A short guide to Google My Business categories

Dhiraj Nallapaneni

5 min read Last Updated Jul 6, 2022

google my business categories

Google My Business is going to be your first introduction to many of your customers. That’s why it’s important to claim your profile, add accurate contact information, and add the right Google My Business categories. 

But what Google My Business (GMB) categories are right for your business? For many businesses, it might not be immediately clear. Let’s share some facts about Google My Business categories and talk about how you can select the right one for your business.

What are Google My Business categories?

Google My Business categories show both Google and prospective customers what kinds of services you provide. For example, a realtor that also does appraisals can choose categories like “real estate agency” and ”real estate appraiser”. 

Complete list of Google My Business categories

Here is a complete list of Google My Business categories. Just scroll down to view all the categories to see which ones would apply for your business.

View The GMB Categories in Google Sheets

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3 things you should know about Google My Business categories 

Before we start talking about how you can choose your Google My Business categories, here are three things you need to know. 

There is no way that you can create your own category

There is no way that businesses can create their own category. You must use one of the existing Google My Business categories that Google has created.

Google My Business is constantly adding and removing categories 

The list of GMB categories does not stay the same year after year. Google may add or subtract different categories as time goes on. 

Your primary category matters 

While you can choose up to ten categories, the choice that has the most impact is your primary category. Make sure that you choose the primary category that best fits your business services (more on this later). 

Why are Google My Business categories important?

According to Moz, Google My Business is the #1 factor determining your local search ranking. IThe more complete your Google My Business listing, the better chance your business has of ranking on the top of local search. That makes it important to select the right Google My Business categories. 

If you’re in the right Google My Business categories, it will make it more likely that your business will rank higher for relevant searches. If you’re an urgent care facility, you’re much likely to show up in searches for “urgent care” if you have “urgent care” as your primary category. 

Of course, Google My Business categories can hurt you. If you have a category that isn’t an ideal description of your services, it’s going to be much harder for you to get discovered by potential customers. 

How to edit your Google My Business category

 Afraid that you’re going to select the wrong categories for your business? Don’t worry, if you make a mistake, you can always make a change. Here’s how you can make edits to your Google My Business categories.

Here’s how you can make edits to your Google My Business categories.

  1. Sign in to Google My Business.

  2. If you have multiple locations, go to the location whose category you want to change.

  3. Go to the “Info” tab.

  4. Click the pencil icon next to your primary category. This should show up under your business’s name. 

  5. Edit your primary category, or click Add another category. 

When you add or edit your categories, you may be asked to verify your profile again. This helps prevent unauthorized changes from happening. 

How can I pick the right Google My Business category 

Right now, there are more than 3000 Google My Business categories. It’s hard to go through the entire list and pick just a few categories that are right for your business. Here’s how you can make the job easier. 

Use Secondary Categories 

While your primary category holds the most importance when it comes to search ranking, secondary categories can still provide a boost in your search ranking. If you’re an Italian restaurant, you can put “Italian restaurant” as your primary category but also put in “restaurant” or “pizza restaurant” as secondary categories. You are allowed to select up to 9 secondary categories. 

Have a broad focus? 

There are some businesses that have broad focuses. Maybe you’re a contractor who provides a variety of different home services. In this case, you will need to find what one category where you want to attract the most customers. If you decide that you get the most income from plumbing, you can put that as your primary category.

Keep in mind seasonality 

Your business might have different focuses based on different times of the year. For example, a retailer might focus on selling costumes near Halloween but might sell Christmas clothing during the holidays. Make sure that your primary category reflects whatever your business’s current focus is. 

Experiment with your categories 

If you really don’t know which primary category would be best for your business, don’t worry. Just take some time to experiment with different primary categories. You can use Google My Business insights to monitor how often your listing is being viewed over time. Do some tweaking to figure out which categories perform the best for you. 

Want to rank higher on Google? 

Optimizing your Google My Business categories isn’t the only way to rank higher on Google search. Check out our complete guide to optimizing Google My Business.

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