Google My Business can be extremely helpful for your business and like it or not, when potential customers and clients look up our businesses online, as business owners, we need to take care of how our business appears on Google.
A My Business listing on Google allows you control what people see when they search for your business online.
There are many free and easy to use tools you can use to maximise our appearance and grow awareness of our business online, in addition to ensuring you have a responsive website which is optimised for SEO and has an SSL cert.
For any website project I work on, I always ensure my clients have claimed their business on Google. Being a marketer for many years before web design, I find both jobs go hand in hand. One is useless without the other.
Here's a more in-depth overview of Google My Business:
So what do businesses need to take care of in order to control how they appear on Google?
Here's what I will be covering:
To claim your business listing on Google, simply search for your business with Google. If your business has not yet been verified, you will see a link - 'Own this business'.
Clicking this will start the verification process.
To verify that you’re an authorised representative for the business, follow the steps below:
Here's a video of the verification process.
Once the business has been verified, you can add posts to your business and they will appear in search.
These posts expire after 1 week so its good practice to post one a week.
Engage your audience by sharing updates and announcements by posting images, events, offers, products and videos. Choose the type of call to action you want to appear. Learn more about Google Posts.
Keeping your opening dates and hours up to date is an important task for all businesses.
Add the hours your business is open (i.e. the regular customer-facing hours of operation for a typical week). For days when you have unusual hours, like holidays or special events, set special hours. Learn more about hours guidelines.
To set hours, follow these steps:
To indicate your business hours include a break, create 2 time entries for the same day with different times.
For example, if your business is open from 9 AM–2 PM on Saturdays, closed from 2 PM–5 PM, then open again from 5 PM–10 PM:
If your business is open 24 hours a day, next to the day click Opens at, then click and choose 24 hours.
To change your hours for holidays or other special event times, follow these steps.
This goes for reviews on Facebook and Trip Advisor, if it's applicable for your business.
People take the time to review your business so its good manners and the right thing to respond.
You can only respond to your reviews on Google once you have been verified.
Reviews from your customers can provide valuable feedback for your business, and replying to reviews can help build your customers' trust.
When you reply to a review, your response will appear below your customer's review on Google Search and Maps under the label "Response from the owner".
People on Google will see both the customer review and your response when they look at your Google reviews.
include requests for reviews in emails. Make it part of your daily workflow in your business.
Create a link that customers can click to leave a review of your business.
You can easily share the link with customers to encourage them to write reviews and rate your business.
There are two ways you can get your review url:
To create a link from Google Search:
If these steps don't work for you, you'll need to use the PlaceID Lookup Tool instead.
To create a link using the PlaceID Lookup Tool:
When customers click your link, they'll be able to rate your business and leave a review. Further reading from Google on how to read and reply to customer reviews.
Displaying your current reviews on your website allows you to gain trust with your sites visitors by providing social proof.
Keeping things up to date and looking good takes a bit of effort and consistency.
If you would like some help, just get in touch and let me do the work for you.
Find out how to start driving more traffic through the door today by getting your business more discoverable on Google.