Google My Business (a.k.a GMB) is a free Google tool that gives you the opportunity to create a listing for your business that will appear on Google Search and Google Maps.
If you have a new business, it may appear under another name on GMB e.g. if the previous business owner created a GMB listing, that business will appear in Google search engine and maps results.
If this is the case, you will need to find your business, as it appears in GMB and claim the business as yours, so that you can update the details with your new business information.
If you don’t have a GMB account you can create one when claiming a business on Google. If there is no previous listing to claim, you can create a GMB account and create a completely new listing for your business.
Once you’ve created an account, Google reads the information you have added and adds your listing to search engine results. Your listing will then appear on results when users are searching for businesses in the area your business is situated.
GMB businesses listings get 5 times more views than an unclaimed listing, so you can understand why it’s worth an important tool to use. But that’s not the only reason for having a GMB listing.
Below is an overview of the number of reasons GMB can work for your business.
With GMB you:
- Get a free business listing that appears on Google search engine results and Google Maps
- Post updates, photos and promotions to engage customers
- Drive traffic to your website or increase sales with call to action buttons
- Link to Adwords express to promote your business and special offers
- Access insights to see how many people are visiting and viewing your GMB page
- Add, manage and verify bulk business locations if you have businesses at multiple addresses
With GMB, potential customers can:
- Find your business (via Google maps) and get directions
- Call your business via your listing
- Find your website via your listing
- Review your business and provide 1 to 5 star ratings
- Read your business reviews
- Send you messages
- View all your updates, photos and promotions
GMB – additional features:
Google My Business has a verification tool that allows you to verify your page so that customers can trust that you are who you say you are (verification includes receiving a postcard or call from Google to verify your listing using a code.) Verification can also be done via Google search console.
For bulk verification, you will need to complete a verification request form detailing all your business locations when you set up your account.
Optimise your listing
To optimize your GMB listing you will need to:
- Keep your business listing up to date
- Update regularly with posts, photos, reviews and by responding to messages
- Use insights to spot trends and engage your customers
- Respond to positive and negative views
- Encourage customers to leave reviews
Google Maps also provides a code that allows you to embed a map of your business location into your contact us page on your website to increase your ranking in search engine
With Google my Business, you get access to your listings insights so you can review, learn and update your listing to maximise engagement. These include:
- How customers searched for your business
- How many calls your business received via search and map results
- The number of requests for directions to your business
- How many customers visited your website
- How many people clicked on your photos
- How and when individuals interacted with your listing
- Which days photos were viewed the most
- Option to bulk export location insights for your business locations
Now I know this is a lot to take in but there’s more…
Along with all this, GMB also links with Google Adwords Express; a paid for search engine marketing and advertising tool that helps you advertise your business in Google’s search engine and map results.
Adwords Express works by displaying adverts that show your business locations, a map to your location, or the distance to your business to customers looking for businesses in your area.
So there you have it, a complete overview of how Google My Business can help you get your business found online, in addition to the number of free tools available via GMB that can help increase exposure of your products and services.