Google My Business is a platform for business owners to control their information across key data points within the Google infrastructure (which is huge!). It's an incentive for Google in that giving complete control of how your business is presented online versus an automated system creates a thriving, human-edited database. Of course, if you break outside the guidelines you will be removed or suspended. That's no worry though when you do it right & plan ahead! So what is it that Google My Business will do? You can sign up & create a profile for your business. This profile is very powerful as it represents digital real-estate & will rank in search engines if it is done right. This gives you as a local business owner leverage to be found. What about if you don't have an office but you service an area or region? You can hide your address & set that service area.
NAP (Name, Address, Phone Number)
So we've got the most basic information down. What next? Get your email & social profile accounts ready. I use OneNote, Word, & Notepad in Windows to keep all my business records straight & at the ready. You're going to use them a lot filling out index submissions.
Bing Places For Business is very similar & will use the same information. On each of these listings you can post things like offers, coupons, pictures, & hours. GMB goes a little further with a more robust post/review system. Check out the links below to get started with your online listing. If you need help creating the listing consult with a professional & have them guide you through the process & monitor the listing for you.
Let's look at directory submission sites next week & the other freemium listing sites.
I recently submitted my company & website to iBegin. They have an online index of companies, businesses, & organizations. There are many thousand indexes online. They offer free & paid services. The key to Search Engine Optimization is getting quality links to your website & also relevant listings for your clients or users. I use iBegin as an example & there are more than we could ever go over. The point is do a little digging around for site & business submission indexes & you may be surprised how many free listings you can scoop up. Consistency is key for developing your digital presence since you're depending on search engines to deliver your site or business in front of people who search for what it is you do or sell.