The cliché that a picture is worth a thousand words has proven true over many years and across many mediums – especially in local search strategy for businesses. Pictures are so effective because a large part of the human brain is devoted to visual processing. In fact, studies have shown that we can recognize a familiar image in just 100 milliseconds. When you consider how difficult it is to capture your target audience's attention in today's short-attention-span world, it's easy to see how pictures can help you do it quickly and effectively.
Using images is just as important as using keywords in helping drive traffic to your website. Finding the right ones – in addition to using those specific to your business – is easier than you may think. Try using Google's Images search; this is Google's own images index where it keeps billions of pictures. Although using these is an often-overlooked strategy, they can drive traffic to websites as people search for examples of all sorts of products, activities, services, etc. More than 10% of all Google searches are for images and daily page views of Google images number more than a billion.
When you use unique, quality pictures that help tell your brand's story and provide visual cues for location and service, you can convert more customers and improve discoverability through image searches. In addition, geotagging each picture is essential. Geotagging is the process of storing the latitude and longitude of your current location with your pictures so that the data is picked up by those using devices for local searches of businesses to patronize.
For businesses that have a Google My Business (GMB) profile, pictures play an exceptionally important role in optimizing their local search presence. Google My Business is a directory that Google created; it presents results on branded and generic keyword searches of your business and for keywords related to products and services you provide. To have the best chance of your listing grabbing someone's attention, the following images are key:
- Logo - Help your customers recognize your business on Google by including your logo. For businesses that have their basic information (phone number, hours, etc.), the Business Profile portion of the listing will highlight the logo.
- Cover photo - Add a cover photo to the top of the profile that best represents your business. This photo, like your logo, goes a long way to establish your brand's identity.
- Additional photos - Add additional photos to highlight features of your business that customers consider when making purchasing decisions. Your business will look best on Google if you add category-specific photos. The pictures you add to your profile can also help differentiate your business from others on Google.
Types of business-specific photos to include in your GMB profile:
- Exterior photos - These help customers recognize your business as they approach from different directions.
- Interior photos - These help your customers get a feel for the ambiance and décor of your business.
- Product photos - These should be representative of your products or of your popular products to give customers a better understanding of the kinds of goods you offer.
- Team photos - These are important to show the personal side of your business.
The use of similar pictures and videos on social media and across other local listings profiles also delivers results in several powerful ways:
- Pictures call attention to your profile and posts.
- On social media, photos and videos help your audience remember your message.
- Using the same types of images across several social media platforms and local listings profiles will help define your brand and establish a brand that customers will recognize.
DAS Group can assist your business with ensuring photos are part of your local search strategy. Contact us today!