In today’s digital age, no matter how small or big your business is, having an online presence is undeniable. You can start with developing a website, interact on social media networks, embrace SEO strategies and create awareness using digital marketing techniques for your business. But that’s not sufficient, as for any business to survive and do well in the digital world requires “visibility and accessibility” that helps target visitors to your site.
Making your business accessible and visible can increase the customer base. Aspects such as dynamic search algorithms help customers locate different businesses, places, shops, etc., online. A business with an online presence yet not accessible to users is understood as non-existent in today’s contemporary and competitive business environment. Thanks to the “Google My Business” (GMB) account that’s allowing small and local business owners to promote their product and service in the fastest and most effective way!
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What is Google Business Account?
Google My Business is the top local business listing platform for owners and potential customers. It’s an online directory that helps business owners to streamline the basic yet essential information such as phone number, open hours, and address across Google Search, Google+, and Google Maps. If you have a physical office, opening a Google My Business account is a must, especially when there are multiple centres and the customer wants to locate the nearest. Google Business Account is a new interactive communication channel with your target customer, audience, and existing clients.
Formerly known as Google Places, the Google My Business account is free to create and easy to update. The account also allows adding images, reviews, virtual tours, and videos of past customers to make that first quality impression. Further, Google My Business Account incorporates useful analytics on how a customer searched for your place, where they come from, and then track the performance of your work. To make the most out of your business, creating a Google Business Account is highly recommended.
How to Create a Google My Business Account?
You can create a Google My Business Account in 5 simple steps:
Step 1 – Select a Gmail Account – To get started, you first need to select a Gmail Account. It is better to choose a Gmail account for marketing instead of any personal Gmail account. It will allow multiple contributors to have access to the hosting account. However, if you don’t have one, it’s okay to create a new Gmail just for marketing/business purposes.
Step 2 – Sign up with Google My Business – Go to https://www.google.com/business/ and sign in with your Gmail Account. Now click on the main menu of “Google My Business” on the top left of the page.
Step 3 – Add Business Name – Select the second option, “Create business account”. It will prompt you to choose a short account name that identifies your business.
Step 4 – Add Your Business Information – You need to go back to the main menu to select “Add Your Business” and create a Google Business account profile. You need to fill in your basic company name, address, website URL, business category, phone number, etc. Make sure you fill as relevant information as possible and click continue.
Step 5 – Verify – You need to verify your business and go through the verification process that Google asks for; you need to agree to the terms and conditions. Make sure you follow the verification process as your Google My Business account won’t go live until Google verifies your business.
You get three options to verify your business –
- Postcard verification – Is one of the most used methods to verify business and is available to all businesses. A verification postcard is sent to the address you register in this process. On receiving the code, enter it into your GMB account to verify your business.
- Phone verification – This option is limited to a few businesses only. You get to know if you get the option of ‘verify by phone. In this, you get an automated message to verify, and you can enter the code in your GMB account Setup.
- Email verification – In this, you receive a code in your mail account, which is linked to your GMB account, and you enter the verification stage.
The other options include instant verification, which is available if your business’s website is verified with Google Search Console. Bulk verification is for managing the business from more than one location.
How to make the most out of Google Business Account?
Google My Business account can benefit any company/firm/shop regardless of its size and location. Once you have a verified Google business account, your customer can directly connect with you. While you are free to add or delete your product and services, the key is to include more persistent information. More relevant information will lead to higher ranking and convenience for a potential customer to reach you. Here are a few things you can do to make the most out of a Google Business Account:
- Apart from basic information make sure you have an introduction about your business, driving and parking directions, landmark, promotional offers, clear photos (nothing less than 1080×608 pixels), engaging videos and your location on Google Map updated to attract more audience.
- Never miss out on reading and responding to customers’ reviews. Nearly, 70% of customers rely on online review as much as a personal recommendation.
- Review insights and analyze analytics about your business performance and learn how to improve.
- Encourage your customers to show their appreciation with ratings, and ask them to click on the Plus One button that can endorse your product/service.
- Always keep Google happy by adhering its quality guidelines – https://support.google.com/business/answer/3038177?visit_id=1-636260687911278346-718463157&rd=1
As a business owner you are bound to get many benefits by using Google My Business. So try out this fun and easy way to build engagement today!