Finding More Clients for Your Shop with Google Business

For any barber or barbershop looking to bring in more money, getting more clients is at the top of the list of things to do. 

But the days where all your clients are just walking in off the street are gone. To get more clients, you’ve got to meet your prospective customers where they’re at–online.

Most barbers know they’ve got to build their social media presence on Instagram and other platforms. But if you want to increase your chances of bringing in the most clients to your business, you’ve got to do more than a few reels a week showing off your fades. 

You’ve got to get your shop on the top of Google search results. We’re going to talk about what you can do to improve your shop’s search engine results, but first, let’s take a look at why it matters.

Is Google helping or hurting your business right now?

As a consumer, finding a new barber can be a challenge. Maybe a friend gives you a recommendation for their barber. But people are just as likely to search Google for barbers.

When you search “best barbershops in [your city],” what turns up? It’s a listing of the top-reviewed barbershops next to a map (see below). 

New clients probably aren't searching for your shop by name. They want to know who's the best near them.

Is your shop there when you search your city?

Almost half (46%) of all Google searches are for local businesses and services. People turn to Google because they need to know where to go to get what they need. That’s why the “best barbershop in [your city]” or “top barbershops in [your city]” searches deliver results that include directions and ratings/recommendations. It’s easy for people to find a good business.

That’s where you need your business to be. Because most people aren’t going to explore all the way to the 10th, 20th, or 30th shop on the list. Google wants people to be happy with their service, which is why they make such an effort to recommend highly-rated, local shops. If people think Google is recommending shitty products and services, people are going to stop using Google.

You need to make Google see your business is a sure bet recommendation.

When you play your cards right, Google can be a huge factor in driving new business to your shop. But if you’re not playing the game, your business is going to be buried by the competition.

6 steps to improve how your shop shows up on Google

Let’s up your search engine marketing game. Many of these things you can do today pretty fast, while others may take some more time and effort. But all of them are going to help elevate your brand online and drive more new clients to your shop.

  1. Claim your business on Google

The first step is to create a Google Business profile here. This is a free service provided by Google that lets you claim your business online. What does this allow you to do?

  • Share key info like shop hours, phone number, etc.
  • Share photos and logo to help new customers recognize your brand and shopfront 
  • Highlight attributes of your business like Black-owned, veteran-owned, woman-owned, etc.

Claiming your business is going to help you stand out from so many other shops in the area. 

You’ll need to verify that you own the business. You can do so through phone, text, email, video and depending on how much information you have out their already, you may need to use more than one method. (Read more about verification for your business here.)

It may take up to 7 days to verify and a few weeks for your updated information to show up once you do verify. But it’s worth the wait. 

  1. Update your key information regularly

Once you’ve got your shop verified on Google, make sure all of your key information is correct. That includes:

  • Phone number
  • Address
  • Shop hours
  • Holiday hours/ closures
  • Website
  • Services you offer

When people find your business on Google search recommendations or search for your brand by name, having all of this information up-to-date and correct is going to create a good first impression. And it’ll cut down on frustrated reviews when walk-ins show up on days/times you’re not there.

  1. Add photos

Google allows you to provide photos of your business. This is a great way to create a good first impression of your brand and to set expectations.

If you don’t upload your own photos, your new customers will get photos that others have uploaded of your business. They might not be the most flattering–especially if they were paired with a negative review. Don’t let that be the first impression of your business and scare customers away.

  1. Have a helpful website

If you don’t have a website already, it is worth creating one. Not only does it make customers feel like your business is legit, it makes Google see your business as more legit. 

Whether you’re building your first website or updating your website, you want to make sure that you check for the following things to make Google happy (and give your customers a good experience with your brand):

  • Make sure it works well on mobile–Google punishes websites that aren’t mobile-friendly.
  • Make sure it’s easy to read–Google punishes websites that aren’t friendly to all visitors, including those with visual impairments. Your dark gray font on black background design may look cool, but if it’s hard to read Google won’t like that.
  • Provide content for Google to use–Google wants your business’ website to be useful, so having pages that explain your services, tell customers about your business’ history, introduce the barbers, and provide customer reviews all boost your website’s ranking.
  • Design it for your local audience–Your shop is a local business, so make sure your website reflects your community and talks about your city/town. This will help you be seen as more relevant when people search for “barbershops in [your city].” 
  • Give consumers a way to book and buy–Google loves it when your website let’s consumers interact with your business. Let your customers book through your site and maybe even buy retail products online for pick-up at the next appointment.

You may not be able to build a website right away. But if you want to build your brand’s presence on Google, it’s worth spending your time on creating a website that shows off your shop, your barbers, and your craft.

  1. Build your reputation with 5-star reviews

One of the most important reasons you need to take control of your Google Business profile is to manage your Google reviews. When you’re signed in to your Google Business profile through Google Maps, you get alerted every time you get a new review.

When you get 5-star reviews, it feels awesome to get that alert. You can use those reviews as social proof on Instagram or your website.

Of course, getting anything less than 5-stars can feel like crap. But since you’re logged into Google Business, you can now respond to those negative reviews. This is your chance to make things right with an upset customer. Or, even if you can’t fix things, responding with grace can show other customers that you’re a good shop to work with–even when something goes wrong. 

A bad review with a good response from the business can be as influential as a good review to a new client.

But obviously you want to get as many 5-star reviews as possible. SQUIRE helps shops out with Reviews Booster, a feature that helps you get 5-star reviews up to 4x faster. It automatically invites your most loyal customers to leave 5-star reviews on your Google Business page. 

Learn more about Reviews Booster here. And you can read our article on how to get more reviews (and make sure they don’t suck) here if you’re interested in learning even more.

  1. Make it easy to book through Google

Google wants to make things as easy as possible for people. That’s why you should integrate your booking into Google. When customers search for the top barbershops in your city, you want that booking process to take place in as few clicks as possible. 

Having the "Book Online" button directly on Google gives you a leg up on the competition.

If you use a system like SQUIRE to manage your bookings, you can easily integrate your booking experience into your Google Business listing. Instead of having to visit your website or call your shop, there’s a super convenient “Book Online” button. That button brings up a page directly on Google where customers can choose a service and a time for their visit. 

Booking directly through Google is simple with SQUIRE.

It’s easy for your customers, for you as the shop owner, and for your barbers who don’t have to field calls all day to get people on the schedule. 

Step up your search engine presence with SQUIRE

With a few simple steps, you can dramatically improve the way customers experience your brand on Google. If you want to take it to the next level, SQUIRE’s got your back. We’ll help you get more great reviews from customers and give your new clients an incredibly simple way to book directly in Google.

That’s just a piece of what SQUIRE’s Barbershop Business Management System has to offer shop owners. See how SQUIRE can elevate your business by signing up for a free demo today

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