Google, the world’s largest search engine, has been on a crusade to ensure that companies who use the internet for promotional purposes are legitimate ‘brick-and-mortar’ establishments that actually exist in real life. One of the ways they’re doing this is through their Google My Business service, which pops up to the right of your computer screen when searching for a business on Google. Let’s take a look at why a Google My Business listing makes sense, how to claim a Google My Business listing, and how to leverage this Google service for the benefit of your brand!
Why Google My Business?
As the title reveals, the Google My Business service is completely free. There are thought leaders in the digital marketing industry that go as far as to suggest that a My Business listing is becoming the new business website – and they wouldn’t be wrong! Ask yourself: what exactly is a business website?
It’s where a company displays information about its brands, products and contact information for potential customers to find online. So, when searching for company’s information, you’ll more than likely type your query into Google’s search bar. Chances are you’ll see the company website pop up, and you’ll more than likely click on the link – which will take you to the website’s home page.
At this point in time you’ll need to click on the ‘contact us’ menu icon, or scroll way down to the bottom of the website to see the contact details. So, wouldn’t it make sense if you could negate a bunch of the above steps – finding the information you’re looking for right there on Google directly after typing in your search query?
What’s more – with a GMB listing, your information will come up on Google Maps when people are searching for locations of service providers.
Claiming a Google My Business Listing
If you own a business in the UK, you’ll want to claim a Google My Business listing sooner rather than later. This is because anyone can claim a listing for your business – regardless of whether they own a business or not.
Start by navigating to business.google.com and follow the steps to setting up your listing. Google will ask you for information such as your landline telephone number (or cellular number) and physical address.
Once you’ve completed your listing in terms of business location, contact information, physical location, services offered and the like – Google will need to verify your business. They do this by either calling your landline phone or sending you a post card with a 5-digit code.
This code needs to be submitted to Google via your Google My Business admin panel before your business listing is made live. Remember that setting up your listing with the correct information is only one side of the coin. Let’s take a look at how you’re able to leverage your GMB listing for marketing purposes…
Using Google My Business for Marketing
Once you’ve set up your Google My Business listing, you’ll have access to a few amazing features that can be used to promote your company:
Much like a Facebook post, Google allows you to develop posts that can feature both text and imagery. These can be used to keep your potential and existing customers updated with what’s happening in your organisation. You can also add a button to each GMB post, prompting viewers to learn more, sign up, call now or book an appointment! These are the types of Google posts currently available for development:
- What’s New (updates regarding happenings in your business)
- Event Posts (set dates & times of events happening in or around your business)
- Offer Posts (let customers know that you’re running specials on products/services)
- Product Posts (introduce a product , setting a price and providing a description)
Give your potential customers a deep-dive into who you are and what you do best by optimising your Google My Business listing with regular updates. From your GMB dashboard you’re able to respond to Google reviews, add and remove applicable telephone numbers, and post multimedia content including:
- 360-degree photos
- Video content
- Interior photos (reception, workshop, etc.)
- Exterior photos (parking lot, entrance, etc.)
- Staff photos
Digital marketing often involves A-B testing of content to ascertain the types of posts that resonate best with your audience. By accessing the insights section of your Google My Business listing, you get to see, among other things:
- How customers find your business on Google
- Google search queries used to find your business online
- Where searchers see your GMB listing (search results or Google Maps)
- Actions viewers take on your Google My Business (call in, visit website, etc.)
- How many people have requested directions to your business premises
Need Assistance with Claiming Your Google My Business Listing?
At Waverley Digital, we understand Google like few others. We’ll assist you with claiming your Google My Business listing, optimising it for maximum exposure, and help out with leveraging it as a marketing tool for your organisation. Give us a ring soon and let’s get your business onto Google!