To ensure digital marketing success by leveraging a location-based strategy, most of the seasoned SEO professionals often start with creating a Google My Business listing.
Google My Business (GMB)- a free tool from Google that assists business owners to deal with their online presence across the search engine and its portfolio of Utilities- offers the most significant impact for brands seeking local exposure.
Features such as Google’s Local Search results, which break out with a list of adjacent businesses and much of the relevant information needed to find a specific business and potentially buy something, additionally emphasise the need for a GMB listing for new and established businesses.
Google’s Knowledge Graph also uses verified GMB information to help generate details for its database about businesses and alike entities relevant to specific searches.
After creating a new listing, a Google Maps location is generated that synchronises with traditional Google Search for smooth access and searchability. It helps that most organic searches come from Google, further illustrating the value of a GMB listing.
Use this guide to know the basics of Google My Business, starting your GMB listing, and publishing you GMB listing.
Basics of Google My Business
If digital marketing is a new endeavour for you and your business, you need to recognise some basics to ensure you understand Google My Business and the value it offers.
First off: using Google My Business is free. A GMB listing does not replace your business’s website.
Google My Business complements your current website by providing your business with a public identity and presence with a listing on Google. The information you give about your business can appear in Google Maps, Google Search, and on Google+.
If your business has been operating for quite a while, or you have earlier used specific Google tools, chances are your business or brand is already listed on Google My Business. The Google+ Pages Dashboard and Google Places for Business were the best ways to deal with your business information previously, but both have now automatically upgraded to Google’s universal platform, Google My Business.
Starting Your GMB Listing
The first step to getting your GMB listing up and running is to conduct a Google search to make sure that your business does not already have a GMB listing.
In case your business has been around for some years, it is likely it already has a GMB listing. You just need to claim it.
Once claimed, you can manage the information only as if you started the GMB listing yourself in previous years.
Fill out the input boxes with your business details carefully, making sure everything is accurate and grammatically correct, and be sure to find the best relevant category for your business.
Add or Change Service-Area Business Details
To add or edit your service area details, you need to sign in to GMB and ensure you are using “card view”. If you view your locations as a list instead of cards, opt for card view by clicking the card icon on the right side over your location.
- Choose the listing you would like to manage and click “manage location.”
- Click Infor from the menu
- Click the “Address” section
- In the window select “Yes” next to “I deliver goods and services to my clients at their locations.”
- Enter the service area information. The service area can be set according to the cities that you serve, or in a given area around your location.
- Click Apply to save your changes
Verifying Google My Business Listing
After submitting your business info and the service area, you will need to verify your listing. This is essential for the visibility and performance of your business listing.
It is easiest to verify your listing by email. By so doing, Google knows the address you have provided as a business address exists, and you get mail there. This also helps Google weed out the incorrect listings that’ll only misdirect users and derail the usefulness of Google Search and Maps.
It’s vital to recognise that Google will not display your business until the business is verified. The verification process takes less than a week, in which Google will send you a verification card. Once you receive this card, you need to verify the enclosed code, and your business will officially be live.
Publish Your Google My Business Listing
It is essential that you use all resources Google My Business provides within its listing details to get the maximum out of your business locations.