Step one is understanding the difference between Google Search and Google My Business.
Google Search is a mountain that is difficult to climb. Google My Business is a path up that mountain that Google has specifically tailored to help businesses with local viewpoints reach local customers. And it just might be the perfect tool for you.
Google Search rankings are challenging because they cannot be recklessly manipulated. Google is incredibly skilled at ranking websites via a complicated algorithmic process that aggregates hyperlinks, popularity, current trends, and other such factors. And it’s also very good at detecting when someone is trying to manipulate its rankings.
Google can no longer be forced, tricked, or managed, as was possible in the early days of the internet—for example when websites would hide keywords at the bottom of a page in the same color font as the background (so that they were visible to searches but not to the site’s human visitors). Achieving, and then maintaining, a high ranking on Google Search requires an ongoing, organic process of matching your site’s overall profile to what Google’s algorithm prefers. And the “ongoing” aspect is important because Google is constantly refining its criteria, your business must always be flexible and responsive to those changes. Google Search’s continual modifications make the tool very good at what it does, but they can also make being seen very difficult for small and/or locally focused companies.