It’s a noisy world out there on the internet and your fledgeling business may be struggling to be heard. Whereas once upon a time all you needed was your website, and voilà, now you need to maximise your exposure in an increasingly overcrowded place. Google My Business (GMB) – or Google Business Profile as it has been renamed – makes your business visible and easier to find
Google My Business can often be overlooked but it could be a good option for your business. Whilst not everyone wants to publicise their company, for example when they work from home, for those who have an office or premises it is an excellent option.
How to set up Google Business Profile
Set up an account with Google and then head over to www.google.com/business to start filling out the information – what your company does, how to contact you, opening times and then add your logo and a few great photos. In order to finish your profile, Google will need to verify that your business is where you say it is. If you choose the postcard option, it will arrive in a couple of days and once verified you will go live. Your business won’t be top of the search list straight away but at least you are out there now!
Helping your customers find you online
GMB is also very helpful when people are searching for a service “… near me” – as you will come up in the results. If you’re not on GMB it will be your competitors that show up.
Keeping your business information up to date
GMB comes into its own on a mobile in the way it provides information to help your customers. It shows your location (and provides directions) on a map, your telephone number (call option), when your busy times are and it provides a link to your website. As well as providing normal opening and closing times you can also add holiday opening hours when necessary which will save someone a trip if you’re closed on a Bank Holiday.
Often people will view your business on GMB before your website so make sure you have some really good quality photos to showcase … and keep them updated.
Reviews - the Good, the Bad and the Ugly
One of the main features of GMB is that customers can leave reviews for you. For Good Reviews, engage with your customers and thank them for taking the time to leave a review.
Then there are the Bad Reviews and you really need to think about how you are going to deal with these before they come in. If it is a genuine complaint, acknowledge it, be polite and then try and take it offline to sort out any issues. Don’t let it become heated or angry.
However, the other bad reviews occasionally come from trolls who have never been near your business and for one reason or another think they are being clever or smart by leaving a one-star review or some unpleasant comment. To begin with, you can try and report this to Google but most of these “troll” reviews don’t breach their guidelines so Google won’t take them down. If you can’t get the review removed, then politely call the troll out and ask for further clarification/facts but don’t get into a heated exchange with them – they’re looking for attention.
Whilst it is incredibly frustrating and annoying that someone feels they can review your business unfairly or maliciously when you have worked so hard, most people looking at GMB can clearly see through this sort of negative behaviour. Why not be proactive and ask your customers to leave a review for you. Soon the negative one will be outnumbered.
Still have questions about Google My Business?
If you’d like to dicuss anything further, then why not get in touch and we can have a chat.