Real Estate Marketing Ideas, Farm Fridays

How to Optimize Your Realtor Google My Business Profile

By Meaghan Loraas Last Updated February 22, 2023 8 min read

Hi there and welcome to Farm Fridays! My name is Meaghan Loraas and I’m the content marketing manager at Virtuance. I have a degree in creative writing and nearly 10 years of experience helping small business owners increase their web presence and online brand awareness. I’ve done it all: SEO copywriting, creating landing pages, ebooks and white papers, local SEO, monitoring paid search campaigns, and more.

My goal with this series is to help both new and seasoned real estate agents improve their digital marketing stack to lead to more customer conversions. How? With premium content written by experts that you can only find here at Virtuance!

If the last year and a half taught us anything, it’s that we have to learn to adapt. While you may not be accustomed to using digital marketing tactics to grow your farm, the internet is here to stay. Don’t worry, though. I’m here to hold your hand through it all. Are you ready?

First up: GMB profiles.

Key Terms Defined

I’ll start each post with the definition of key terms you’ll need to understand to become your own digital marketing guru for your real estate business.

What is Google My Business (GMB)? 

Google My Business, often referred to by its initials GMB, is Google’s way of providing information about businesses. In fact, GMB profiles have proven local SEO benefits. Have you ever wondered how people get their businesses to show up on the side of the search results in a map? Claiming your GMB listing can be an excellent way to increase your web presence and visibility to potential customers in your area. 

real estate agent map pack
Here’s an example of GMB profiles that come up when you search for “real estate agents Portland.”

What are Google posts?

Google posts are a Google feature that allows businesses to send messages directly to consumers. These posts show up on Google Maps and the local knowledge panel on the right side of the SERP (search engine results page) when someone conducts a branded search. Google posts can be up to 300 words long and include a photo. Additionally, you can include a call to action button and a date range for special events (such as open houses!). 

What is a SERP?

SERP stands for search engine results page. This is the page you see after you submit a search query on Google. They often include Google Maps results, paid search ads, and organic search results of your query. 

What is Local SEO?

Local SEO (search engine optimization) focuses on making your business visible to potential clients in your geographic area. Focusing on local SEO can be great for your real estate business so that you can obtain local prospective customers. If you are a realtor in Austin, you don’t need to show up for results in New York or Canada, for example. Instead, optimizing your web presence for searches like “Austin realtor” or “Austin real estate” or “Austin homes for sale” will result in more visibility to potential buyers. 

How to Claim Your Real Estate GMB Profile

Any real estate agent who owns their own business is eligible to claim their Google My Business profile, even if their brokerage has one, too. But how do you do it? 

Luckily, claiming and optimizing a GMB profile is fairly simple. You can probably complete your profile in two hours! 

1. Search for yourself on Google

Go to and perform a Google search for your name (or your real estate team). If you have a Google My Business profile, it will show up at the top of the results (if searching on mobile) or to the right of the results (on desktop). It’s best to claim the record that Google already has for you than to create a new one. If you have two GMB profiles, you run the risk of confusing existing or potential clients. 

2. Look for a link that says, “Own this business?”

If you see your GMB profile after conducting your search, you’ll want to click on the link that says “Own this business?” to begin the process of claiming your GMB profile. Google walks you through this process step by step from start to finish. 

What if I don’t see a GMB profile in my name?

If you don’t see a GMB profile for your business or brokerage, you need to create a new one. 

  1. Go to 
  2. Look for the button that says “Add your business to Google.” 
  3. Create a Google account if you don’t have one. 
create new GMB profile real estate agent
Search for your business name on to create a new GMB profile!

Google officially suggests that you use your business email for your GMB profile, but I don’t recommend using an account that is private or personal. When you scale your business, you’ll want an account that you don’t mind sharing with other employees or team members. 

3. Include Keywords in Your Business Name

When you input your business name, make sure to include the words “real estate agent” or “realtor.” For example, Meaghan Loraas, Real Estate Agent or Meaghan Loraas, Realtor. 

Why Should I Include Keywords in My Business Name?

You may like the look of using just your name as your business name, but by including terms like “real estate agent” or “real estate broker” you can improve your search rankings for those terms in Google My Business. 

4. Choose Your Categories

While you are claiming your GMB profile, Google will ask you to select categories for your business. I don’t see any reason why a real estate agent wouldn’t use both “real estate agents” and “real estate consultants” as categories. However, make sure to claim any business category that is relevant to your business. Don’t claim categories that have nothing to do with your specific business (like “construction”). 

