Retailers who fail to create and maintain active store profiles on Google risk losing out on new customers, they have been warned.
Abdul Arain, of Al-Amin stores in Cambridge, spotted the opportunity five years ago when he began utilising social media to boost his business.
“People use Google Maps because they want to find places online instantly,” he said. “It’s important for retailers to make sure information is clear and images are bright.”
Mr Arain arranged for Google Maps to take photos inside his store, allowing customers to browse the shop online prior to a physical visit.
“There’s so much competition online so you need to stand out,” he said.
Julian Taylor-Green, of Spar in Lindford, links a 6.5% uplift in sales last year to his utilisation of the online platform.
“Make sure opening times are up to date and ensure you upload plenty of high quality, colourful images of your displays and promotions. It maximises how many people come into your store,” he said.
Steve Denham, associate editor of betterRetailing.com, raised the issue in his online column last week. He believes retailers must maximise their Google visibility to ensure stores are promoted in every way.