With an increase in the use of the internet and entrepreneurs, it is important to make your business more feasible and known. One of the ways to achieve this is by creating and verifying your business account with Google My business listing. Google My Business, otherwise known as GMB, is a tool used by organizations, companies and business owners to manage their business appearance on google search and map, by helping customers find their business.
Google my business is a free and easy- to- use tool. A lot of customers today use google to find out about available and accessible products or services needed by them. Google my business is the most common and a huge business listing sites among others, which are;
Yelp, Foursquare, YellowPages, Facebook, Bing Local, LinkedIn CitySearch, Manta, Instagram, Angie’s List, SuperPages, Yellowbot, Yahoo Local and others.
How to create a Google My Business listing;
Go to your Google account if you already have one, or sign up to create a Google account.
Follow the page, google.com/business and click on “start now”.
Input your Business name. If there is an existing Business name as yours, it will be indicated by the auto-complete function. This is done to avoid accidental input of a Business name owned by another.
Add your business location for a delivery service that requires face-to-face communication. For services area businesses, two options are available. The first is where customers can be received at the business location. You will enter the address, click on the box, and enter “next”.
The second option is when you don’t have an address where customers can locate you physically. Leave the address spaces and tick on the box. Then click on “Hide my address (it’s not a store)”. However, you will need to enter a region or ZIP codes that your business serves.
The next step is choosing your business category. It is important to accurately choose a business category. It will help tell google which type of customers should see your business listing.
Add your Website and business phone contact.
Make a decision on the verification method you want to apply with. If you are not ready yet, you can try a different method later.
Verifying your business on google
Google needs to ascertain the details, by verifying your Google business listing. Here are different types of google my business verification, in which you will have to choose a method that is best applicable to you:
- Phone verification
- Email Verification
- Instant Verification
- Bulk Verification
Phone Verification – Some businesses are allowed to verify listing through the phone. If eligible, phone Verification will be displayed when you start the process. Be sure your phone contact is correct, as you will be sent a message with a code that should be entered into your google my business.
Email Verification – like phone Verification, this is only allowed for some businesses. If you are eligible, email Verification will be seen at the beginning of verification. Be sure the email provided is accessible. A verification link will be sent to the email connected with your Google My Business. Check the email and click on the link sent to verify your GMB listing.
Postcard – This is the most used verification process, which is applicable to all businesses. Be sure your business address is correct, as the Verification code will be sent to the address given in the GMB account (it is mostly delivered within fourteen days). After receiving the code, you then log into your Google My Business account, enter the code, and submit. If the code is delayed further, another code can be requested for, by signing in to Google My Business. If more than one address is connected to your GMB account, click on the address you want to verify before inputting the five-digit verification code on the postcard.
Instant Verification – Instant verification is enabled for a business that has been verified with Google Search Console. Google search console is a tool that helps manage your search performance. The same account used to verify your business with Google Search Console should be input into your Google My Business.
Bulk Verification – This is available for businesses operating in more than ten locations. Log into your GMB account, click on a location, and then “Get Verified”. Click on “Chain”, then fill out the verification form appropriately and submit.
Your Google My Business listing can be optimized after verification by logging into your account and click on the info to fill out or update several sections. To optimize your Google My Business, you can:
- Write a business description that gets customers attention
- Add photos and Videos – This can be done by having a media section that showcases your products and services.
- Use the Google My Business App in updating your location, business hours, attributes and contact information.
- Start managing Goggle reviews
- Understand your audience by using the Goggle My Business Question and Answers.
Benefits of Google My Business Listing
- It helps increase potential customers’ chances of finding you by improving your presence online.
- It’s a tool that is useful for engaging with your customers for free, via their phone or computer.
- It helps you interact better with customers – Response to customers review and pictures posted concerning your business help you and your customers to relate well. It also helps customers to reserve a table directly from your link.
- It helps you identify how customers search for your business, how many people contact your phone contact from that displayed on Google search or map and where the customers are from.
- It helps display useful information and helps customers find out your business physical location.
- Stand out from other competitors – Google My Business profile helps customers to identify the uniqueness of your product/service.
- It helps you know more about your business, because the more you understand your customers, the more you will be able to appeal to them. This is also a means to determine how far and well your business has gone. It will also help determine if it is needed to modify your business or not.
- Star ratings will also help boost your appeal.
- Earn customers trust – Customers sometimes find it difficult believing in the quality of products or services online. It’s your responsibility to convince your customers on why they should order your products or services.