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Google My Business Guide for Local Businesses – Part 1

 

The myriad of Google products out there can be downright confusing.  Especially when it comes to Google +, Google My Business and Google Maps.  These three have the potential to make a huge impact on your local rankings if taken advantage of.  

Bottom line.  If you want to rank locally in Google, then it is recommended that you take advantage of Google’s products that will help you rank locally.  

Step 1: Create a Gmail account to use for your business.

Before you can utilyze Google’s suite of products, you will need your own Gmail account.  You can either login to an existing account, or create a new one to use for your business.  

Create a new gmail account or login HERE

Step 2: Find your Business on Google.

First, see if your business listing already exists on Google.  Even if you didn’t create a profile for your business, Google is notorious for listings automatically being created and populated with information based on other people’s searches.  Go to maps.google.com and enter your business name and address:

Go find your business HERE

Yay – You’re on Google!

If your business listing already exists, you’ll see a page like this populated with your business information:

But you’re not done yet! Let’s take a closer look at the profile to make sure it’s complete:

 

    1. Claim This Business: If you have not already, do it now! Just click the link and follow the prompts.
    2. Add Hours, Website, and 5 Photos: The more information you have here will result in better results.
    3. Get 5 Reviews! These are a direct ranking factor and WILL improve search results.  Stay tuned and I’ll show you how to get reviews!

 

 

 

 Awe 🙁 Not on Google?

If your business HAS NOT been added to Google, then you’ll most likely see these results:

If after typing in your business information, you see the “Add a missing place to Google” CTA, chances are you will need to add your business to Google. Go ahead and follow the prompt by clicking “Add a missing place to Google maps”. Simply fill out the information and “Submit”

One very important point to remember here is that every bit of information you add about your business matters and should be 100% CONSISTENT EVERYWHERE IN THE UNIVERSE.  Discrepancies in your business Name, Phone, Address and Website can and will cause lower rankings and online visibility.  Consistency is key!

 

Step 3: Verify your Business on Google

Above, we already looked at 2 ways to find and verify your business.

  1. If your business listing already exists, but the profile has a link to “Verify This Business.”, then proceed to click the link and follow the prompts.
  2. If your business does NOT exist on Google, then enter your business information as shown above.  Once entered, you will be prompted to verify.

The verification process takes 14 business days.  Google will send a postcard to the address of the business.  

 

Once it arrives, you will find your PIN on the back.  Simply login to your Google My Business account and enter the PIN.

See Google’s Support Guide for Google My Business HERE

Boom! You’re Verified! A few more steps to go…

Once your business is verified, here are a few more steps that will help with overall visibility and search rankings.

  1. Place a   icon on your website that links back to your new, verified Google Plus page.
  2. Make sure that your homepage is listed as the website on your GMB and G+ profiles.
  3. Get Reviews!

In Part 2, we will walk you through how to get great reviews for your business! Feel free to message us on Facebook, or leave your questions and comments below. 

See how Braun Digital Marketing can improve your presence online.

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