You probably might have Googled a service or a product before, and instead of seeing websites, the result pages that Google returned contained business listings with addresses, names, and phone numbers of the businesses. When you click on each of the business listings, you’ll be able to see more info about the business, its owners, and reviews of customers who have interacted with them before. In fact, there’s a rating, and anyone with a Google account can rate the business.
Those are Google My Business (GMB) listings and it is a very powerful local SEO tool. Creating a Google. If well implemented, your website can make it to search engine pages when people use search terms related to your product or service offerings. If you run a local business and you have a website, one of the best things you can do to attract more organic customers is to set up and optimize your Google My Business page. Research already shows that about 50% of Google search queries are related to local businesses.
In this post, we’ll walk you through how to create a Google My Business page for your website. It is actually easy.
1. Create a Google account
Like every other Google service, you need a Google account to enjoy this service. If you don’t have one, simply create a new one. It is free and straightforward. Just head over to this place, and select the “To manage a business” option.
Create a new Gmail account or use an existing email address to sign in. Go through the verification exercise to proceed to the next step.
2. Continue from the Google My Business page
After setting up your email address, go to the Google My Business page and click “Manage Now” to start the setup process. Whenever you need to make any changes to your page, you’ll have to come back here, so you might as well save it as a bookmark. Again, this is completely free of charge.
Here, you’ll enter your business name. Watch out for the suggestions while supplying your name to avoid duplicate entries. Yes - it is possible that someone has already claimed your business. Otherwise, go ahead to enter your name or add a new Google My Business profile to an existing business, that is if you have opened a new location for your business.
3. If your business is already claimed
If the business profile you’re about to claim has already been claimed, there might still be a way out. Click the “Request access” button, fill out the form with as much detail as possible and submit it. Google will notify you will an email and will contact the email currently linked to that business. Next, you have to wait it out. Luckily, if the ownership is returned to you, you’ll be able to proceed. Otherwise, you might need to modify the business profile information.
Alternatively, you can reach out to the GMB Help Community and get advice from one of their volunteers.
4. Enter a business location
This is a necessity for businesses that deliver services and products to customers at a physical business location. If your business does not interact face-to-face with customers, then you can tick the “Hide my address (it’s not a store)” button. In the next step, all Service Area Businesses that deliver goods and services directly to your customer will be able to specify a service area.
When you specify the areas you serve, you’ll enable Google to accurately list your business for searches in those areas, with or without a physical address. Here, you’ll enter the regions, cities, and ZIP codes that your business serves. This is important before you can choose your business category.
5. Choose your business category
This field is very important, as it will influence the search terms that you’ll rank for. In addition to that, choosing a business category determines the search terms that will show up within your Google My Business profile. You can always go back and make changes to this. For a better idea of what to choose, you can check the full list of categories to understand which ones are most relevant to your business.
Meanwhile, keep in mind that some Google My Business features are category-specific. This means that there are certain features you’ll see depending on the kind of business you do. For example, hotel listings show class ratings as well as other amenities available. Health and beauty services can even add a booking button to their listing. From time to time, you need to check to know which new features have been added or updates made to GMB to enable you to make the most of your listing.
6. Add a contact phone number and website URL
This is one of the most important features of your listing. Also, ensure that the information you supply on your Google My Business profile is the same as in every other business listing you have. And if you ever need to update this information on your Google business, also do the same to those other listings.
7. Proceed to verification
At this point, you have completed the setup, but there’s one more thing left before you begin using it. Google will need to verify that all the information you entered is correct. For this, you can use the three options available to complete the verification exercise: you can use postcard verification, phone verification, or email verification. The instructions are pretty straightforward.
You can also use instant verification (for those that have already verified their business’s website with Google Search Console) or bulk verification, which is for businesses managing ten or more locations.
8. Optimize your Google My Business!
After verification, you can use the many optimization options to improve your GMB profile. You can add photos, use the Q&A, start requesting reviews, and so on. For a detailed guide on how to optimize your Google My Business listing, you can check our blog post on this topic. Keep in mind that having a Google My Business profile is very important for SEO, and so is optimizing your profile.
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