As some parts of the country are starting to gradually open back up after more than two months of COVID-19 quarantine, it’s more important than ever for apartment communities to remain visible online. Stay-at-home orders vary depending on the location, so it’s crucial to communicate clearly and offer up-to-date information about your community, including hours of operation.
Over the last few months, Google My Business and Facebook have played critical roles in helping apartment communities keep prospects updated during the pandemic. For example, both platforms added temporary options for businesses to add to their listings, such as virtual tours. Also, they both added a “COVID-19 update” option for businesses to communicate any additional information related to the virus.
As the pandemic subsides and businesses start to gradually reopen, apartment communities will need to revert back to the standard GMB and Facebook listings. Having robust profiles on both platforms during this reopening phase will help your apartment community’s visibility remain strong.
Read on to learn what property managers and apartment marketers should be doing now on GMB and Facebook as we look ahead to the next stage of the pandemic.
How to Optimize Your Apartment Community’s GMB Listing
Thoroughly fleshing out your apartment GMB listing can keep prospective residents informed and boost visibility in local search results. Here’s what to do:
Fill in all of the requested profile information. This includes hours of operation and a business description. You can edit your profile by logging into your dashboard, clicking “Info” and clicking the pencil icon next to the field you want to edit.
Add photos. These include a business profile photo and a cover photo. The cover photo is important because it’s the most prominent image in your listing. Google recommends adding a minimum of three other photos, too, in order to make your listing more informative and engaging. Keep in mind that listings with photos can have 35% more clicks to their websites.
Replace your COVID posts with regular ones. These posts appear directly on the search engine results page, and they’re visible for seven days. It’s an easy way to drive business, share special offers, news and other updates about your apartment community.
Respond to reviews. Google reviews were temporarily suspended due to the pandemic, but they’re starting to reappear on listings. Responding to your apartment reviews is crucial because Google is the most important local review site, and reviews factor into your listing’s local search ranking. Prospects are watching how you respond to reviews as they decide if your apartment community is safe to visit.
Don’t overlook the Q&A section. This is an opportunity to be proactive in sharing pertinent information about your apartment community.
How to Get the Most From Your Apartment Community’s Facebook Profile
In addition to Google, Facebook also carries considerable clout when it comes to a business’ online visibility and reputation. Facebook offered tools for businesses to use in connection with COVID-19, such as new hours of operation. As things gradually go back to normal, take these steps to maintain your apartment community’s online reputation:
Reply to reviews. A Facebook apartment review will receive more attention compared to other review sites due to Facebook’s influence on social media. Being attentive and responding to each apartment review in a timely manner will show that you value great customer service.
Respond to comments, feedback and questions sent through Messenger. Customers expect a response, and most want a reply within 24 hours at the latest. If you delay, or don’t reply at all, it could lead to negative apartment reviews and you could lose business to a competitor.
Engage, engage, engage. Shares, comments and likes are all types of engagement that can help boost an apartment community’s reputation and visibility. Posting useful content, taking a poll, and asking followers questions are all easy ways to elevate your apartment community’s reputation and show that you care about your residents.