Although it is not new, many businesses still don’t understand what a Google My Business (GMB) listing is and why it so important to your company. Simply put, if you want your business website to be found in online searches, you need Google My Business.
What is Google My Business?
Think of your Google My Business listing as your company’s home on the Google platform. This product replaced the former Google Places.
With a GMB listing your organization will appear on Google Maps and users will be able to see important information about your business when it is searched. This includes your hours, phone number, website and articles or other information you want to share.
Local Search Visibility
If being found in local search is important to your business, then having a GMB listing is a must. Search queries are becoming more geographically oriented. A GMB listing ensures that your business will show up when a geographic query is made.
For example, if you sell lawn mowers and someone searches, “lawn mower sales near me,” your business will be one of three displayed to the searcher. This is highly beneficial for companies: You have just been separated from the pack.
The Knowledge Panel
After your Google My Business listing is verified, additional information will appear when someone searches for your company. A box will be displayed to the right of the search results. This called the Knowledge Panel.
This area contains detailed information about your company. Here searchers can see your contact information, website, hours, business description, location on a map, photos and reviews.
The Knowledge Panel makes it easier for your potential customers to understand what you do and to see what others think of you. This box takes up a large amount of space on the search results page. So it can be a valuable asset to your company.
If you are not familiar with the Knowledge Panel but want to see an example, type in “Social Flair Marketing” and in the Google Search window. You’ll see how it appears to the right of the search results.
Setting Up GMB
Signing up for a Google My Business listing is free and not too complicated to do. Just follow these steps:
- Start by signing in to your Google account
- Go to Business.Google.com
- Click Add Location
- Enter the name of your business. Make sure you type it as you want it to appear on Google
- Add the business address
- Specify how you deliver your goods or services. Is it in person within a region, or do you do it based on geography around your business?
- State your business category
- Fill in your phone number and website address
- Choose how you want to verify the listing.
- If you choose text, a code will be sent to your phone.
- If you choose by mail, the code will be sent on a postcard.
- Once you receive your code, enter it at your GMB listing.
Even if you don’t have a brick and mortar location, having a Google My Business listing is an important online asset for your company. It gives your organization the edge when it comes to local search. It also provides enhanced visibility for your organization.
Bob Turner is a Digital Marketing Consultant in Cincinnati, Ohio.