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Websites vs. Google my Business: Who Consumers Trust More

There’s new research that suggests that when it comes to consumer trust local business websites hold more weight than Google my Business listings. This was acknowledged when Bright Local created a comparison report in which they looked at the way consumers were using Google my Business listings, local business websites, and business directories when they were searching for information or answers they needed online. Of course, this is only one of the many things that was discovered by this investigative report.

Findings Regarding Search Behavior

There are many types of businesses in your neighborhood – many of which people go onto Google to search for because they don’t know they’re there. Some of the most commonly searched for businesses include:

  • 56% search for restaurants and cafes – something that probably comes as no surprise
  • 37% search for grocery stores
  • 34% search for clothing stores, hotels, and B&Bs
  • 28% search for medical practices and other healthcare practitioners

Findings Regarding Consumer Expectations

Another question that Bright Local took into consideration was what sources consumers believed had the most accurate, up-to-date information. The findings here showed that:

  • 56% said they expect local business’ websites to have the most accurate and up-to-date information
  • 32% said they expect Google my Business to have the most accurate and up-to-date information
  • 12% said they expect directories to have the most accurate and up-to-date information

Findings Regarding the Most Commonly Used Google My Business Features

It’s also interesting to take note of what features clients are using most. While no percentages were tracked it’s still interesting to take note of these various things, which include:

  • Checking on what hours a business is open and what hours most people frequent the business
  • Looking for directions on how to get to a business
  • Reading reviews about the business so they knew what to expect before visiting the business
  • Taking time to review the business’ website before visiting the business in person
  • Looking at the business’ photo to see what their products and services look like
  • Booking a hotel room when traveling or making plans to travel
  • Making reservations to eat at a restaurant
  • Clicking on the “call” button in the Google My Business listing to easily reach someone at the business
  • Leaving a review once they’ve visited the business so they can share their good or bad experience with other people

Findings Regarding how Often People Checked a Website Before Visiting a Local Business

Bright Local also asked those whom they surveyed how often they look at the business’ website before going to the business in person. According to the responses:

  • 76% said that at least half of the time they’ll look at the business’ website
  • 22% claimed to look at the business’ website every time
  • 8% admitted that they never look at a business’ website

Findings Regarding the Biggest Website Errors

Considering that about 84% of people rarely, if ever, look at a business’ website it’s interesting to find out what the reason behind this is. According to Bright Local’s study these reasons include:

  • The contact and pricing information on the website is out-of-date
  • Sometimes there isn’t any pricing information given
  • The content is poorly written, containing typos and grammatical mistakes
  • It’s difficult to find the website in the SERPs

These are just some of the things you should be thinking about when you’re working on your SEO.


There’s a lot of information here for you to “digest.” If you’re like most people, it can seem somewhat overwhelming. Fortunately, this is something the professionals at ISEOU deal with daily. They not only know these facts, but they also know how to implement them to help websites be more successful. When you’re ready to get some help with your SEO so you can see your website increase in the SERPs, contact them. They’re ready and willing to help!

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