If you are an automotive business that services a local community, showing up on page one on Google is critical since more than 90% of consumer that perform a search on Google WILL NOT go to page two to find your business. One way your business can improve its chances of appearing on page one is in the Google 3-pack, or whatever it is called this week. There are a handful of factors that Google uses to decide what sites to show when a person searches for a local business.

Your Google My Business Page
While there is a lot of noise about your Google My Business page, linked to Google+, going away, for now it's still a critical piece of the local SEO puzzle that feeds Google Maps and where online reviews on your Google My Business page continue to be a local SEO ranking factor. Another reason why your Google My Business page is so important is the presence of Google Maps data in mobile searches! eMarketing Sherpas has some clients in the auto body shop industry that receive more than 30 calls per month from the mobile version of their Google My Business page! So, if you want your business to be found when people search for companies like yours on Google, you MUST Claim and Optimize Your Google My Business page first.

Locate and Claim Your Google My Business Page
Based on our experience we find that there's a good chance you don't even know you have a Google My Business page and you don't remember setting it up. So the first thing you should do is here to check and see if your page exists: https://support.google.com/business/answer/2911778?hl=en. Another potential issue you might find is that you may have inadvertently set up multiple Google My Business pages and have a bit of a mess to unwind - Here's a tool to check if you have multiple pages: http://www.michaelcottam.com/google-business-page-finder/. If you find that you have duplicate listings, you may be able to merge them by following these instructions: https://support.google.com/business/answer/4669139?hl=en. Finally we've found that the best way to contact and communicate with the Google My Business team is via Twitter. You can send your questions and requests here: https://twitter.com/GoogleSmallBiz.

Optimizing Your Google My Business Page - The Basics
Now that you have found and claimed your Google My Business page it's time to optimize it! Your optimized Google My Business Page should include the following:
• Your Company's Name, Address, and Phone EXACTLY the same as it appears on your website.
• The correct categories - i.e., Auto Body Shop, Auto Repair Shop, Etc.
• A keyword rich description.
• Your company website URL included in the profile.
• A few relevant images.
Google offers some pretty good tips for setting your Google My Business page up the way they suggest here: https://www.google.com/business/resources/.

Advanced Google My Business Optimization
Here are some other ways you can optimize your Google My Business Page;
• Update your images with fresh, hi-resolution images. Google will compress them as needed, but they will look much better. You should feature a hi-res logo, exterior shots, interior shots, staff and behind the scenes work.
• Consider adding a Google Street View Tour of your business. Google is using this as it adds an incredible verification and trust element for them.

If you have questions about your Google My Business Page or need some help cleaning up your company's local search presence give eMarketing Sherpas a call at 888.377.2661 or send them an email at sales@emarketingsherpas.com and they will insure your business is properly and professionally presented on more than 50 local search sites, including your Google My Business, YELP, Bing and more than 50 others for less than $40.00 per month! Although it isn't very complicated to rank locally, it does take time and requires some knowledge of keywords and content writing. And as they say, time is money.

eMarketing Sherpas created the Local SEO Sherpa Service as a complete and ongoing "we do it for you" service so you can be assured the more technical local ranking factors are taken care of. Either way, if you keep chugging along with these tips, when someone says "Google that" they'll find your business. For more information contact eMarketing Sherpas at 858.5447.8697 and visit www.emarketingsherpas.com.