How to Optimize Your Place of Worship’s Google Business Profile

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Here is an alphabetized starter list I’ve put together of common categories for a variety of places of worship, but if you don’t see your best choice on this list, search PlePer to see if it exists. If not, you’ll need to choose the closest possible option for your primary category:

  • Abbey

  • Abundant Life church

  • Alliance church

  • Anglican church

  • Apostolic church

  • Armenian church

  • Assemblies of God church

  • Baha’i house of worship

  • Baptist church

  • Buddhist temple

  • Calvary Chapel church

  • Catholic church

  • Chapel

  • Christian church

  • Church

  • Church of Christ

  • Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

  • Church of the Nazarene

  • Congregation

  • Conservative synagogue

  • Deaf church

  • Disciples of Christ church

  • Eastern Orthodox church

  • Episcopal church

  • Evangelical church

  • Foursquare church

  • Friends church

  • Full Gospel church

  • Gospel church

  • Greek Orthodox church

  • Gurudwara

  • Hindu temple

  • Hispanic church

  • Jain temple

  • Jehovah’s Witness Kingdom Hall

  • Korean church

  • Lutheran church

  • Mennonite church

  • Messianic synagogue

  • Methodist church

  • Monastery

  • Moravian church

  • Mosque

  • New Age church

  • Non-denominational church

  • Orthodox church

  • Orthodox synagogue

  • Parsi temple

  • Pentecostal church

  • Place of worship

  • Presbyterian church

  • Protestant church

  • Quaker church

  • Reform synagogue

  • Reformed church

  • Religious destination

  • Religious institution

  • Religious lodging

  • Religious organization

  • Russian Orthodox church

  • Seventh-day Adventist church

  • Shinto shrine

  • Shrine

  • Synagogue

  • Taoist temple

  • Unitarian Universalist church

  • United Church of Canada

  • United Church of Christ

  • United Methodist church

  • Unity church

  • Vineyard church

  • Wedding chapel

  • Wesleyan church

Once you’ve chosen your primary category, you are welcome to add additional categories if they apply to your organization. For example, an Anglican church might also choose “religious institution,” and “place of worship,” and “wedding chapel” if those categories apply. The very important guidelines for representing your business on Google recommend that you avoid redundant categories. In other words, if you’ve already selected “Episcopal church” as your primary category, Google suggests you do not also select the less specific “church” as a secondary category.

However, there is no known penalty for being redundant in categories as long as they are relevant to your place of worship, and some SEOs feel it’s a best practice to choose as many appropriate categories as possible. The choice is yours, but do be certain your primary category is the most specific one. Miscategorized listings will have trouble ranking for the appropriate searches. Questions about proper categorization often bring up the following FAQ:

How many listings should I have?

If there is just one building on your property, chances are, you are only eligible for one Google listing. However, an FAQ for places of worship that relates to categorization is what to do if your location has more than one type of destination on it. For example, what if your church’s property also has a rentable reception hall, a school, and a religious gift store? Should you find categories that reflect those resources and add them to your main listing for your church, or can you have a separate listing for each of these entities?

If a facet of your organization on the property has its own name, public entrance, phone number, and either its own page on your website or its own website, it is likely eligible for its own separate Google Business Profile. For example, St. Rose School and St. Rose Church may be on the same property, but they are two distinct entities. The same could apply to St. Rose Religious Gift Shop or St. Rose Event Hall. You can create a unique listing for each of these and only choose those categories for each listing that apply to each unique facility.

If, however, St. Rose Church also has a small chapel on its grounds that is used by the clergy and congregation for baptisms, but there isn’t a separate phone number for it because it’s really just an extension of the larger church, then this would be a case it which you wouldn’t typically build a separate listing but would add the secondary category, “chapel” to the main listing for the church.

These questions can be complex, and the section in Google’s guidelines on departments within other businesses, universities, and institutions can be very helpful in determining the right path for your place of worship.

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