessary for most circumstances. Google presents images as user-generated content, so mobile phone quality is often welcomed by customers looking for a “real” view of your business. Don’t let budgets or lack of equipment hold you back. Get out your phone and start taking photos of anything that will help customers engage with your brand – and don’t let your competitors beat you to it.
Share Any Compelling Differences
Does your business have a distinguishing characteristic that can be demonstrated via photography? Take for example the Google listing sow below for a search of “gyms in Oklahoma City”. The gym only has three photos, but smartly includes an image of their full-sized lap pool. This isn’t a typical amenity for a gym and for some people this one photo will cause this location to leap to the top a searcher’s consideration set.
Don’t “Set and Forget”. Test, and Then Test Again
Take a look at the following local result for “great ribs in Dallas”. Two companies choose to present their signature dishes. One presents its logo and one presents a photo of the interior. Which is the best approach? You may have a personal opinion but the best approach is to test out what images creates the most engagement. For each appearance in a local search result, which images drives the highest level of clicks on driving directions, phone numbers, or the website?
Again, its Free
This is some of the best free real estate available on Google. Every business that relies on local search should maximize the opportunities across all of their locations.