As Google has become one of the top travel planning tools for travelers across the nation and world, businesses have had to adapt. In partnership with Google, the Delaware Tourism Office hosted a workshop in May to assist local businesses in maximizing their only presence with Google’s online tools.

Google my Business

Held in partnership with Google and Miles, the workshop helped local business owners maximize their online presence—and reach more travelers—using the giant tech company’s handy online tools. Participants walked away with new insight into making the platform work for them.

Here are just a few of the inside tips shared by the Google expert:

1. The Google Knowledge Panel is free advertising!

By importing key facts about your business, you gain a free and fabulously effective way of connecting with potential customers. Be sure to upload accurate, up-to-date information as well as high-quality photos that convey the feel of your business without eating up your advertising budget. And be sure to keep your establishment’s hours up to date—especially during holiday weekends.

2. Your Google presence says a lot about who your business!

Google users/travelers tend to give preference to businesses by the amount of work put into a My Business page. Show these visitors your business is active by regularly updating photos and posts, adding events, answering questions and responding to reviews. PHOTO TIP: Google prefers horizontal images, without people in the picture, and with no software filters added.

3. Your location on Google Maps is more important than you think!

Consumers view the map of a searched location 44% of the time, so be sure to view your listing on Google Maps to ensure the location is spot-on. Remember: 41% of visitors who view you on Google Maps will come to your location, and they will use Google to get to your front door!

4. Google visitors want to interact with you!

When people ask questions on your Google profile, they will base their visit on the answers, just as they would inside your business. Set your notifications to alert you when new questions are asked, and answer them as soon as possible. Remember: Customers can go back and change their reviews on Google, so be sure you are responding to negative comments in a way that changes their perspective.