Google My Business is a powerful digital marketing tool which can be used to optimise a business’s profile online. Using the platform, business owners are able to create a profile for their business, making it easier for users to find your business (and contact information) on Google Search or Maps.
Beyond increasing the visibility of a business in Google’s Search Results, Google My Business can form an effective part of a business’s digital marketing strategy.
Some of the ways Google My Business can help with a business’s digital marketing efforts include: improving your local SEO; helping to promote events, sales and specials; providing insight into how customers are finding you online and where they are coming from and providing an opportunity for your customers to leave online reviews.
SME South Africa answers all your frequently asked questions (FAQs) regarding this digital marketing solution.
How much does it cost to set up Google My Business?
It’s free of charge to anyone.
How to I sign up my business?
Business owners can sign up to Google My Business and create a profile. The next step is to get the business verified. Thereafter the business’s contact information like the address, website URL, business hours and images of the business will be displayed on Google Search results or Maps.
Why do you need Google My Business if you already have a website?
Google My Business complements your existing website by giving your business a public identity and presence with a Business Profile on Google. The information that you provide about your business can appear on Google Search, Maps and Google+.
Can you use Google My Business if you don’t have a physical address?
Yes. You can list your details to appear on Google with or without an address.
How does one verify your business?
For most businesses, verification means requesting, receiving and reading a verification postcard from Google. You might also have other verification options.
Can you fix incorrect information on your profile?
If your information on your Business Profile of Google My Business needs to be tweaked or you have to change the photos, you are allowed to edit it. Google may review your edits to check the quality.
Google might add a short description next to your website and it will only be removed it if the information is associated with the wrong business or it highlights products or services your business doesn’t offer.
Can you have multiple users for a business account?
Yes. Business accounts is now known as location groups. It provides a safe way to share management of your locations with multiple users. Location groups/business accounts are like a shared folder for your locations – a simple way to share access to a set of locations with coworkers.
If you are currently sharing your account username and password with other users, you should transition to using a location group/business account as a safer way to work together.
Can you transfer primary ownership of a listing?
In certain rare cases (for instance, if you are leaving the business), you may want to transfer primary ownership of your listing to one of the listing’s owners or managers. If you’re the only user associated with your listing, you can add additional owners and managers.
What happens if your business has closed or moved?
If any of your locations permanently closes, mark it as permanently closed on Google to keep your customers up to date.
Can you delete a business account?
You can delete a location group (previously known as a business account) if you no longer want to use it to manage locations. Deleting a location group/business account cannot be undone. If you’re no longer responsible for a set of locations in an account, transfer ownership of the account rather than delete it.
Want to stop managing a business listing, rather than delete a location group/business account? Remove it instead.
To delete a location group/business account, you must be an owner of the account and must first delete or transfer all locations within the account.
Are there any disadvantages to having a Google My Business page?
According to online news portal Search Engine Land, random people can make “suggested edits” to your profile, the changes can go live without you ever being notified. “Google is supposed to send emails to the owner and others managing your Google My Business listing when changes are made, but many times these change notifications are not received.”
Reviews (even bad ones) can be posted by customers to your profile and Google might not remove them. You can however engage with customers, so you can address a bad or good review. If you find that you received a fake review, you can log into your Google My Business account and flag the review and give Google as much detail about the situation as possible.
The above information was sourced from Google My Business Help.