How to Leverage Google’s Helpful Content Update and Google My Business for Your Business

Leverage Google's Helpful Content Update and My Business to boost your online strategy, enhancing visibility and customer engagement through quality content and local insights.
Jessica Daniels

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In today’s digital age, businesses continue to compete for consumer attention more than ever. Staying updated with the latest trends and strategies can make the difference between getting lost in the crowd and becoming a standout leader. With 55% more website visitors drawn to companies that maintain an active blog and 67% more leads generated by B2B companies that do so, it’s evident that digital strategies aren’t just buzzwords anymore – they’re crucial tools for business growth.

One might wonder, how are businesses staying relevant and top choice for consumers? Google’s Helpful Content Update, which was released at the end of last year, and Google My Business are two very useful tools that all businesses should leverage. 

Google’s Helpful Content Update

At its core, this update revolves around promoting content that truly answers the users’ questions. Gone are the days where keyword-stuffed articles (words or phrases that people would use looking for solutions to their problem) and shallow content could dominate search results. Now, the spotlight is on deep industry knowledge, relevance, and genuine value. 

This shift not only benefits users but also businesses; 60% of consumers say that reading relevant content from a brand influences their perception positively. When content truly meets a user’s needs, it naturally builds trust, loyalty, and can even prompt purchases, with 61% of online consumers in the U.S. basing their buying decisions on blog recommendations.

Google My Business

While content is the bedrock of online visibility, local search is the beacon that guides potential customers to brick-and-mortar businesses. Google My Business facilitates this by allowing companies to manage their online presence across Google, including Search and Maps. For a small business, this means being seen by customers the very moment they search for the services you offer.

Now, consider a small fencing company, “FenceCrafters,” which has relied on word-of-mouth referrals and local advertising. Before embracing these Google updates, they might receive sporadic inquiries and be invisible to a vast online audience actively searching for fencing solutions. Their expertise, honed over years, remains unknown by a digital audience.

However, post-implementation of these updates, FenceCrafters could be a different story. By sharing blog posts that address common fencing questions, discussing material choices, maintenance tips, or installation methods, they cater to Google’s Helpful Content criteria. Pair this with an optimized Google My Business profile, complete with customer reviews, photos of completed projects and regular updates, suddenly FenceCrafters isn’t just a local business – it’s a local favorite.

In essence, these tools aren’t about rewriting the story of a business, but bridging the gap between your business’ industry knowledge and expertise, and the customers looking for the solution that you offer. As a business, it’s time to ask the question: “Are you tired of missing out on opportunities?”

With the importance and potential found within the power of utilizing these digital tools for your business, let’s explore in detail what Google’s Helpful Content Update entails. We’ll also look into Google My Business and why it’s becoming a must-have for local businesses (which is you), and how you can get the most for your business’ growth by implementing these two very beneficial tools. 

First thing’s first. What is Google’s Helpful Content Update? 

Google continually works on making its search engine better. Every now and then, they release updates to their search algorithm (this is like the recipe or rules the search engine follows to decide which websites should appear first in the search results). The “Helpful Content” update is one such improvement. It emphasizes showing users content that is genuinely useful to them.

How It Works: 

Imagine you’re running a bakery, and Google is like a food critic who reviews bakeries based on the quality of their cakes, the cleanliness, service, etc. Previously, Google might have looked more closely at things like the size of your bakery or how flashy your sign board is. But now, with this “Helpful Content” update, Google is giving more importance to how tasty and unique your cakes are, whether customers find them useful (or delicious, in this analogy), and if they’re genuinely of high quality.

How Can It Help Your Existing Small Business:

  • Quality Over Quantity: If you’ve been investing time in creating genuinely useful content or products for your audience, you stand to benefit. It means if your business offers something truly valuable to your customers, Google will recognize and reward that.
  • Better User Experience: If your website is user-friendly, provides clear information, and satisfies the queries of the visitors, you’re in a good position. Think of this as ensuring that customers who walk into your store find what they’re looking for easily and have a pleasant experience.
  • Focus on Authenticity: Fake reviews or spammy tactics won’t work. It’s like trying to trick that food critic by hiring people to say your cakes are the best. Google’s getting better at recognizing such tactics, and with this update, it aims to prioritize genuine businesses that are loved by real customers.
  • Less Emphasis on Technicalities: In the past, some businesses tried to “game” the system by using various technical tactics. Now, it’s more about the actual content and the value that content provides. So even if you’re not a tech wizard, as long as you’re focused on offering value, you’re on the right track.
  • Local Business Boost: If your small business caters to a local audience, ensuring that you provide content or services that are relevant and beneficial to that audience can help you rank better in local searches.

What You Can Do:

  • Revisit Your Content: Ensure that your website, blog, or online store has high-quality, relevant content. Update outdated information and get rid of anything that doesn’t add value.
  • Listen to Your Customers: Feedback is gold. Understand what your customers need and tailor your offerings to those needs.
  • Stay Authentic: Encourage genuine reviews and feedback. It’s okay not to be perfect, but it’s essential to be genuine.

Google’s “Helpful Content” update is all about bringing forward businesses that genuinely provide value. If you focus on the needs of your customers, keep things real, and continue to improve, this update could be super uber beneficial for your small business.

While the Google Helpful Content Update emphasizes the value of providing in-depth, relevant information to users, another tool that can be used to ensure your content reaches the right people is Google My Business. Google My Business is huge for businesses aiming to really drive local business and establish themself in their community. 

Google My Business

Google My Business (GMB) profile plays a crucial role, especially when we talk about local searches and providing helpful content to users. But how does Google My Business tie into the Helpful Content Update and what benefits can it provide your business? 

