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The complete guide to GMB attributes for local SEO

The complete guide to GMB attributes for local SEO

Google My Business (GMB) attributes are a consistent way for businesses to share what they offer and what a customer can expect when using that business.

They are also a way for a business to optimize its local search presence. The more detailed a listing is with attributes, the more likely a listing can be ranked for a particular targeted search with an attribute modifier – for example [accessible restaurants near me] or [miami hotels with free wifi].

In this blog post, you will discover the different types of GMB attributes that are available to companies depending on your primary business category and how local marketers can best utilize these attributes.

Types of Google My Business attributes

There are two types of attributes within a list on GMB: actual or subjective.

Actual attributes are maintained by the company, while subjective attributes are retrieved by Google through statements from users who visited the company. The company is not able to update or check these subjective attributes.

Subjective characteristics that users may be asked may be whether a business is popular, good for groups, relaxed, cozy, good for children, and so on.

This guide will primarily focus on actual attributes, as these are the ones that your companies can update in the GMB platform.

These attributes help you proactively answer common search queries right on your local list. Often, customers compare their options and make a decision without ever clicking through to call a company or visit their website.

If you want to be the chosen site or service provider, be sure to provide all possible information to help searchers choose your location.

Updating attributes in GMB

Each GMB list has the ability to update multiple attributes, and the ones available for each list are determined by the primary category of the list. Not all categories offer the same attributes.

Attributes can also vary depending on the country your listings are in. Be sure to select the primary category that is most useful for the brand so that the right attributes are available for your listing.

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To make updates to your attributes, first log in to your GMB account to see which attributes are available for your lists. Click the information tab in the panel on the left.

Click “From Company – Add Attributes” in the Info section.

You will now be able to see the categories and specific attributes available for that listing.

The most common types of categories across GMBs are availability from business, facilities, health and safety, highlights, payments and service options.

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Google also provides information on how to update, add or edit attributes on GMB. You also have the option to search for specific facilities when you click on the “From Company” section.

Availability

Accessibility attributes let companies share with customers how they are set up to allow customers who may have certain needs.

The available attributes are wheelchair access, wheelchair access, disabled seating, wheelchair accessible parking and / or wheelchair accessible lift.

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For specific definitions regarding these specific accessibility attributes, visit the GMB Availability page.

From the store

“From the company” allows an owner to highlight whether their business is black, women or veteran.

health

Health and safety attributes were added due to COVID-19. This enables a company to share what their mask and temperature control policy is for both their staff and guests.

It also says whether a company requires a reservation and whether they disinfect surfaces between visits.

These characteristics are especially important as consumers in different regions are vaccinated and become more comfortable shopping in the store again.

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Payments

Payment attributes are only cash, Checks, credit cards (American Express, China Union Pay, Diners Club, Discover, JCB, MasterCard and VISA), Debit cards, NFC mobile payments.

And no, bitcoin is not an option (yet).

Hotels

Hotel attributes are set up completely differently in GMB compared to other categories. Select “Hotel attributes” and it will take you to a new page where you can add all sorts of information that people can consider when searching for their next hotel stay.

Hotel attributes are broken down by property information and room information. Categories for property information are:

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Health and safety.COVID-19 responder policy.Internet.Food & drink.Politics and payments.Activities.Services.Children.Pools.Parking and transportation.Wellness.Accessibility.Business & events.Pets.

There are quite detailed questions for each of these categories. Room information is divided into general room functions and food-related room functions.

General room features include air conditioning, private bathroom, bathtub and shower.

Food-related room features include a kitchen, refrigerator, microwave, coffee maker and / or minibar. You can find a more detailed explanation of the specific attributes available for hotels from Google here.

Restaurants

Although there are not as many attributes to update as with hotels, there are still quite a few options available for restaurants. The main categories available for restaurants are facilities, dining options, specials and service options.

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Facilities allow a restaurant to share if there is a bar on site, good for children, has high chairs, WiFi and gender neutral toilet.

Dining options allow a business to highlight their offerings such as breakfast, catering, dessert, lunch, dinner, and if there is seating.

Offers notify customers if a company offers alcohol or certain food offers. The last category of service options focuses on how food can be achieved through options such as curbs, delivery, dining, drive-through, takeaway and outdoor seating.

There is also GMB API which can be used to update attributes in bulk. If there are a large number of locations and data changes frequently, it may make sense to use the API – especially if there is a validated source of truth.

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It is important for your brand to maintain the right attributes. Since local searches are targeted at specific queries such as restaurants that accept checks or a wheelchair-friendly hotel with pool and restaurant, your brand can stand out from your competitors if you take advantage of all the attributes that apply to you.

If you leave certain attributes unchecked, you may miss out on relevant searches and the resulting conversions.

Give local customers all the information they need to make a decision in your local listing.

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Image Credits: All Screenshots by the Author, June 2021

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