How to Choose and Set Your Google Business Profile Categories

A critical aspect of optimizing your Google Business Profile is selecting the right categories. This article will guide you through the process of choosing and setting your Google Business Profile categories to enhance your online visibility and attract more customers.

Understanding Google Business Profile Categories

Google Business Profile categories are essentially labels that help Google understand the nature of your business. They influence when your business appears in search results and Google Maps, making them a key factor in local SEO (Search Engine Optimization). With over 3,000 categories available and the option to select up to 10 for your profile, it’s important to choose wisely to accurately represent your business and improve its findability.

Why Categories Matter

Selecting the right categories can significantly impact your business’s online performance. Categories help:

  1. Improve Visibility: Correct categories ensure your business shows up in relevant searches.
  2. Attract Targeted Customers: By accurately describing your services, you attract customers searching for your specific offerings.
  3. Boost Local SEO: Proper categorization enhances local search ranking, making your business more competitive in its locale.

How to Choose Your Categories

Start with Primary Category

Your primary category is the most important as it has the greatest impact on your search visibility. It should reflect your business’s main offering. For instance, if you run a bakery that also serves coffee, choose “Bakery” if baking is the primary business and “Café” only if the coffee service dominates.

Research and Select Secondary Categories

Secondary categories are supplementary and should cover other aspects of your business. Use them to indicate additional services or products you offer. For example, a salon could choose “Hair Salon” as the primary category and add “Nail Salon” and “Beauty Salon” as secondary categories.

Use Google’s Suggestions

When you start typing in the category field, Google suggests categories based on your input. These suggestions can help you discover relevant categories you might not have considered.

Observe Competitors

Look at the categories your successful competitors are using. While you shouldn’t copy them exactly, this can give you an idea of what works well in your industry.

Regularly Update Categories

As your business evolves, so should your categories. Regularly review and update them to reflect any new services or changes in your business focus.

How to Set Your Google Business Profile Categories

Setting or updating your categories is straightforward:

  1. Sign in to Google Business Profile: Go to the Google Business Profile Manager and sign in with your business account.
  2. Select Your Business: Choose the business you want to update.
  3. Edit Info: Click on the “Info” tab on the left-hand menu.
  4. Edit Categories: Find the “Categories” section and click on the pencil icon to edit.
  5. Add or Remove Categories: Search for and select your primary category, then add up to nine secondary categories. Save your changes.

Best Practices

  • Accuracy is Key: Ensure your categories accurately reflect your business to avoid misleading potential customers.
  • Prioritize Your Primary Category: This is the most visible and impactful category, so choose it carefully.
  • Keep it Relevant: Only select categories that are directly relevant to your business operations.
  • Monitor Performance: Use Google Analytics and Google Business Profile insights to monitor how changes to your categories affect your visibility and engagement.

Conclusion

Choosing and setting your Google Business Profile categories is a crucial step in optimizing your online presence and enhancing your visibility to potential customers. By carefully selecting relevant and accurate categories, and regularly reviewing and updating them, you can significantly impact your business’s local search performance. Follow the steps and best practices outlined in this article to make the most of your Google Business Profile and attract more customers to your business.