Auto Service World
News   May 9, 2023   by Joe Flammer

From the Magazine: Marketing Insights: Raising Your Profile

Just as you search for a restaurant, people are looking for an auto service shop. Why you need to be on the biggest platform available

I’m about to read your mind.

If you recently used your phone to search out a restaurant for dinner or any other local business, I’d confidently say you used Google. That’s because 88 per cent of Canadians start their web searches there.

So when you want to get your shop in front of more customers, the best place to start is with your Google Business Profile (GBP), formerly known as Google My Business.

Google describes GBP as “a free tool that allows you to take charge of the way your business appears on Google Search and Maps.” When customers search its site for any kind of local business — restaurants, hair stylists, auto repair shops — on a desktop or mobile device, they’ll see a list of options on the search results page. Those options include the Google Business Profile listings.

Your GBP is critically important because of Google’s dominance. The closest competitor to Google is Microsoft’s Bing, accounting for less than 4 per cent of searches. For auto repair shops, the number of leads you get from your free GBP listing will almost always outrank the number of leads coming from your professionally-managed website and paid Google Ads — combined.

This means your business has the potential to get as many or more phone calls or forms filled from this free marketing tool than any other marketing source.

So how can you use your GBP to get your phone ringing? Here are three simple steps:

Claim your profile

If you haven’t done it yet, you’ll need to claim your profile. This takes only a few minutes. Many top operators pay thousands of dollars for a website and paid ads but have never claimed their GBP. Studies show 56 per cent of businesses are unclaimed in Google. Again — this is free. Don’t miss out on this opportunity.

Complete your profile

Customers are almost three times more likely to consider a business reputable — and contact them — if they find a complete GBP. Verify your business’s name, address and phone number. Include all the vital statistics: Business category, opening date, hours and services. The more details you list, the more clicks and calls you’ll get.

Connect with customers

GBP isn’t a “set it and forget it” deal. Cars need regular maintenance to run their best, and so does your GBP.  You’ll better connect with customers when you regularly respond to reviews, add photos and updates and keep your holiday hours current. Also, check to see if Google has any “suggestions” to improve your business listing. You may not want to accept every suggestion; approve or reject as needed. Most importantly, keeping your profile updated shows Google that you’re relevant — which pushes your business higher in the search results and makes it easier for customers to find you.

When it comes to your GBP, remember: Claim, complete, connect. It’s free, it’s simple to use, and it works. You’ll get more customers calling, more vehicles in your bays, and more dollars in your bank account.

Joe Flammer is a director of marketing for Turnkey Marketing. Based in Kansas City, he serves as outsourced director of marketing for auto repair shops. Learn more at

This article originally appeared in the March/April issue of CARS

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