5. Verify!

The last and most important step to claiming your GMB profile is to verify your business listing. In nearly every case, this must happen through the mail. Yup. Snail mail. Google will send you a postcard to your business address within a few weeks. However, keep in mind that Google has been operating with a smaller team than normal so some verifications may take a bit longer. The postcard will have a five-digit verification code and instructions to input the code in order to verify your business. While the verification process may take a while, it’s pretty easy to complete! In some cases, you may qualify for phone verification or instant verification. However, I’ve noticed that Google is opting for mail in more and more cases.

How to Optimize Your Real Estate Agent GMB

Now it’s time to optimize your Google My Business profile so that a prospective customer can see all of your relevant business details. 

1. Add Business Details

Successful GMB profiles have as much detail as possible. Make sure to include a business description, business hours, business location, and business phone number. GMB profiles allow you to update your hours of operation if you need to change hours for a holiday or other event. 

2. Add Photos and Videos

Businesses with photos receive priority when it comes to Google’s search algorithms. In addition to featuring your contact details, your Google My Business profile can highlight what makes your business unique to your potential customers. I suggest including a photo of the exterior of your business, especially if you expect your clients to come into your office. Sometimes, even with the best Google map directions, I still struggle to find the business I’m looking for (especially if I found them online). Maybe that’s just me. 

Other photos you can include are photos of yourself and your team. Different business types include different photos and videos on their GMB profile. For example, a video game store will likely upload photos of consoles or their merchandising. You could include a popular listing photo or a video tour of your office. 

real estate photography
Since Virtuance is a real estate photography service, we use our product in our GMB profile (real estate photos). What ideas do you have for your realtor GMB?

Also, there has been some pretty compelling evidence that businesses with photos receive 42% more requests for directions than those without (as reported by Google). 

3. Designate Your Service Areas

One of the benefits of using GMB profiles and other local SEO tactics is to ensure that you don’t waste your time fielding leads from areas outside of your service area. Make sure to list all areas and zip codes where you conduct business, but don’t stray too far. Google is pretty strict about having accurate information on your Google My Business profile. 

4. Respond to Customer Reviews and Request More

Google rewards business listings that have consistent, high-quality customer reviews. You can also appear higher in Google search results by responding to customer reviews. Your business dashboard will alert you each time you have a new review (or you can sign up to have email alerts). An important ranking factor for your Google search results are positive reviews of your business. Google also likes to see you handle negative reviews with grace. For example, if someone leaves a 1-star review for your business, you should seek the reviewer’s contact info and attempt to resolve the situation rather than respond with something nasty in the moment. 

You can send out a link to your client list to request more reviews. However, be careful with this. Sometimes too many reviews at once can backfire! Google may penalize you if you get 50 reviews in a day, which may look a bit spammy. 

5. Use Google Posts

Businesses that continually update their Google My Business profile with posts and photos are more likely to attract prospective clients. Google posts are available in three categories: Offer, Event, and What’s New. In general, Google posts are meant for short-term initiatives, such as an open house. Most Google posts go away within a week unless they are Event posts. Event posts last until the event is over. That’s why it’s important to continually update your GMB profile. 

6. Answer Customer Questions

Google My Business profiles allow customers to ask questions about a business right on the SERP. In these cases, either you or another user can answer these questions. The Q&A feature is featured on the Google Business panel. 

Are there other business directories I should be in?

Yup. Google My Business is just one business directory (though it is undeniably a powerful one). Some other business directories you can be in include:, Yelp, and Bing. 

Benefits of Using and Optimizing Your Google My Business Profile

attract more clients real estate agents
An optimized Google My Business profile can attract more clients to your real estate business!

Well, you may have read this whole thing and still don’t quite understand how this process can help your business. Don’t worry. It’ll help. Here’s how:

1. Google My Business makes you easier to contact.

When you create and optimize your GMB profile, you make yourself available to prospective customers at the click of a button. A successful Google My Business profile will include your contact info, address, social media profiles, and more. Your clients can contact you directly from the SERP!

2. Google My Business provides social context.

When you have recent positive reviews and photos of your work on your GMB profile, you can show customers that you are a good fit for their needs. People will trust you when other people trust you, ya know what I mean?

3. Google My Business increases your web presence and brand awareness.

Well-crafted GMB profiles will attract potential customers. Additionally, Google will give you a little bump in your search rankings if you have a GMB that customers interact with regularly. That means you can show up ahead of your competition in the SERPs!

Want More Content Like This?

Come back next Friday for the next Farm Friday post where I’ll be showing you how to use Google Search Console for insights on your real estate business’s web presence.