When you are trying to get your social media plans set up everyone thinks of Google and they put SEO at the top of their lists. And yes you are right to keep the Big G in the front of your mind when you are trying to set your strategy up. Google has many different tools at your exposure. Most people know of Webmaster tools to make sure you are being indexed correctly. And then most people also like to know how many people are reaching their sites and need a way to track the progress of their efforts and in doing so they look to Google Analytics. There are tools for the merchant like Google Merchant Center so you are able to let google know what you are selling online. For the Brick and mortar stores and other venues, Google doesn’t have you left out either, Google has My Business
This is a tool that seems to get over looked often and that means you are throwing good, free advertising out of the window. Googles My Business allows for your business to show up on Google maps and display your brand predominantly in the space on the right hand side of Google’s search results. These items can give that as a small to medium sized business a nice little leg up on their competitors.
You need to be verified
The key too many of Google’s business oriented services is that your business needs to be verified. If you have a mailbox you can have your business verified. The process is easy though it is rarely instant. The key is to get a google Plus Business page.
Yes it appears that Google plus is slowly getting dismantled. You no longer have to have a G+ profile to comment on YouTube, And Google Plus Photo’s is now just Google photos but that doesn’t mean that The business side of Google Plus is soon to be punted to the curb. I see why google cuts services, even the ones that are popular. If they don’t make google money then that service needs to gather data. If it does neither one of these then it is normally sent to The Google Cemetery. Business pages may at first be the same as Facebook pages and it is, at first glance. Yet, Google business pages does collect a little bit more data with how people categories your business in the form of circles. If a person puts your gallery into the artsy fartsy circle or cultured circle then this gives Google a good idea of what people think of your business. Google Plus also allows for your business to be indexed in a special way so that your shops location can be properly displayed in search results. Yeah it is one more place to be but it is a place that if you so choose can be just a holding page. You don’t have to put any extra posts up unless you want to, and I feel it couldn’t hurt to share your information on your business page. The Google plus page can be just a location with all of your critical information. Like name address phone number hours of operation and the like.
Why is verifying a good thing
Have you ever looked at google maps and seen businesses dotted around and wondered how they did that? Google Local search and their business is verified. Now think of this little bit think of the block your business is located. How many businesses are there on that one block? Now go look at Google maps and look at the block on which your company is located. How many businesses are showing up? A couple, maybe even 4 or 5? Nowhere near as many as there actually are on that block. So in that instance, any argument against being verified should fly right out the window. That advantage alone is epic. Look for your competitors. Are they located? NO? Even more reason. People stumble upon businesses all the time, throw out some bait! See what you can catch. It will be more than your competitors who is not on Google maps just because they were just looking at SEO on Google.
There are times that unscrupulous people will set up fake profiles of your business just so they can create negative search results aimed at your company. Now this type of person is often very petty and they wonder why your business is beating them, when the result is often because of their lack of values. Yes sadly there are these people out there if for any reason just to try our patients. So again you want to be verified so your customers know that your business page is being ran by you or someone that represents your company.
Having a verified page also allows for you to read and RESPOND to customers reviews. So you can fix a problem a customer may have with a service. The reviews are just as important as they are on Amazon or Yelp. So to be able to respond to the review and to thank a high rating is just as important as responding to a negative review.
How to get verified
Getting verified is not hard at all.
- Go to Google Plus and create a Google plus page for your business
- Choose how you want to verify our business. You might get the option to verify by phone and if you do your great! Most people will have to use postcard. If you choose this method you have a bit of a waiting game for the post card to show up. When it does there will be a code that you will use on the My business website.
- Then you want to make sure your webpage is tied to your business profile you can do this in a couple of ways either by inserting code into the webpage
- After that you should get the verified symbol on your google page.
Google is more than just a search engine and thought that is their primary service they have other services that are designed to give you an advantage over others. This helps you to become even more successful in the ultimate form of social networking the hand shake. Is your site verified? What type of success have you had with it?
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