How to Set Up, Claim, and Manage Your Google Business Profile

Earning a top spot on Google’s rankings and enjoying all the new business that comes with it starts with making sure you’re showing up at all. Properly managing your Google Business Profile (f.k.a. Google My Business) makes sure prospective customers will see you online.

Not convinced that Google rankings matter? Here are 3 statistics to consider:

  1. Google hosts 92% of all search traffic (Hootsuite)
  2. Searches for local business comprise 46% of all search traffic (Social Media Today)
  3. Prospects are 2.7X more likely to consider you reputable and 70% more likely to visit your location if you have a completed Google Business Profile (Hootsuite)

Obviously optimizing your Business Profile is worth the effort! Here’s how to create and optimize your profile, plus a few common FAQs.

Create Your Profile

If you’re running a new business or just haven’t prioritized it in the past, you might not have a presence on Google yet. Setting it up is just a 2-step process.

  1. Sign in to Google Business Profile Manager at https://www.google.com/business/
  2. Search for your business in the search bar. If it exists already, just “claim” it. If it hasn’t been created, fill in all of the following fields:
  • Business name
  • Category of business
  • Location
  • Contact information
  • Your mailing address (this field will be kept confidential and will just be used to verify your location by mailing you a postcard)
  • Open hours
  • Business description
  • Photos of your business, products/services, customers, and staff

Optimize Your Profile

If your business is already represented on Google, you can probably make some adjustments to spiff up your listing. Even some well-established businesses are lacking crucial info on their profiles. The more details you provide, the more likely you are to get found by the right searcher and move towards the top spot.

Consider these tips:

  • Complete every field you can, including ones that may seem unnecessary like your business description
  • Complete the address verification process for your physical location
  • Focus on photos. These will show up alongside your listing and give searchers a chance to learn more about what you have to offer. Professional-quality photos are best – they should make you seem trustworthy. It’s worth taking some time to get these right or finding someone who can help.
  • Use keywords in your description. Think about what searchers might type to find your business and use those words to describe yourself.

Frequently Asked Questions About Google Business Profiles

Q: What if I don’t have a web presence?

A: You can set up a Google Business Profile even if you don’t have a website. However, if you have the resources we recommend at least setting up a simple site in order to make your business appear more professional, polished, and trustworthy.

Q: How do I manage multiple locations?

A: On your Google Business Dashboard, find the “Add Business” drop-down menu in the top right corner, click “Add Single Business,” and add information about your additional locations. They’ll each show up as their own listing for nearby searchers.

Q: What about other search engines?

A: Although Google isn’t the only place people look for local businesses, it is the most important by a mile. Like we said before, 92% of all search traffic comes through Google (Hootsuite). Before you focus on your Facebook, Yelp, Bing, or other listings, make sure you have a strong reputation on Google. However, do note that if your business is listed on other sites, it’s important to keep your information – like hours and contact information – up-to-date and consistent.

There’s more Google advice where this came from! Check out How to Check Your Google Ranking, The Local Business Guide to SEO and Google Rankings, and How to Respond to Google Reviews. You’re well on your way to claiming the top spot in your local rankings!

Want to see how Swell can automate your review generation and get your listing in front of more ready-to-buy prospects? Book a demo.

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