Google My Business

How to get a google my business listing, optimise it and then use it to drive more local leads and customers to your business.

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By Colin Manson

Google My Business

Your Google My Business (GMB) account lets your business show up when people are looking for you online, in what is called the three pack or map pack at the top of local search results. It’s free to register and use, making it a very affordable tool for marketing your business.

Our in-depth guide will help show you how to get your GMB account up and running, along with offer some helpful tips on how to get the most from it.

“76% of people who search on their smartphones for something nearby visit a business within a day”  (Think With Google)

Table of Contents

Why your business needs a Google My Business

Still not sure if your business needs to have a Google My Business business listing? Then here are some points you may want to look at.

Be discovered online

Everything is found online nowadays; no matter if you run a brick and mortar shop and have never sold anything online, your customers are online. And this is typically where they start their search for the products and services that your company provides and they need or want to buy.

Whether you’re looking for website traffic or foot traffic through the door, Google is the principal place where customers discover businesses that provide what they are looking for. A Google My Business business listing ensures that your company will show up on Local Map Pack, Google Search, and Google Maps when someone looks for a business like yours. Your business listing then shows in the searches where and how to visit your business, whether you have a web or physical address, what time you are open until and if you take appointments.

Having a Google My Business account will also improve your local SEO. When someone searches for your business name or type of business, you should show up on the first page — not on the second page or worse.

Even if you already have a website, a Google My Business business listing ensures you get top results. Having a Google account also provide access to analytics, allowing you to fine-tune your organic SEO and paid advertising strategies.

Keep customers informed

Don’t leave customers guessing about your business’s essential details. Or leave them up to Yell, Cylex, and other review sites over which you have no control. Make sure that when someone searches for your business, they find legitimate information straight from the source.

Your Google My Business business listing includes contact information, business hours, and other essential details. You can post updates to share that you’ve expanded services, temporarily closed, or fully reopened (a handy feature during situations such as the COVID-19 pandemic). Google My Business accounts help bolster your local SEO, so the details you have on there will rank above other sites.

Incomplete or incorrect information on your Google My Business listing, or other places such as directories, can lead to a poor experience for your customers and missed opportunities. Imagine how upset one of your customers would be if they made the journey to your premises only to find that it is not open. Or maybe you are open, but a prospective customer chose one of your competitors because they weren’t sure if you were open or not.

A Google My Business account lets you keep customers informed.

Boost consumer confidence

A Google My Business profile lends credibility to your company. Need proof? Customers are 70% more likely to visit businesses with a Google My Business listing.

Another study found that businesses with complete listings on Google are twice as likely to earn trust from customers.

Trust is a crucial element when it comes to customers making buying decisions. The more confident a customer is, the more likely they are to make a purchase. The credibility of having a Google my business is enough to sway people to be 38% more likely to visit your business and 29% more likely to buy something.

Google My Business reviews help to build trust, as well. Think With Google did research that found that 88% of people trust reviews from online sources nearly as much as friends and family recommendations.

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How to set up your Google My Business

Follow these steps to create your GMB profile.

Step 1: Sign up to Google My Business

To Sign up, go to www.google.com/business. You can sign in with your Google business profile, Gmail account or create a new one at this point. Skip ahead to the next step if you’re already signed in with your Google account.

Tip: Make sure you sign up with a business email (name@mybusiness.com) domain, not a personal account such as SoccerSupastar@gmail.com

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Step 2: Add your business

Enter your companies name in “Type your business name here”. Then, choose the best category for your business; you can select one primary category and another ten subcategories. If this doesn’t show in the drop-down menu, click Add your business to Google

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Step 3: Enter your location.

Suppose you have a physical address that your customers can visit, select Yes. Then input your address. You might be asked to position a marker pin for your business location on a map. If like many during current times, your business does not have somewhere that your customers can come to but offers a service or do deliveries, you can list an area to focus on.

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Step 4: Fill in your contact information.

Enter your phone number and website address so customers can reach you. If for some reason, you use a Facebook page rather than a website, you can add that URL instead….but why would you not have a website????

Step 5: Finish and manage your listing

Click Yes if you would like to receive updates and notifications; they are pretty good in our experience. Then click the Finish button. You’ll then need to verify your business is real.

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How to verify your business on Google

Now that we have your account set up, here’s how to verify your Google My Business. For most companies, verifying a Google my business means requesting a postcard.

Step 1: Sign in to Google My Business

Go to www.google.com/business to sign in.

Step 2: Click Verify now

If you have more than one Google My Business account, make sure you choose the correct one here.

Step 3: How to get verified

Postcard by Mail is the default verification option. If your business is eligible for other methods, such as phone or email, choose the one you prefer. Fill in the required details. Double-check to make sure you’ve entered the details correctly, then submit your details.

It should typically only take a few days for the postcard to arrive; however, with the recent covis19 situation, we have had some take a few weeks. When your postcard comes, sign in to your Google My Business Dashboard account and click Verify location from the menu. Enter the five-digit verification code printed on your postcard.

TIP:  While you’re waiting for it to arrive, why not download the Google My Business app so you can manage your account.

Here is the link to Andriod Google My Business App

Here is the link to the Apple Google My Business App

How to claim your business on Google

Need to claim an existing Google business profile? There are three options:

Option 1: Sign up or log in to Google My Business. Search for your business, and select it. Then follow the steps to confirm that you are the owner.

Option 2: Locate your business listing in Maps, and click Manage this listing.

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Option 3: Look up the business listing in Google Search and click Own this business?.

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Don’t panic if details aren’t accurate. You can edit once you’ve verified that you’re the owner.
If someone else has already claimed the google my business, but you work for the same company, ask them to add you as a user. If you don’t recognise the owner, follow the steps to reclaim your businesses.

How to edit your business on Google

Need to edit information on your Google My Business profile? Here’s how:

  1. Sign in to Google My Business.
  2. Open the location you’d like to edit.
  3. In the menu on the left, click Info.
  4. Click the pencil icon to make your edits. To remove a section, click the X. When you finish, click Apply.

Keep in mind that it can take up to 60 days for the edit to appear. There may be some information from other sources that cannot be edited.

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