If you own a bar in Spain then the chances are that you don’t just rely on your local customers but also on tourists, especially in the peak summer season.
Many people, when they are planning a trip, will search for the best bars in the place they are planning to visit. If your bar is not listed on Google My Business or Google Maps, then you are missing out on a valuable opportunity to attract new customers. This is where local SEO comes into play, and this especially means setting up and optimizing your Google My Business page (even if you don’t actually have a website).
The importance of good local SEO for bars
Great local SEO means getting your bar listed on the first page of Google Maps and Google My Business. This is because the great majority of tourists will be using a mobile phone or tablet if they are looking for a place to go on the go.
Imagine that you run a sports bar with great food, draught lager and all the latest sports events. Then imagine that there is an important event coming up, it could be a golf championship or a football match. Your clients want to watch these events while enjoying a drink and you definitely want them to do it in your bar. If you would like help promoting your bar then please contact me for a free no-obligation consultation.
What bars should optimize on Google My Business
VERIFICATION: First of all you need to get your bar verified on Google My Business. If you have already done that, then it’s time to move on to the next step. Need help setting up your Google My Business profile? Contact me for a FREE CONSULTATION
Your business information, often known as NAP (Name, Address, and Phone Number). This must be accurate and must be the same across all your digital platforms. Sometimes, in Spain, the address can differ, you might see the address written one way on your electric bill but another way on your phone bill. It is crucial that all your addresses are exactly the same online.
Google wants all categories to focus on services, so your main category might be bar or pub. It is important to think of all the categories that your bar fits into such as sports bar, family bar, etc.
This is a fundamental part of optimizing your Google My Business profile, It is important to use keywords in your description but focus on making sure you describe what your bar offers and what makes it unique.
Make sure that your hours are the same across all your digital platforms such as Instagram, Facebook etc. If you close in the middle of the afternoon or at 9pm on Sundays then it is important to keep this information up to date.
There is nothing worse than a negative review saying that a group of people turned up for a night out only to find that you were closed and that your Google My Business page said you were open.
It’s really important to include photos of your bar, photos showing a busy bar with people having fun is a lot more enticing than just one image of the outside of the bar.
The image size for Google My Business is between 10kb and 5MB and should have a resolution of at least 720px x 720px. You should also make sure that you add your logo and a background image.
The importance of reviews
One of the most important parts of local SEO for bars is the importance of reviews. When a potential customer goes online to look for a bar to go to, they are going to look for reviews first.
When they find a review that talks about how great the food was, how friendly the staff were, how great the sports program was on TV, the impact that the music had and the overall vibe of the bar, the potential customer will be more likely to go and check it out. The better the reviews and the more you have, the higher up the page on Google Maps you will appear and the more likely it is that people will turn up.
One thing that bar owners often overlook is the importance of asking for reviews. It is often the case that once a client has had a great experience in a bar they will leave a positive review.
The key is to find a way to ask your clients to leave a review without being too pushy. One way to do this is to leave a comment on the receipt or on the bill thanking the client for coming in and saying that you would really appreciate it if they could leave a review on Google or Facebook.
Another way is to put up a poster with a QR code linking to the bar’s Google My Business page and asking people to leave a review.
Under no circumstance should you offer a reward or incentive to leave a positive review as this is against Google’s review policies
Should I respond to reviews?
You should reply to all reviews regardless of the score. It increases your chances of getting more reviews and can help you get better rankings on local search. It’s a win-win situation for you.
Optimizing your website
If you don’t have a website then you should definitely consider getting one. A good web designer can design you a quality website at a reasonable price. For a bar, you don’t really need to go over board with lots of pages. A simple one-page or two-page site is more than enough.
Your website should include all the information that your potential customers would be looking for. For example:
- Where you are?
- Opening hours
- Do you need to book for large parties?
- What’s on: Live music, sports events, bingo, karaoke etc
- What food you offer, if any
- Drinks / Cocktails
- Any other relevant information
Optimizing your Google My Business page for your bar and optimizing your website is essential if you want to attract new clients. Nowadays, people have so much more information at their finger tips, gone are the days of just let’s go out and see what happens.
If you really want to stand out from the crowd, you need to make sure that people can find you and have a reason to come and spend money in YOUR bar