It’s funny how we humans tend to miss the obvious. After spending several hours in discussion about a digital marketing strategy with a new client, I sometimes find that they have not even set up “Google My Business”. This is a free and powerful service which Google offers. It is the box or inset which appears on the right of your screen when you Google a business. Try it now! Google your business name and see if the box appears. It shows a picture of your business premises with a map alongside it as well as a list of your basic business details. How many of the details have you completed? The more information you give Google then the more highly ranked you become. The most powerful part of this service is the “Reviews” section. The more reviews you have, the higher you rate in Google. Ask some of your best customers to write a review for you.
For more action, continue to add posts. There is a box where you can write a post of up to 300 words, you can even add a photo or video there. This is a great place to advertise special deals or events your business is promoting. Google loves activity therefore the more content you are adding and the more frequently you are doing this shows Google that you are a dynamic business. Google rewards dynamic businesses that are consistently using their services.
You must have a Gmail account to set this up therefore, if you don’t have one, create a new one e.g. firstname.lastname@example.org. Once you have a Gmail address, Google “Google My Business” and follow the easy instructions for set-up. It is best to give a physical address for your business to which Google will mail a password. This can take two to three weeks to arrive. Once you enter this verification password, you can complete the details for your listing and it goes live. The Google My Business website will give you all the information you need to get the most out of it. As a result of this listing, Google will email you stats of how many people searched for your business and viewed this listing. You can see these stats on their website.
The great thing about this is that it’s FREE. This is the most valuable piece of real estate on the Internet and Google provides the opportunity for free therefore it is well worth spending the time to learn the process. All you need to get it started is a Gmail address.
Your Gmail account gives you access to all the Google products of which there are over twenty. Many of these will be useful in your business e.g. Google Drive for saving and/or sharing documents, Google Maps, Google Calendar, Google Keep for saving notes, Google Hangouts for a chatroom. One of Google’s services that you should be using is Google Analytics. This service gives all the statistics you need about the visitors to your website. While logged in to your Gmail account, search for it to find the setup instructions. During set-up you will be given a piece of programme code to insert into the back end of your website. Just copy and paste this into an email to your web developer who will insert it for you. If you struggle with the initial set-up then ask your developer to do it for you.
It could be said that Google controls all the searches on the internet and for this reason, it is important for your business to be well recognised by Google. At the same time, it is useful to be aware of all the tools that Google makes available and use them to run your business more efficiently.