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Adding a local business to Google can bring about powerful changes that not only strengthen the online presence of the business but also help them attract more customers.
The good news is that, at this day and age, if you are wondering how to add a business to Google, Google makes it pretty simple.
Another great thing about knowing how to add business to Google is that you can benefit greatly from local SEO.
With SEO strategies and approaches that are aimed at helping you attract more traffic from local prospects and customers that belong to your target locations, you are bound to witness an increase in lead conversion.
So, what can you do to add your business to Google? How can you ensure that your business is optimized for local searches?
Here, we discuss in detail all that you need to know about adding your business to Google and running a successful local SEO strategy.
Optimizing your business for Google My Business
Google My Business is a tool that has made it so much easier for small and medium-sized businesses to be found online.
It has become an integral part of local SEO because it allows your business to be trusted and supported by Google.
Google is committed to providing users with accurate and reliable information, and it will only showcase your business online when it can be sure that it is legitimate. This is what Google My Business (GMB) is for.
To make the most of all that this tool has to offer, you first have to create a Google My Business page and get yourself verified. This is the first step on how to add business to Google My Business and it lets you manage how your business appears online in Google Search results, Maps as well as Google+.
GMB lets you add your business name, your location, contact information, as well as your hours of service. You can even monitor and respond to customer reviews and add photos related to your business.
All these make your business appear more legitimate and trustworthy to local prospects who are searching for your business online or are typing in keywords that are related to your business.
You can even access valuable data such as the number of clicks, calls, bookings, follows, and more that you receive through your Google business listing.
This knowledge of how your customers and prospects are interacting with your business provides you with insight into how well your business is optimized for local SEO.
How to add business to Google Maps
So, how to add business to Google Maps then? Once you provide the correct location or address of your business when setting up your GMB account and after your business has been verified, your customers will be able to easily identify your business on Google Maps.
At the time of creating your Google My Business account, you will be asked where you want the location of your business to appear on Google Maps. Once you agree to this, it means that your business can be viewed on Google Maps and this comes with plenty of benefits.
For instance, if you have a watch repair shop and a user in your area searches for “watch repair shops near me” on Google, then they will be shown your business, along with the address, contact information, reviews, and pictures, and other information available.
This person may not have visited your shop before but if they can easily locate you on Google Maps, they are much more likely to come to your shop to get their watch repaired.
In other words, knowing how to add business to Google Maps and doing it correctly help make your business look more legitimate and attract more customers because people know exactly where to find your business.
How can you verify your business to Google?
An important part of how to add business to Google is to verify your business.
Once you set up a GMB account and add your business to Google Maps, Google needs to verify that you have provided all the correct information and that you are a real and trustworthy business.
There are different ways of verifying your business to Google and these include:
The option to verify over email is available only for certain businesses.
Here, Google will send you a unique code over email and you have to use this code to verify your identity.
Another verification option is by phone. Google will give you a phone call and provide you with the unique verification code. Just like email, this option is available only for certain businesses.
This is the most common option for verification of business.
Here, Google will send you a postcard using snail mail. The postcard will contain your unique verification code and you can then use this code to verify your business online.
4: Bulk verification
Bulk verification is an option that is ideal for businesses with multiple locations or outlets.
For businesses with more than 10 locations, you are required to submit an additional form if you want to have all your locations verified at once.
If you want this option, all you have to do is click “Chain” when you click “Get verified” and then enter all the information regarding your different business locations. It usually takes up to a week or so for Google to process your request.
It is important that you fill in the correct information while creating your Google My Business account.
If there is lack of consistency in the information you provide and Google cannot determine which business information is correct, it will likely not show your business at all in the search results.
This is why a huge part of knowing how to add business to Google is making sure that you provide accurate and consistent information about your business.
Google My Business Vs Google+ Vs Google Places
When you are looking for steps on how to add a business to GMB, you need to know the difference between Google My Business, Google+ and Google Places.
First, let’s clear up the fact that Google Places does no longer exist. It used to be the main tool on Google that lets businesses manage their online presence and profiles, but it was shut down in 2014, and since then, Google My Business has taken its place.
As of today, GMB is the main platform where you can manage your business’ Google appearance.
Next, what is Google+? It’s the social network of Google that allows you to interact with your audience through your business page. You can easily access your Google+ account from the dashboard of GMB.
It should be noted that you don’t necessarily have to have a Google+ account in order to use Google My Business.
On the other hand, Google My Business is a business tool that has become more or less essential for any modern business.
It has grown to become one of the most effective methods for businesses to create a trusted online presence, and is one of the first steps of any successful local SEO strategy.
Once you know how to add business to Google and make the most of all that Google My Business has to offer for small and medium-sized local businesses, you are likely to see great improvements in brand awareness, increase in website traffic as well as paying customers that ultimately help you increase your bottom line and contribute to the growth of your business. The best part is that all this is absolutely free of cost.