The Ultimate Guide to Google My Business
Did you know that the number one way for potential customers to find your business quickly is also absolutely free? Google My Business (GMB) is the most important online tool for any local business because it increases your businesses exposure in Google…it’s a combination of an online directory and a social media profile.
If you’re a business or professional with a physical location for customers to visit, or if you travel to customers wherever they are, then you qualify for a GMB listing.
Here’s everything you need to know to set up your GMB listing today and start getting the attention of potential customers!
How to Set Up a Google My Business Listing
Here are five tips to help you create an accurate listing:
- Using the Google Account that is associated with your business, go to google.com/business to get started.
- If you have a home office, you can protect your address by clicking “Hide My Address”
- Click the box “I deliver goods and services to my customers” and give the specific range if you make deliveries to customers.
- When choosing your business category, be as precise and detailed as possible so Google can accurately match you with your future customers.
- Triple-check your information to make sure it’s correct.
5 Ways to Verify Your Google My Business Listing
After you set up your GMB, choose one of these ways to verify your listing:
- Postcard - If you choose this method, a postcard will be sent to your business address within 5 days. After you receive the postcard, log in to Google My Business and select the location you want to verify. Now all you have to do is enter the code on the postcard to complete the verification process.
- Phone - If you’re eligible to verify by phone, you’ll receive your verification code via text.
- Email - If you’re able to verify by email, there will be a “Verify by email” button when you begin the verification procedure. Not all businesses are eligible for this option.
- Instant verification - You may be able to instantly verify if your business has already been verified with Google Search Console (this allows you to manage the search performance of your website free of charge). Sign in to your GMB using the same business account you used to verify with GSC…if you don’t see a notification to verify your listing, you’ll need to verify using one of the other methods.
- Bulk verification - This option may be available if you’re NOT a service business or a company that manages locations for several businesses and you manage over 10 locations for the same business. Log into GMB, select a location, then choose “Get verified”. Click “Chain” and fill out the form including the email address of your Google Account Manager. It may take a week after you submit the verification form for Google to review your claim.
Ways to Optimize Your Google My Business Listing
After your business is verified, it’s time to make your listing the best it can be! On the GMB Dashboard, choose the listing you want to improve, click “Info” and select the section you want to fill in or revise. These four tips will help you optimize your listing:
- The more media and information you add, the better your listing will be. Include a business profile picture and important information such as your hours, phone number, website URL and other helpful information like “free wifi” and “wheelchair accessible”.
- Make sure your information is correct since anyone who views your listing can “suggest an edit”. You’ll want to make sure you log into your GMB dashboard occasionally and double-check all your details.
- Adding photos will increase your website activity by 35% according to Google. Your GMB cover photo is very important since it’s the first thing people see on your listing, and your profile photo is seen when you review responses or upload videos and photos. In addition to your cover and profile photos, add any other pictures that you think will interest and inform your potential customers.
- It’s important to respond to the positive reviews on your listing because it makes them stand out, and it encourages new customers to also leave a positive review. Reply to any negative reviews in a polite and professional way to show your customers that you care about them and want to keep their business.
Google My Business is a powerful tool that will help your local business get noticed. Don’t miss out on thousands of potential customers who are searching for services just like yours! If you’d like some guidance or support, contact us today…Evolve Impact Group would be happy to help you make your GMB listing the best it can be!