In the internet era, no business can survive without their pages and websites across the internet and social media. These websites are like online business cards for the business. Online presence not only adds up in the revenue effectively in addition to that it also proves the legitimacy of the business.
Google is the biggest search engine, which is why most people use Google from seeking information, online surfing to buying the product. This automatically makes the business page on Google more important than on any other search engine. Google My Business (GMB) is a brilliant opportunity offered by Google to all businesses.
Anyone can list their business on Google using GMB. Once listed, your business location will appear on Google Maps, and all local searches related to your business.
Google My Business is free for everyone, either an organization or a sole proprietorship. It helps to tell people about your business, help them find it, get their reviews, make the Google ranking of business better, and optimize your business’s presence in general.
If you are not using GMB yet, all these and many other benefits are waiting for you. Starting with Google My Business is an easy process and involves a few steps only. The next section will cover every step in detail.
Setting Up a Google My Business Page
1. Create Account / Sign-in
If you already have a GMB account, the first step is straightforward. Just sign-in your account using your e-mail address. If you do not have an existing account, visit https://www.google.com/business/. It will take you to the home page. There click on the ‘Create account’ button. Clicking on this button, two options will appear on the screen
- For myself
- To manage my business
As the page is for business, click on the (ii) option.
2. Finding the business in a listing
After signing up, go to the Google listing and check if the business already exists. If the business is already there, claim it. If it doesn’t exist already in the list, create it.
What if the business profile already exists for the old business?
In case you are registering your new business on GMB, but in Google listing already an old business is listed on the location, do not claim it. Instead, edit the business as closed before you create a new business in Google listing.
3. Create or claim your Google My Business page
Once you find or create a business in a specific location, click on it. Upon clicking, Google will ask you to verify if you are an authorized user to manage this Google Business Profile.
4. Verification of authorization
To verify your authority, a verification code is sent on one of the following
- Phone number
- E-mail address
- Via a postcard on the business address
Insert the code in the ‘verify my business’ option. Once the verification process is completed, now your business has a business page. But before you can start using it for your business, you have to set-up a few things and provide information about your business.
You can skip some of these questions, but the more information you can provide, the more effective it is for your business presence on Google.
5. Select the address of the business
Add the address of the business. This address will appear exactly to the people who search about the business, so be very precise about it. Google My Business will also ask you to position a marker on the location of your business. If your business doesn’t have a specific location, i.e., store, you can also select the area from the map on which the business operates.
6. Chose how your business serves the customers
There are two categories of your business operation. Either you serve customers at their business location or serve them on their doorstep or something similar.
- Serving customer on the physical location
If your services are available in your stores or a single location only, choose this category. If you also serve customers on their doorsteps, such as home delivery, you can also list your service area beside the service’s location.
- Providing delivery services
If your business doesn’t serve the customers on the business address, then choose the second option. Then enter the business address, click I deliver goods and services to my customers at the bottom, click next, and list your service areas.
Click “Next” after providing information in any of this option.
7. Select the category of your business
You can skip this step, but it is recommended not to do so. Adding the business category on your business page positively affects your Google ranking and online business appearance. This step is straightforward. Just type the potential categories of your business, and all related categories will appear on the screen.
Whenever you type any category, a tracking parameter Google Click Identifier (GCLID), helps to select the most relevant category.
8. Add contact information of your business
Add your website and contact number where customers can reach your business. In case you don’t have a business website, two options will appear on your screen:
- I do not need a business website.
- Get a free website based on your info. Clicking on this google will offer a free website for your business.
9. Add additional information
The more information you add, the more it’ll help your business to grow. You can add opening and closing timings, appointment URLs, pictures of the store/products, reviews from your customers, and share your events/blog posts, which last up to one week. These details are optional, and the page will still be running even if you do not provide these.
10. Verification of business
Lastly, please review all the information and verify it to list your business page successfully. At the top of the page, find the red banner and click verify now. Once verified, it will take you to your Google My Business page Dashboard.
Once all these steps are completed, your business will be displayed all across Google and its sub-platforms. Add your products and services on your page. Interact with potential customers through listing’s Q & A. write down your own FAQ’s. Collect reviews. Respond to reviews. These are only a few features. Much more is waiting for you on the GMB.
Do you need a Google My Business Page?
The answer is YES! Once you are listed on Google My Business, it legitimizes the business and helps you increase the google ranking and potential customers. Upon search, the pages which appear to the consumers are the one listed on Google. Data shows that most customers go for the products and services that appear in the “Near Me” category.
Besides all this, Google My Business is a very effective way to directly get reviews and responses from your consumers, interact with them, and answer their queries. Reviews from customers are the best tool to identify what your business needs to do to fulfill the demand of customers.
You can also post images of business, events, and other data about your business to interact and engage the customers that too for free. It is the best way to appear in Google search results and to optimize your online presence. Do not miss out on this opportunity if you aren’t already using Google My Business.