Updated: Mar 2
Your business is brand new. You literally opened your doors and now you’re ready to take on the world. Now you’re ready to get the word out, but not sure where to begin.
While it does matter what kind of business you have, I’d recommend most businesses start with setting up their Google Business Profile.
For start-ups and small businesses, Google Business Profile is an excellent wait to be found by customers. If you’re unfamiliar with how to start a Google Business Profile, this short article will walk you step by step on how to get started.
Google Business Profile plays a huge part in a business’s success and is a powerful, free tool that businesses can use to market themselves.
In fact, 64% of customers say they found their ideal business by searching online via Google and using the rating system to determine if they’d want to move forward with it or not.
With Google Business Profile, you can promote yourself for free, customers will find your location on a map, and trust you!
Before you get started on setting up Google My Business profile, you must have a business. It needs to be claimed on Google. I’d recommend having a business email address that you can use to claim your business.
Google Business Profile Short Checklist Guide:
It’s simple to get started on Google Business Profile.
Check To See If Your Google Business Profile Exists
You might be wondering if you can find your business on Google. This is the first step. Do a simple search and see if you can find a listing. Even if you’ve never used Google before, chances are you’ll have a listing.
There may be website builders such as Wix that generate a Google Business Profile for you.
Google Business Profile may already exist. If this is the case, you’ll need to claim your business. A business icon should appear at the bottom right corner.
Here is an example of how you can claim your existing business.
If you click on the icon, another tab will open. to the Google Business Profile login screen. This screen will prompt you to find and manage your business. Follow the instructions on how to claim your business.
The screen should look something like this:
Depending on what you are using, you can claim your GMB profile by the following ways:
How to claim your GMB Profile on a computer:
Open Google Maps
Enter your business name in the search bar
Click on your business name and select the correct one
Click Claim This Business and then Manage Now
Select how you’d like to verify your profile
How to claim your profile on an Android device:
Open the Google Maps app
Search for your business
Select the correct one
Scroll down and tap Claim This Business
How to claim your Google My Business listing on an iPhone or iPad:
Open the Google Maps app on your Apple device
Search for your business
Select the correct one
Scroll down and tap on Claim This Business
Sign Into Google Business Profile
It’s simple to sign in to Google Business Profile. First, sign in to https://www.google.com/business/ with your business email address.
The reason you want to have a business email address is that with this email address, you’ll be able to manage other Google tools such as Analytics, Google Search Console, and Ads.
If you’re unsure how to create a business email address or why I’ll be creating an article soon to address this.
Examples of business emails may include:
Business emails should contain your business name as the domain. For instance, you don’t want companies or customers to know that you use gmail, outlook, or yahoo. Outlook and Gmail offer low-cost options for purchasing a domain name for your email.
This is an example of emails that are not business emails.
This small change will add a level of trust to your business.
Add Your Business to Google
Did you create a business email? Have you found your business? The next step depends on if your business is on Google or not. If your page already exists, you can type your business name in the search bar.
For legal and accuracy purposes, make sure to type in the business name that appears on the business license. Once you do this, you’ll then be asked to pick a business category.
You should be able to find the right category for your business. There are over 100 different categories to choose from.
Examples of categories:
Pick a category that is most relevant to your business. Don’t worry if you mess up on the category. You can add and change it later. If you have more than one category that fits your description, you can add these later too.
Enter Your Location and Contact Information
The next step is to enter your contact information.
Your contact information should include the following:
Business Phone Number
Upon entering this information, it’s important to ensure that your information is consistent across the internet. Do your best to keep your name, address, and phone number the same on all platforms. This includes social media and online directories.
Verify Your Address
Now that you’ve entered your information. You’ll have to verify your address. If your listing is already on Google, you can skip this step. Google may require you to verify by a code. This code will be mailed to your business address.
There are a few ways you can verify your address. These ways include the following:
What all these options have in common is a 5-digit verification code.
The most common and easiest way is by mail. Google sends a postcard to your business address with a verification code. However, it does take at least 3-weeks to receive a postcard.
After getting your postcard, these are the steps you should follow:
Go to your Google My Business dashboard
Select your business
Click “verify now” or “verify location”
Enter your verification code into the field
Phone call Verification:
If you have a Google Business Profile mobile app on your Apple or Android, you can verify your business using your phone number. The perk of this is that your verification is done instantly. This is not available to all businesses though.
Text Message Verification:
To use this step, you must have a business phone that receives text messages. Don’t use a landline phone option because you’ll never receive the text message code.
This is another option that may be available to your business. Text message verification is an option for some local businesses. A verification code will go to your business phone number through text message.
Video Chat Verification:
A Google Specialist may contact you through a video call at your workplace. This representative will reach out to you to ensure that your business is legitimate.
It’s uncommon, but a possibility. Similarly, to the other methods, a verification code will be sent to you by email.
I haven’t seen this option readily available for most businesses. If google decides that you have given enough information, it may enable an email verification as an option.
You will be able to choose to verify by email at the end of the setup process. Not seeing this option doesn’t mean you did anything wrong though. It really depends on your type of business and what information you’ve provided.
Final Thoughts and Summary
It can be a little scary with all the information out there readily available. I get it. Google Business Profile is a must though. The starting point for marketing begins with Google Business Profile.
You can achieve great success with it too. In time, more customers can find you especially if you manage it and maintain it well.
Setting it up is one important step to enable your business for long-term visibility and gain a great reputation online.
It’s simple to have your Google Business Profile listed.
Have Your Business License Ready
Create a Business Email
Search for Your Business on Google
Claim Your Business // Add Your Listing
Verify Your Business
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