Google Business Management : What you need to Know
Google Business (GMB/GBP) is a tool that allows small business owners to manage their business listings on Google Search and Google Maps. Using this free tool, one can edit/update their business name, number, location, hours, reply to reviews, add pictures, and so on.
Basically, GMB/GBP can be thought of as a one-stop tool that allows one to manage and track Google rank online presence in local searches. In fact, many experts believe that one of the basic foundations of local SEO and ranking for local keywords on Google is proper management of Google Business.
Out of two people who search for a local query, one person ends up visiting a store on the same day. This tells us that the traffic from local search has a very high conversion rate which further highlights the importance of local SEO and GMB. So without wasting time, let's look at GMB management and what you need to know about it...
Google Business Management: What you need to Know
Google Business is completely free to use, and the only requirement is that you must have a physical location/office for your business. In short, the location of your business is required, and you can't operate totally online.
Now let's look at how you manage your GMB:
How to Create GMB Listing
Follow the steps mentioned below to create your Google My Business listing:
- Visit google.com/business and click on "manage now" to proceed. If you haven't signed in to your Google account, you will be asked to log in.
- Enter "Business Name" and click on next.
- Enter "Business Address" and click on next.
- Choose a business category (This is a very important step - That's why ensure that you select the correct category).
- Add website and business phone #.
- Choose a verification option to verify your ownership of the business (postcode, phone, or email).
How to Verify Google My Business Listing
Before you can continue to manage your listings on GMB or to make changes, you need to verify ownership of the business. Google offers the following methods to verify your GMB listing:
If you choose the postcard option, it will be sent to the business address you specified early. For some businesses, Google also offers the option to verify by phone or email. But if you do not see that option, it means that you need to select the postcard option.
Verifying your GMB/GBP listing or multiple my Business locations is an important step in Local SEO and should not be skipped.
How to Optimize Google My Business (GMB) Listings
One of the perks of verifying your GMB listings is that you get to update information and even optimize your listings to get more exposure and traffic!
Once you have verified your GMB listing, go to GMB Dashboard > Select the listing > Select Info.
Try to fill in all missing information or update outdated information. Having a fully updated GMB listing ensures that people find correct information about your business - In fact, fully updated GMB listings rank much better than incomplete listings.
Here are some of the things that should be present in your GMB listing:
- Photos - Business Listings with photos receive 35% more traffic to their websites and around 42% more driving direction requests in Google Maps.
- Videos - Add a short 30-second video to stand out from all other listings!
- Reviews - Reply to all reviews in a professional manner (both positive and negative). This will tell potential customers that you are active online and care about them!
Extra Tip: Ask for Reviews
A very important factor in ranking for local searches is "reviews." Businesses with a lot of positive reviews rank much better than those with negative or no reviews! So whenever you get a customer at your shop, politely ask them to leave an honest review on your Google listings!