As a small business owner, it’s tough to be a master of all trades. You tend to be the head chef and chief bottle washer at your business and unless you’ve figured out a way to clone yourself, you know you simple can’t do it all.
You have two options:
- Add getting found online to your to-do list and hope you can find the time to get around to it.
- Hire a professional who has already spent thousands of hours studying, learning, and perfecting their craft to do it for you. (May we be as so bold to suggest we might be that solution?)
Regardless of which option you choose, it’s good to know some of the basics.
Getting a Google listing is free, but it takes time to make sure your information is correct and Google requires verification.
Once you’ve verified your listing, you can enhance your Place Page for your business by adding photos, videos, coupons, and even real-time updates like weekly specials all on your Place Page. Verifying your listing gives you the opportunity to share even more information about your business with Google.
Google has “best practices” for each of these categories. For example, the way you name your images can have a big impact on the results you get in the search engines.
Google will verify your listing by either sending you a postcard or requiring you to verify via a pin number given to you over the phone. There are times when they won’t give you a choice, such as when a location has already been claimed by someone else or if Google doesn’t show records of the business at that location elsewhere on the web. The postcard option takes longer and that’s why most businesses opt for the phone verification.
You can add other information to your listing too—such as a description of your business, photos, reviews, or information about hours. Some of this data is pulled from third party websites such as yellowpages and yelp. This is why it’s critical to get business citations in other directories online. Our team typically lists our clients on over 400 different directories to ensure a high authority ranking.
Here is an example of a #1 possitioned Google Places business listing in Santa Barbara, CA: