How to Claim your Google Business Listing

blog_google_places_revisedIf you own a business, whether it be a small home-based operation or a large corporation, you should make sure that your business is not just listed in Google, but also properly claimed and with the most up-to-date information possible. But before we discuss how to claim your business with Google, we should first discuss why you should claim your Google business listing.

It’s no secret that Google is the largest and arguably most important search engine in the world. As a business owner, your goal is to get all your ducks in a row with Google, before you ever enter the world of SEO or Internet Marketing on a professional level.

 

If Google doesn’t know you exist, you might as well not…

 

Today an overwhelming number of consumer buying decisions

start with an online search. And whether you own a small shoe store or an entire shopping mall, you want your business to appear when someone nearby searches for shoes. Whats the cheapest, easiest, and fastest way to make that happen? Claim your local listing in Google Places.

 

Claiming your listing

 

The process is much simpler than it sounds. If you’re pretty tech-savy and can follow step-by-step instructions online, go to Google for Business and follow the on-screen instructions. You’ll need to verify that you are in fact the owner of the business. You’ll also have to enter your physical business address. Google will verify that the address is correct by sending  a postcard through snail mail with a pin number on it. Once you receive the postcard, you can go online and enter the pin to verify that you received the postcard at the correct address. Be careful when entering your business information as it can be difficult to change later. The most important thing to pay attention to when setting up your Google Places account  is choosing the type of business. Do not say that you are a storefront if you do not own a physical retail location and do not say that you are a corporation if you are a small local business. This can result in your listing being removed and can be very difficult to change later.

 

What’s so great about a Google Places listing

 

As you may know, many businesses spend large amounts of money on Search Engine Optimization and Pay Per Click campaigns. The goal of both of these marketing strategies is simply to get your website to the top of Google Searches. If your business is verified with Google Places, your business listing should appear at the very top of google the same way that an expensive ad would appear. You can customize your logo, add photos, ask customers to write reviews, and all of this is absolutely free.

 

Do I still need an SEO strategy

 

While verifying your listing with Google Places is a great first step, it most certainly isn’t the last step you should take in promoting your business online. Your SEO strategy should include not just a few steps, but an entire team of people working on your website to make sure that you show up in various searches for relevant keywords to get not just a lot of traffic, but traffic that can easily convert into leads or customers. The best way to beat your competitors online and appear above them in online searches is to speak with a professional SEO specialist to determine your individual needs as a business, who you’re trying to attract to your website, and let the professionals handle the rest.

We would love to speak with you directly about your local SEO strategy or your overall internet marketing strategy. Whether you want to start small or hit the ground running and beat your competitors, we can help you find an SEO strategy that’s right for your business. Give BMGcreative a call today or fill out our online form and we’ll be happy to discuss your complete online marketing strategy.