GMB Categories For Dealers

Updated: Nov 14, 2022 | Nick Ainge Roy | 3 mins. read

One of the most common problems we encounter when we start working with new clients is the incorrect use of Google Business Profile (Google My Business) categories. Before we dive into the issue though, let us give you a quick refresher on what a Google Business Profile is.

A Google Business Profile, or GMB as it used to be known, is a snapshot of your business that Google shows to users when they search for you – it’s that little box on the right hand side of the search engine results page that tells you a business’s address, phone number and opening hours. You can see our Retain Media GBP below.

When it comes to boosting your visibility and attracting customers, the GBP is one of the most powerful local SEO tools at your disposal (for more information about local SEO, check out this article we wrote). In it, customers can find all of the essential information they will want if they Google you directly, but it also plays a major role in directing broader searches towards your business – this is where categories come in.

Categories tell Google and its users what your business does, and there are both primary and secondary categories. For us, our primary category shown above is ‘Marketing agency’. This allows customers to see what we offer at a glance, but it also tells Google to display our business to anyone that searches ‘marketing agency Melbourne’ or any of the additional services shown below.

Missing GBP Categories Could Be Costing You Thousands

Categories are the main way that Google directs customers to your business, which is why it is crucial to have the right categories listed in your GBP. To understand the potential impact of categories, let’s look at three Ford dealers all located in Melbourne.

As we can see, one of these dealers does not have the brand name listed in their primary category, so they will immediately miss out on any customers who are searching for  ‘Ford dealer’ in their local area. Additionally, only one of these dealerships has ‘used car dealer’ listed as a category despite all three selling used cars, and it is also the only one of the three to list ‘mechanic’ as a service that they offer. Below is the full list of categories available to car dealerships and those in the auto industry.

Franchise Car Dealer

  • Acura Car Dealer

  • Audi Dealer

  • BMW Dealer

  • Buick Dealer

  • Cadillac Dealer

  • Chevrolet Dealer

  • Chrysler Dealer

  • Dodge Dealer

  • Fiat Dealer

  • Ford Dealer

  • GMC Dealer

  • Honda Dealer

  • Hyundai Dealer

  • Infiniti Dealer

  • Isuzu Dealer

  • Jaguar Dealer

  • Jeep Dealer

  • Kia Dealer

  • Land Rover Dealer

  • Lexus Dealer

  • Lincoln Mercury Dealer

  • Mazda Dealer

  • Mercedes Benz Dealer

  • Mitsubishi Dealer

  • Nissan Dealer

  • Opel Dealer

  • Pontiac Dealer

  • Porsche Dealer

  •  
  •  
  •  
 

Auto Other

  • Auto Accessories Wholesaler

  • Auto Air Conditioning Service

  • Auto Auction

  • Auto Body Parts Supplier

  • Auto Broker

  • Auto Chemistry Shop

  • Auto Dent Removal Service

  • Auto Electrical Service

  • Auto Glass Shop

  • Auto Insurance Agency

  • Auto Machine Shop

  • Auto Market

  • Auto Parts Manufacturer

  • Auto Parts Market

  • Auto Parts Store

  • Auto Restoration Service
  •  
  • Auto Spring Shop

  • Auto Sunroof Shop

  • Auto Tag Agency

  • Auto Tune-Up Service

  • Auto Upholsterer

  • Auto Wrecker

  • Automation Company

  • Automobile Storage Facility

  • Car Accessories Store

  • Car Battery Shop

  • Car Bodywork Mechanic

  • Car Radiator Repair Service

  • Car Rental Agency
  •  
  • Car Repair & Maintenance

  • Car Security System Installer

  • Car Service

  • Racing Car Parts Store

  • Tuning Automobile

  • Used Auto Parts Store

Car Category

  • Car Dealer
  •  
  • Car Finance and Loan Company
  •  
  • Car Repair and Maintenance
  •  
  • Car Service
  •  
  • Motor Vehicle Dealer
  •  
  • Race Car Dealer
  •  
  • Salvage Dealer
  •  
  • Used Car Dealer

The implications are clear: without the correct categories listed, all three dealerships are missing out on potential leads that could impact their bottom line. Google gives you the option of listing 1 primary category and 9 secondary categories, all of which will expose you to customers searching for those terms.

Although it is only a minor oversight, it could be costing them tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars in lost business. Below is another example, this time showing a caravan dealer who has the wrong primary category listed.

Again, these are small mistakes that are easily overlooked but their potential cost to your business cannot be understated. In this instance, this dealer will struggle to show up for anyone searching for ‘caravan dealer’ because it is not listed as their primary service, meaning Google will not prioritise it in search results for that term. 

Incorrect GBP Categories Could Be Hurting Your Brand

Another potential danger is that by listing the wrong GBP category, you could actually be hurting your brand and frustrating your customers. This is an issue that we encounter constantly with OEMs and vehicle manufacturers – the example below is of a caravan manufacturer who have themselves listed as a caravan dealer.

