For local businesses, being discoverable on Google is a must for drawing in more customers. While Google remains a tough nut to crack for businesses and marketers alike, they do provide some tools to make it easier for you to boost your local SEO standings. One of these tools is Google My Business.
Chances are that you’ve clicked on a business on Google Maps at some point. When you do, you see a box full of useful information about that business; their address, opening hours, reviews, photos, and more. All of this comes from a Google My Business listing. Companies can register with Google to ensure that all the relevant information is available to anyone searching for them nearby.
Yes, it’s completely free to set up your Google My Business listing, as long as you have a local presence. This means that Google My Business is not a service for companies that operate 100% online. As long as you have a physical shop or offices where you interact with customers or clients, then you can set up a listing.
Your first step is to visit google.com/business and log in to or create a Google account for your company.
You will then be prompted to enter information about your business, starting with its name. If your company is already recognised by Google, then you can “claim” your company. If not, then you will create it. You’ll then continue to add more information about your business, such as:
You will then be prompted to verify your business, which can be done in a number of ways. They can send you a postcard by mail, call you, or send you an email to verify your business, for example.
Once you’re verified, your listing is ready. Google users can now start to view your business listing online and also leave you reviews and comments via Google.
Optimising your Google My Business listing will help you get found online by people conducting relevant, local searches. It can also improve your conversion rate among users that discover your listing.
The easiest way to optimise your listing is to fill out as many details as possible. Someone might choose to not visit your shop if opening hours aren’t listed because they don’t want a wasted trip if you’re not open. Keywords are also important in your listing, so the more info you add, the more chance you have at fitting in those keywords.
Photos are also a big part of optimisation, especially for places with a visual appeal like restaurants. If someone’s deciding where to eat, all those photos of the delicious food you serve could tempt them. According to Google, business listings with photos get a 35% increase in clicks to their website compared to those without photos.
If you’re looking for more visitors in your store or more enquiries through your website, then a Google My Business listing is the way to go. If you need any help setting up or optimising your listing, then we can help.