How-To: Setting Up A Google Business Listing

Written by: Jason Bayless | December 24, 2014

Currently, Google business listings are handled through Google My Business. The program was formerly known as Google Places. It allows business owners to list their company through the search engine free of charge. If you haven’t taken advantage of this program, then you’ve made a tactical business error. By creating and managing a listing, your business can gain more website traffic and local buzz. Failure to list your business means giving away free advertising.

The following steps will get you started with a Google business listing today!

Step One: Navigate Over to Google My Business

Head over to Google’s hub for business listings and hit “Get on Google”. You’ll then be presented with a world map, centered on the United States. From there, the page will prompt you to search for your business. An appropriate listing should appear after entering this information. Otherwise, a missing business will need to be added in manually. Entering in the information requires two to three minutes or less. You should ensure that every tidbit is entered properly.

Step Two: Verify The Business By Mail

None of your information will appear until the business is verified. To do this, Google sends a verification postcard to your business address. This proves to the company that you’re authorized to control that business. A postcard usually arrives within five to seven business days. On the postcard, you’ll find further instructions to complete the verification process. Verification completes quickly once you have received the postcard, though.

Step Three: Fill Out Information For The Business Profile

Have you ever seen business listings on Google? They’re sometimes sparsely populated with information and tell searchers nothing. Without a doubt, nothing is worse than a boring or outdated listing page. You’ll need to populate that page with as much relevant information about your business as possible. Don’t cram every little detail into the listing because that lessens its effectiveness. Still, searchers need to know certain things about a given company.

Therefore, you should add the business hours and appropriate industry. You can list a website if one exists. Tell people about current offers and promotions. Also, it never hurts to add some photos of the business and its products. A description must be on point and describe the basics of your operations. Consumers don’t want to see boring information, so you’ll need to spruce things up wherever possible. These days, setting your business apart from competitors is the key to drawing in more customers.

Step Four: Take Care of The Little Things

Well, the following things might not be considered so little to most owners. You should make sure you’re on Google Plus, engaging your customers when possible. Customers like getting in touch with local businesses and voicing their concerns. Plus, sign up for AdWords Express with a decent budget and create a targeted ad for your local area. For the best results, your business listing should be updated regularly. Don’t let outdated information pervade the listing.

Step Five: Repeat (If You Own Multiple Businesses)

Perhaps you own a second business or another utilize multiple locations. In that case, you’ll want to create listings for those extra businesses. Multiple locations for one business should have their own personalized listings. They should stand out from each other and provide unique information. When every location features a similar listing, consumers will be unimpressed by the copy and paste job. Consumers like seeing a company that gives every listing its own personal touch.

Get Started With Google My Business Today!

Since Google My Business is free, nothing should stop you from adding your business. You can even jump on Google Plus and interact with current and potential customers. None of this costs money, unless you want to take advantage of AdWords Express, which is a smart use of money nonetheless. Sure, most businesses might use business listings from Google, but the best ones stand out above their competitors. A local company can’t afford to not list itself here.