How to Optimize Photos and Video for Google Business Profiles

How to Optimize Photos and Video for Google Business Profile
Founder of InboundREM an inbound marketing lead generation company focused on SEO. Blogger. Real Estate SEO expert. Real Estate Lead Generation expert. Real estate online marketing fanatic. Podcaster. Occasional public speaker and frequent vlogger.

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How Important are Photos and Video to GPBs?

  • Businesses with over 100 images on GBP get 2,717% more direction requests than the average business.
  • Businesses with over 100 images get 960% more search views than the average business.
  • Businesses with over 100 images get 520% more calls than the average business.

Now, these huge percentages are definitely a case of causation vs. correlation. Adding 100 photos to your GBP without making any other changes won’t cause this level of increased inbound leads.

It’s better to consider these statistics as indicators of what happens when you optimize your GBP in general. Profiles with 100+ photos will also have more reviews, responses, posts, etc.

Even so, photos and video are important aspects of an optimized Google Business Profile because they increase user interaction metrics.

In other words, the Google algorithm boosts business profiles when visitors click, view, watch, and stay longer. It works in a highly similar way to organic search results.

Which Photos and Video Should I Add?

Here are the official Google guidelines for uploading photos and video to your profile.

Some experts like Tom Ferry recommend adding lifestyle photos and video to your GBP. With respect, I disagree. It’s my opinion that this method is completely appropriate for a professional Instagram account, but not for GBPs.

I recommend using the ideas below instead.

GBP Photo and Video Ideas

  • Professional headshots
  • Team photos
  • Office photos and video tours
  • Photos with clients at showings, open houses, and closing day
  • Networking event photos
  • Just Sold/Just Listed photos
  • Community involvement photos with an explicitly professional presence

All of these ideas are great, but a professional headshot and team photos are essential.

In addition to these ideas, it’s smart to include your logo and a cover photo. These are special GBP photo categories. They are the only photos that you will be able to decide where they appear on your profile.

The logo will appear when you respond to reviews. The cover photo will appear as the featured photo for your profile. I recommend using a team photo or professional headshot.

Tagging GBP Photos and Videos

In most cases, Google will automatically tag your photos correctly. The four tag options are Interior, Exterior, Products/Services, and Employees/Team.

It’s possible to correct these tags once the photos have been uploaded. Sometimes users have some difficulty troubleshooting imperfectly tagged photos. Overall, I wouldn’t say this is an area where you should lose sleep.

Geo-Tagging GBP Photos

A typical digital photo has a “geo-tag”, which is the coordinates of where the photo was taken built into the file. Often smartphones automatically geotag their photos unless you have location tracking switched off.

It’s been pretty well established by Google and other sources that geotags on photos make zero difference to your Google Business Profile in 2023. So it’s another area where you shouldn’t lose any sleep.

So what should you focus on?

Tips for Leveraging GBP Photos and Videos

Media content is going to play a much bigger role for clothing shops and restaurants than real estate agents. But that doesn’t mean that agents can’t leverage media content well.

Client Interaction Photos

One technique that very few agents use is regularly adding client interaction photos. Of course, you should always ask permission during a showing or closing that you want to upload the photo to your Google Business Profile.

While reviews and responses definitely add a human touch, and therefore strong branding, to Google Business Profiles, the platform is more plain compared to a YouTube channel or well-branded website.

I recommend adding a few client interaction photos to your profile every month. Even better, send the photos to your clients to include in their reviews. It’s a strong indicator to prospects that you value strong relationships with clients.

Video Content

Google also allows videos up to 30 seconds long. This is another area where the vast majority of even strong real estate GBPs don’t optmize their profiles. As I’ve mentioned, getting people to click and stay on your profile is an essential way to outrank competitors.

Short videos touring your offices, listed properties, and driving around neighborhoods are excellent ways to get visitors to stay on your profile for much longer than your competitors.

It has the additional benefit of introducing prospects to your personality, which goes a long way in encouraging people to contact you.

The Ultimate Video Idea

My final piece of advice is to find a client or three willing to do a 30-second video about what they loved about working with you. As you can imagine, this isn’t something many clients want to do, even if they loved your service.

On the other hand, this reluctance can work in your favor. Imagine being the only agent in your city with multiple people overcoming their camera-shyness and doing brief video reviews. If I was looking for a realtor, that would be strong evidence to me that this is the best agent in my area.

That said, if you can get a few clients to answer a couple questions with you on video, and they upload that video with their 5-star review, then you’re definitely going to see more inbound leads.

Keep in mind that long, 200+ word reviews will stay at the top of your profile for months. Combining a short video interview with a long written review may be the strongest moves you can make in terms of inspiring outreach.

Keep This in Mind About GBP Review Videos

That said, the algorithm for allowing videos attached to reviews can be finicky. It’s possible that you invest time into a short interview that doesn’t get approved. Obviously, that would be disheartening. 

For that reason, I recommend generating these videos with the intention to post them across multiple platforms. Video testimonials are powerful conversion pieces, and you should crosspost in any case.

Instagram, TikTok, Websites, Facebook, and even LinkedIn are all fantastic places to post video testimonials. If GBP approves your client’s attempt to attach a video to their review, all the better. 

Google Business Profile Articles

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