What is Google My Business?
Surely, at some point, we have all googled something like "restaurants in Paris", "hotels in Miami","massage therapist nearby", "electrical technician near me", etc.
A result that stands out will appear among the search results, consisting of a list of the businesses that you are interested in located on Google Maps, followed by a short description of them.
On some occasions, this will show at the top of the results, and other times in between others. This will be the result that stands out the most on the page.
If you searched "Designers in Vermont",each one of the results inside this section will be different designer businesses, detailing its name, address, phone number, web page, and other information. And also, their exact location will appear marked on Google Maps.
On the other hand, you can also do the same search directly on Google Maps and you'll get the same results. Every one of the businesses will appear marked on the map. (Unless the business didn't specify its address)
This is what Google My Business consists of: your business appearing among the first search results when someone searches for your specific type of business.
What are Google My Business's advantages?
If your business shows up on Google Maps, it will bring you the following advantages:
1. Your business will increase its visibility on the internet
A lot of people search for keywords that relate to your business, both on google and on the map.
And as you know, a list of companies that can meet those particular needs will appear at the top of the page.
What does this mean? Well, your business could appear on the first page of Google, without the need for working on your web's positioning!
It also depends on your competition, among other things, but the possibility is real.
It's much easier that your Google MyBusiness appears on the first page of a google search. Having your web page on the first page is more complicated, you have to do SEO work for long periods of time.
But imagine, it could be even better...both of them could be on the first page! You would have two first page results and two different possibilities in which a client will end up getting in touch with you, instead of your competition.
The possibility of getting "double visibility" increases if your business is local and has less competition.
For example, if a Restaurant from Texas is registered as a Google My Business. When people from Texas search for a restaurant in the area, it's very likely that this restaurant will pop up not once... but twice among the first options, their web page and on Google Maps.
But if someone from another city does the same search, then this restaurant will not appear among the first options. But other local restaurants will.
2. Google My Business is free
Yes, you are reading just fine...: Creating and verifying your Google My Business listing is completely free! You won't have to pay for anything.
The only thing that you have to do is to register and verify your business (You will get more information about how to register later in the article.)
You will never have to pay any money, not for registering, not for your account's maintenance, nor to be found by clients. Free means free!
3. Your costumers will be able to value and give a score to your business.
When a client has purchased or hired a service from you, he will be able to leave a review commenting on his experience with your business and scoring it from 1 to 5 stars, depending on if he is happy with the service or if it was an unsatisfactory experience.
What happens with these reviews and scores?
Well, these will be in sight for every potential customer trying to decide which business or freelance is the best, for what he wants. And you should know that, nowadays, good reviews on the internet are like gold, if you want to attract new clients.
If you have a lot of good reviews and your competition doesn't, you will have better chances of getting clients. Not only that, but you will also appear before them on the search.
So, make a good impression and ask your costumers to leave a good review on your Google My Business so you can get to more people.
Who can add a business to GoogleMaps?
Well, as its name indicates, any person that has a business can be verified on Google My Business.
It doesn't matter if it is a big company ora small one, an online store, or even a one-person business. It doesn't matter if you don't have an office, either if you offer a service or sell products.
No matter your situation, you will be able to put your business on Google Maps.
Even if you work from home, you may not show your location... if you don't want people to know where you live. And the same happens if your job requires you to go to your customer's location and you don't have an office.
Creating your Google My Business
Well, it is time to put into practice all the explanation that we did. This is a step by step of how to create your business's profile and appear on Google Maps.
It won't take longer than 10 minutes for you to create it, but you will have to wait for a while until is verified. The first steps are very fast and simple.
First step: Access Google My Business official web
The first step you have to take is to access Google My Business with your g-mail account. If you don't have one yet, you must create one. The email that you choose should be related to your business, so it looks more professional for your costumers.
Second step: Create your profile
This step couldn't be more simple. You only have to click "Manage Now", and then follow and add all the information on the different screens that pop up:
-Register your business's name.
-Add a location. If you have a shop, an office, a supermarket, etc... you have to click "Yes". If you work from home or you have to move to different locations on your line of work, simply click "No" on this screen. (Don't worry, your business will appear on Google's search results, but Google maps won't show your address).
-Type of Business.
Step Three: Verify your Google MyBusiness Account
Depending on the type of business you have, you will have different options to confirm the verification.
-By mail: This is the most common option. You will receive a letter with the verification code to the address you chose.
-Phone: This option is only available for certain businesses.
-E-mail: Also, only available for certain businesses.
-Bulk verification: If your business has more than 10 locations.
-Instantly: You have this option available only if you already verified your business's website with GoogleSearch Console.
How to increase your GMB's account visibility
After you have already created your account, there are many things you can do to increase your GMB's visibility and have an advantage over your competition. Google only shows the first three businesses to the user, it considers them the most relevant.
Although the user has the option to see the rest of the businesses, it is important to appear in one of those first results to obtain better initial visibility.
These are the main things that are going to make your business climb to the top of the search results:
1- Uploading pictures
If you upload your business's pictures and images regularly, Google is going to interpret it as a good sign, as you would be updating your brand and showing new information to the public.
2- Write publications
On Google My Business platform you can write publications that contain specific information about your business:deals, limited promotions, events, etc. Google will also take this as a good sign.
Besides, the users will see these publications along with the rest of your information, so if you attract some attention with these, then people will be more interested in your profile.These posts last 7 days.
3- Get good reviews!
Positive reviews are the single most important factor when it comes to increasing your business's visibility. You can't do this yourself... but focus on giving the best service possible, and then ask the clients to give your business a good score.
Even better if they can write some lines detailing how good was their experience. Many people will be more than willing to do that for you.
As always, your success will also depend on the strength of your competition. If you follow these recommendations and they don't, then you will have a clear advantage over them.