Most online searches are done through Google.
There are two ways to see the Google My Business information about your business:
- When searching for a local business category, "Campbell River Plumbers" for example, Google will display a map on the search results page. This map displays local businesses that have a Google My Business Listing. Usually the top three are shown in full but if you click the map, more will be displayed.
- When searching for a business name, "Vancouver Island Designs" for example, Google will display your business information in a box on the right side of the screen.
These are both great ways to put your information in front of people that are searching for businesses like yours. The format and functionality of the content displayed makes it easy for users to interact with your business for things like writing a review.
Google reviews are a valuable resource.
Encourage your clients to write a Google review of your business. They'll need a gmail or google account to login to write the review but the process is easy and starts with clicking the Write a Review button on your Google My Business information box.
Why is all of this important?
- When users google the keywords that are specific to your business, all relevant websites and Google Map listings are shown.
- The placement of the map on the Google Search Results page means that it gets a lot of attention.
- Setting up a Google My Business account adds legitimacy to your business.
Many business are surprised to find they are already listed.
But you need to claim your listing and manage it for the content to be truly effective.
To claim your free Google My Business Listing:
- Google your business name.
If your business has a listing you'll see a box on the right of the screen with some generic details about your business.
- Click the link "Are you the business owner?", under the box and follow the on-screen instructions.
If your business doesn't have a listing:
- Go to Google Maps
- Enter the address of your business. Note: PO Boxes are not allowed. If you don't want your address shown, you'll have an option to use a service area radius and hide your physical address.
- Google Maps will display the businesses, if any that are listed at this location.
- Click Add a Missing Place and follow the on-screen instructions.
Once you've created the account and filled in your business's details, you'll need to verify the business using one of the methods shown on screen. This usually is done by mail or phone number. Once you receive your verification code, enter it where directed and your Google My Business Account and Map Listing will be live.
Now start getting some reviews!