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Why and How to Set Up Your Google My Business Listing

Guy Sheetrit August 8, 2016

 

Setting Up Your Google My Business Listing

It’s always the canny marketer who is looking to add to their hectic workload by expanding their channels!

WordPress has been a mainstay of promoting businesses and different services for some time now. It’s always a good idea to have an eye on expanding your ways to get targeted visitors to come to your website though.

Thankfully, Google has a great option to move into or add to your arsenal: Google My Business.

Great for individuals and companies looking to increase their methods of self-promotion.

After you’ve done all your work ensuring your general SEO strategy is on point you might find there’s little more that can be done to increase your visitors and conversion. There’s nothing worse than the feeling that you’re missing something when it comes do digital marketing and if you haven’t got a My Business page properly set up, your intuition would be right!

Today we’ll be taking a look at how Google My Business can aid in your promotion through some interesting techniques that work side-by-side with general SEM and SEO work.

So what is it?

As Google describes it themselves, the point of My Business is that it lets you get directly in touch with customers.

It’s without argument that Google has the best reach and breadth of users in the world and this tool is purported to give a way to reach them on a personal level.

There’s a few different things to My Business that make it more than a storefront. You have different ways to set up personalised listings within a user defined area, for one.

What can it do for me? Why bother?

Fair questions that need answers. Let’s summarise some key benefits.

  • Benefit your SERPs

You might think that those businesses that show details of their opening hours, location and contact details might be paying through the nose for PPC advertising. The fact is that it’s a simple result of registering and setting up their My Business page. Neat, right?

  • Mobile friendly

It’s great that My Business is fully mobile friendly. It well should be as it’s designed to work with users on the move who want a list of businesses in close proximity. We’ve tested it out and it works well.

  • Update your page and listing easily from any location

It’s not a pain to make changes to your listing wherever you are. As it’s integrated within Google’s easy-to-use system, you can do what you need from any location and through any device.

  • Powerful advertising without PPC payments

We touched on how prominent listings for businesses set up on My Business are. It’s a huge chunk of the Google SERP and you don’t pay a single penny for it. You can’t really argue with that. You can also get inventive with locations and your keyword campaigns.

So how do I set it up?

You know the benefits and you want to get started – great!

Let’s go over the steps.

If you somehow don’t have a Google account already you’ll need to get one set up. This can be used by your Gmail account if you have a suitable one setup already (don’t be lazy and use a personal one, you’ll get spammed!)

First we need to choose the listing type.

This varies depending on if you are for instance an online shop versus having a physical location. Some stores alternatively only operate from home addresses or have no physical premise.

Businesses such as these will want to make use of the service area and brand options instead of inputting a specific address.

You’ll then want to add in details of the business.

Fields to enter here cover details like the service area and storefront. If you do have a physical address but you’d prefer not to have this how up on the SERP together with the rest of your information you can also choose to restrict that information.

The service area section is great for companies that operate remotely. You can check a box that will confirm that goods and products are delivered to customers instead of them visiting a store or warehouse.

Regarding the service area function, this is a very useful and flexible part of the My Business setup that lets you determine the area of your coverage to a very granular degree. You can add in details of entire cities or just single zip codes or create an entirely custom area of coverage using the business location as the center.

You can begin promoting your setup with AdWords right away, making use of the PPC service to make sure that you’ll appear on any SERPs that wouldn’t naturally display your details.

It’s worth noting that this isn’t really essential. We’ve already mentioned that this is technically a zero cost function – you’ll be showing up on any relevant SERPs by default. You just have the option to extend this reach through payments should you identify the need.

Once the above is done you’re free to set up your brand page. You can customise all details to a greater degree through the online dashboard that is accessible via mobile or desktop. Apps are also available for Android phones as well as Apple.

Let’s talk extras

Sounds good so far!

Let’s go over the apps and plugins a little further.

We mentioned mobile apps. These are well put together when it comes to the My Business service.

We like making use of this for direct customer contact and reviews. It makes it very easy to update your own details of the business as already established as well as take a look at any inputted customer reviews.

You can also easily edit details such as opening hours while on the go, a very useful feature if you are a small business whose core business hours often fluctuate.

A handy point to note here is that there is also integration with WordPress available through third party plugins if of interest.

You can also get the Google Places Review plugin that gives you a simple and easy to digest display of any ratings left on your My Business page.

For a side point that works along with your existing SEM and SEO practices it’s great to see how Google worked hard on making the UI and display easy to read with minimal fuss.

If you want the capability to actually filter through all reviews on your site a premium version is available.

It comes down to your budget and focus. The UI is quite agreeable by default and as such if you’re tight on what you can put money into we are happy to advise that the free version is perfectly serviceable and can suit basic needs.

At the end of the day

We’re very pleased to see this offering from Google get the support and clean presentation it needs to be viable.

With Google My Business you’re looking at more chances to be seen and connection with customers. It’s an extra tool in the ever expanding kit of a digital marketer and is well received. Good job Google!