Let’s Break It Down: 

  • Local Search Relevance: One of the primary purposes of Google My Business is to help businesses appear in local searches. When people look for services “near me” or specifically in their town/city, Google uses the information from GMB profiles to display relevant results. If your profile provides comprehensive, helpful, and updated information about your business, it’s more likely to be presented as a top result.
  • User Reviews and Ratings: Your GMB profile allows customers to leave reviews and ratings. Genuine positive reviews not only help boost your profile’s credibility, but also signals to Google that your business provides value and is appreciated by your clientele. This aligns with the “Helpful Content” update’s emphasis on authenticity and genuine user feedback.
  • Detailed Business Information: The more detailed and updated your GMB profile is, the better. Hours of operation, services provided, contact information, photos of your establishment or products—all these pieces of information assist users in making informed decisions. Google recognizes and values businesses that provide comprehensive and helpful details to potential customers.
  • Engagement with Customers: Google My Business allows businesses to respond to reviews, answer questions, and engage with customers. Regularly engaging with your audience—thanking them for positive reviews, addressing concerns in less favorable reviews, answering queries, etc.—shows that you’re actively involved in providing good customer service. This can reflect positively in Google’s assessment of your business.
  • Content Updates via Posts: GMB lets you post updates, offers, events, and more. These posts can act as fresh content, signaling to Google that your business is active and regularly updating its information, thus providing users with the latest and most relevant details.

In essence, a well-maintained Google My Business profile aligns perfectly with the goals of the “Helpful Content” update. It showcases your commitment to serving your local community by providing updated information, and maintaining a genuine engagement with your customers. If you haven’t already, setting up and optimizing your GMB profile is a great step to make the most of this update.

The world of online business is always evolving, but some shifts make waves bigger than others. The introduction of Google’s Helpful Content Update and the increasing importance of Google My Business are two such pivotal moments. But how can businesses, especially small to medium-sized ones, navigate these waters and turn these changes to their advantage?

Practical Benefits:

Before the “Helpful Content” update, John’s website might have ranked on Google mainly based on factors like how many times it mentioned “running shoes” or how many other websites linked to John’s site.

Post the “Helpful Content” update, Google is more interested in the actual usefulness and quality of John’s website and its content. Let’s break down a practical approach:

  • In-depth Shoe Reviews: John starts writing comprehensive reviews of the running shoes he stocks. These reviews aren’t just sales pitches; they provide genuine insight into the shoe’s fit, durability, suitable terrain, and how they compare with other models.
  • Localized Content: He writes blog posts like “Best Trails to Run in [City Name]” or “Local Marathon Prep Tips”. This content appeals directly to his local audience and showcases his expertise about the local running community.
  • User Engagement: On his Google My Business profile, John encourages his customers to leave reviews. When they do, he actively responds—thanking for positive feedback and addressing any concerns or issues.
  • Q&A Section: John adds a Q&A section on his website where local runners can ask questions about shoe choices, running techniques, or local running events. He answers these questions, creating a repository of helpful content for others who might have the same queries.
  • User-generated Content: John encourages local runners to share their own stories or shoe reviews. Perhaps he starts a “Runner of the Month” feature, showcasing local athletes or everyday individuals who share their running experiences.
  • Store Details: On his Google My Business profile and website, John ensures that he’s listed his shop’s opening hours, address, contact information, and even photos of his store’s interior and the range of shoes he offers.
  • Events and Workshops: John organizes monthly workshops at his store on topics like “Choosing the Right Running Shoe” or “Injury Prevention”. He advertises these on his website, making sure to update content regularly.
  • Integration with Social Media: John shares all his blog posts, events, and workshops on his shop’s social media profiles, encouraging local runners to engage, comment, and share their insights.

Post the “Helpful Content” update, Google sees that John’s website and GMB profile are not just about selling shoes. They’ve become a resource for the local running community. So, the next time someone in John’s city searches for “running shoes” or “local running tips”, Google recognizes the value John’s Running Emporium provides and is more likely to rank it higher in the search results.

By focusing on serving his community and creating genuine, helpful content, John aligns his business with the goals of Google’s update, increasing his visibility and potential business.

How We Step In:

At Darion Daniels Creative, we specialize in crafting in-depth content tailored just for your industry. We’re saying good-bye to the days when surface-level content was enough. In light of Google’s Helpful Content Update, the focus is now on creating meaningful, knowledgeable content that genuinely assists potential customers. 

Our aim is not just to create, but to provide solutions, answers, and guidance, ensuring that your online presence stands out and attracts more visitors. But it’s not just about words. With us, businesses like John’s Running Emporium can set aside worries about software subscriptions or the hunt for top-quality business tools. We’ve got you covered, from giving insights on what content drives the most traffic, to even offering a refreshed website design every two years to keep you up-to-date and relevant. 

For local businesses keen on being prominently visible on Google, especially when local clients are on the lookout, the importance of tools like Google My Business is undeniable. Pairing this with our unique online blog platform and a link profile similar to Linktree, we create a seamless connection between your social media activity and your website. 

The result? When local customers stumble upon you on Google, they’re not just met with answers, but are also nudged to take meaningful action. In essence, while Google offers tools to enhance your online visibility, Darion Daniels Creative arms you with the strategy, content, and tech infrastructure to harness that visibility to its fullest.

In a nutshell, Google’s tools open doors for businesses like yours to increase your online presence. In contrast, Darion Daniels Creative provides the strategy, content, and technological backbone to walk through those doors confidently and effectively.