And now the same for a Yamaha dealer, who had themselves listed only as a ‘motorcycle dealer’, as well as several other secondary categories.

 

While this may seem like a simple and harmless mistake, it can have serious consequences. In this instance, the manufacturer was having customers regularly show up at their factory having expected to find a dealership – a fact that was made all the more frustrating for the customers by having often driven an hour or more to get there. The result was a bad first experience for customers, and one that could potentially discourage them from ever doing business with the OEM.

For reference, here are all of the categories available for caravans and other recreational vehicles, such as motorbikes and boats. Clients in the trucking and agricultural industries are guilty of this as well, and they often miss out on valuable search exposure by pigeonholing themselves and neglecting the other aspects of their service that they provide beyond vehicle sales.

Caravan Dealers

  • RV Dealer

  • Caravan Repair Shop

  • RV Storage Facility 

  • RV Supply Store

  • Mobile Home Dealer

  • Camping Store

  • Campervan & Caravan Dealer

  • Caravan Supply Shop

  • Recreational Vehicle Rental Agency

  • Consignment Shop

  • Manufacturer

 

Motorbike Dealers

  • ATV Dealer

  • ATV Rental Service

  • ATV Repair Shop

  • Motorcycle Dealer

  • Moped Dealer

  • Motor Scooter Dealer

  • Used Motorcycle Dealer

  • Golf Cart Dealer

  • BMW Motorcycle Dealer

  • Ducati Dealer

  • Harley-Davidson Dealer

  • Kawasaki Motorcycle Dealer

  • Suzuki Motorcycle Dealer

  • Triumph Motorcycle Dealer

  • Yamaha Motorcycle Dealer

  • Motorcycle Parts Store

  • Motorcycle Driving School

  • Motorcycle Insurance Agency

  • Motorcycle Rental Agency

  • Motorcycle Repair Shop

  • Motorcycle Shop

  • Lawn Mower Store

  • Motor Scooter Repair Shop

  • Garden Machinery Supplier

  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
 

Boat Dealers

  • Boat Dealer

  • Boat Trailer Dealer

  • Diesel Engine Dealer

  • Boat Accessories Supplier

  • Boat Cover Supplier

  • Boat Accessories Supplier

  • Boat Builders

  • Boat Rental Service

  • Boat Repair Shop

  • Boat Storage Facility

  • Outboard Motor Store

  • Water Sports Equipment Rental Service

  •  

  •  
  •  
 

Clients in the trucking and agricultural industries are guilty of this as well, and they often miss out on valuable search exposure by pigeonholing themselves and neglecting the other aspects of their service that they provide beyond vehicle sales.

The example below only lists themselves as a tractor dealer, when they could also include the following secondary categories: ATV dealer, ATV repair shop, construction machine dealer, construction machine rental service, farm equipment repair service, farm equipment supplier, tractor equipment supplier, tractor repair shop, garden machinery supplier.

Here are all of the categories that are available to trucking, agricultural and trailer businesses:

Truck Dealers

  • Truck Dealer

  • Truck Parts Supplier

  • Truck Rental Agency

  • Truck Repair Shop

  • Truck Topper Supplier

  • Truck Wash

  • Used Truck Dealer

 

Agricultural & Construction Equipment Dealers

  • Construction Machine Dealer

  • Construction Machine Rental Service

  • Crane Dealer

  • Crane Rental Agency

  • Dairy Farm Equipment Supplier

  • Diesel Engine Dealer

  • Drilling Equipment Supplier

  • Farm Equipment Repair Service

  • Farm Equipment Supplier

  • Fence Supply Store

  • Forklift Dealer

  • Irrigation Equipment Supplier

  • Lawn Equipment Rental Service

  • Lawn Mower Store

  • Material Handling Equipment Supplier

  • Mining Equipment

  • Power Plant Equipment Supplier

  • Pumping Equipment & Service

  • Towing Equipment Provider

  • Tractor Dealer

  • Tractor Equipment Supplier

  • Tractor Repair Shop

  • Garden Machinery Supplier

  •  

Trailer Dealers

  • Boat Trailer Dealer

  • Trailer Hitch Supplier

  • Trailer Manufacturer

  • Trailer Rental Service

  • Trailer Repair Shop

  • Trailer Supply Store

  • Trailer Manufacturer

  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
 

We Can Help You To Clarify Your Categories

As you can see, this is an issue that affects dealers and OEMs right across the industry, and usually it’s for the same simple reason: they didn’t know about it. It’s easy to get caught up in the day-to-day operations of your business, and with literally hundreds of GBP categories to choose from, it can be hard to know whether you have made the right selections or are missing out on any potential opportunities.

That’s why it’s worth talking to the experts. As specialists in the automotive industry, we’ve worked with hundreds of dealers and dozens of OEMs to fix the problems that are plaguing their business, and we can do the same for you. The world has gone digital and in order to succeed, you need to adapt to the new rules of the game.

If you think that your business might be suffering from a lack of digital strategy, or if you just want to know more about what we can offer, get in touch with us to arrange a no-obligation chat.

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