Google has essentially taken the place that the Yellow Pages once held. People use the basic search engine and Google Maps to find businesses they’re interested in, whether that business is local or international. However, just like the Yellow Pages, getting your name on Google’s list is an opt-in process. This means you have to engage with Google and create your own listing if you want people to find it and use a local search to see your customer rating, hours, website, phone number, and other details. And it all starts with Google My Business.
Where To Start
Starting on Google My Business is easy. The link is https://www.google.com/business/, and the first thing you’ll do is either find the basic business listing Google already has or create a listing by providing your company name and business address. Once you do that, you can fill in details like your website’s address, the kind of industry you’re in, what kind of meals you offer if you’re a restaurant, business hours, and so on. Once you click the Save button, you’re already up and running.
Understand How It Works
Unlike an ad in the Yellow Pages, your business profile on Google is open for anyone to edit. This means that customers, former employees, or random people on the internet can edit details like the days you’re open, the images associated with your business, and what kind of services you offer. This function is open to the public so Google can have the most accurate information possible even about businesses that don’t update their profile, but it also means bad actors can vandalize your profile if you don’t pay attention.
Learn How To Optimize
Your Google My Business account includes a lot of useful features if you know how to use them. You can write posts that will appear on your business listing, which means you can use the space to advertise or make people aware of upcoming events or product launches. Be sure to update regularly, because after seven days each post “goes dark” and becomes harder to find. You can also fill your business listing with high-quality images of your business, your menu or list of services, and other attractive details.
Receive Direct Feedback
Aside from providing a business platform, Google listings also have a place where customers can review your business and provide feedback. Staying active on Google lets you see these reviews and respond to them directly if they bring up something you want to fix. This can improve your rank and encourage future visitors since they know you care about your customers.
As a small business, it’s good to take advantage of every bit of visibility and advertisement you can get. Google My Business provides a free platform to get your name out there to hundreds or thousands of potential customers, and small businesses can manage this listing for free. And if you need help maximizing your Google business profile or other online tasks, contact ignitedLOCAL and discover the many ways we can help your company grow.