Learn the steps it takes to have a Google My Business profile for growing your business on the web.
Is your business verified on Google? If you are not sure, then the answer is most likely “no”. For your business to be verified on Google, someone from your business would have requested a verification postcard and then followed the steps to begin setting up and verifying your business with Google. This postcard confirmation is just one of the many steps in getting your business verified. Continue reading to learn the rest of the steps to get a Google My Business (GMB) profile.
Before we begin with the GMB steps, let’s discuss GMB and why it’s important to have a profile for your business. GMB is a free, relatively easy-to-set-up avenue that allows you or your agency to manage how you want your business to appear on Google’s Search, Maps, Local Finder, and Pack. It’s important because it is a crucial aspect of your local SEO strategy.
Google My Business (GMB):
Within the GMB profile, you can add your business address, contact information, posts, offers, deals, promotions, hours of operation, and more important items about your business. GMB increases business discovery and helps your local audience find your products and services quickly. In fact, 76% of mobile “near me” searches visit a related store within a day.
Other benefits include SEO improvements in rankings and more website traffic. After a searcher views your GMB profile, 56% of them will check out your website, 24% will give your business a call and 20% will ask for directions. Not only are your getting consumers to convert from simply having a GMB presence, but you can contribute to the website traffic even more.
Pictures and media files are another big aspect of GMB. According to Google, businesses that have photos on their GMB profile receive 42% more requests for directions and 35% more clicks to their websites. Quality and quantity are important here as you want the pictures you upload to GMB to be JPG or PNG and at least 720 pixels wide by 720 pixels tall.
Now that you know more about GMB and how it can bring business to your company, let’s talk about the steps to get verified.
9 Steps to a Verified GMB Profile:
Step 1) Log in to the Google Account (Gmail) you want to be associated with your business.
With every GMB profile, there is a Gmail behind it. If you don’t already have a Gmail, simply set one up. It is a free email platform run by Google.
Step 2) Type in google.com/business in your Internet search bar and select “Start Now” in the top right corner
You can also type in the name of your business in Google’s Search Bar and if it pulls up a GMB profile, shown at the right side of the SERP, click on “Own this business?”.
Step 3) Enter your business’s name
This is an easy step but a crucial one. Be sure the name of your business is correct and matches the rest of your profiles across all channels.
Step 4) Enter your business address
If you manage a regular brick and mortar store, this step is easy. However, Google gives you options if you don’t have a specific address you want to be shown.
With this step, you can either select delivery such as if your business is UberEATS or a Taxi Service or you can select to “Hide my Address” if you work from home.
If you are a delivery service, you can choose how many miles (or region) you can deliver your products and services to. Your options are to either “Deliver in person within the region, city or postcode” or “Deliver in person within __ (miles) distance from the business.”
Step 6) Choose your business category
Try to pick the most accurate and appropriate category for your business. Start typing and Google will auto-populate their category options.
Step 7) Finish setting up your basic information about your business such as the website, phone number, and the rest of the contact information.
If you do not have a website, Google can provide you with one. They also give you a way to claim a domain for a set dollar amount a year.
Step 8) Choose a verification option
You can choose whether to verify your business by postcard (most common), by phone, by email, instant verification, or bulk verification (if you have multiple locations). If you request by postcard, be sure to put your name and business address so the card delivers to you successfully. Google will then mail you a postcard and you will receive it in about five business days with a code.
Once requesting the verification, don’t make changes to the address, business name, or category or you will need to request another verification code. If you request more than one because you made changes, it might delay the process a bit.
After you receive the correct verification code, type it in where it says “Enter verification code” in blue writing in the upper right-hand corner of your business home dashboard of GMB.
Step 9) Update regularly
Now that you have a verified GMB profile, you need to continue to manage it. For example, many of my clients post weekly blog posts or run promotions directly through their GMB profiles. Be sure to add media files such as your logo, cover photo, any video files, and pictures frequently because it will help drive more traffic to your website.
Final thoughts on GMB:
GMB is an incredible way to utilize your local SEO efforts and is another channel for posting blog content, social media updates, changes to your business, update your business hours, and more. Recently, Google implemented a COVID-19 update category post which informs your consumers on how you are handling any COVID-19 precautions.
Not only is it extremely important to have an updated GMB profile for your SEO, but it is critical for your consumers as well. Do you have any questions about the steps to get your business verified on Google? Let us know by commenting below.
For more marketing tip articles, check out the following:
- 6 Reasons Why Your Website is The Center of Your Marketing Universe
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- Become a Social Media Guru and a “Thumbs Up” Connoisseur
- SEO and PPC Management: The Benefits of Both