Google My Business is a free tool from Google to help businesses manage how they appear in Google search and maps. This is ideal for all businesses, but especially local businesses as when people search for businesses “near me”, only those businesses with a Google My Business page show up in the special search feature that Google displays first, before the rest of the search results.
The video below goes through the various features available on Google My Business and I have also gone into some detail in the article below as well.
Hello, I'm Lynda from Scullywag Services and I want to show you a little bit about Google My Business today. Google My Business is a free service from Google and it's just an incredible asset. If you're not using it I think you should sincerely think about using it.
Some people just don't have the time or the technical bent to use it successfully; and in that case, there's people like me that are more than willing to help you do so. So let's dive in and have a look.
So if we were to go to the front page of Google and type in a business name, if the business has a Google My Business page and it's been verified, it will show up here. So you can see this is mine for Scullywag Services. It has the address, the opening hours, my phone number.
You can book an appointment. So just by clicking that it will take you to my appointment page. You can see here I've got an app that puts the reviews I get from my Google My Business page here, and then people can just go through and book a consultation. And yes, because this is mine, I can go in and edit it.
So you can see over here, they're encouraging people to get more reviews for their business and they've got a nice easy link here that people can just copy and paste. Actually, I have over here on my website, actually implemented that. So, and I've used these two things, which I'll show you how they work in a minute but you can put the link here so that when somebody clicks on it, it goes straight to your Google map and it automatically pops up with the review box. They can rate you by stars and also share some details and they can include a photo if they wish. And you can see that there's other details about the business there too.
You can have posts on the Google My Business page, which is a very good thing. You can see how many views you've had. You can create other posts. So if you've got a new offer or a new event, or a new product.
So, you would just go in, upload a photo. So this is a photo, what do we got? One of my clients does modifications to quads and bikes.
So we can put in a price here. In this case, you can see because I'm in Australia, it is in Australian dollars. If you're in America, it would be American dollars, etc. It's a little bit of a pain because I do do business with clients overseas as well. It would be handy to be able to have American dollars as well, but that's just the way it is. I do get around that by just putting it in the description; the American price as well.
This is just a random amount I've put in there. If there was a range, you could put in here. So it could go from a minimum of 300 to say up to a thousand and you can see that. You can put in details. So, "We make your stuff go faster". And you can see here you've got 1500 characters to do. You can put a button on here. You can have book, order online, buy, learn more, sign up or call now; and you can preview it. If you had something and then if you put "order online", or the same for "buy now", or "buy", you need a link. So, that's not a real link, that's just a pretend one, but you can see it puts up a buy button and it would take you to that website. If you're happy with how it all looks, you can publish it and it's there.
With events you can see here they've got a start and an end date. I believe it goes up to a year in advance, so you can add a time as well. Particularly if you're doing something that's, you know, running from say 7:00 p.m. till midnight or something or whatever hours.
An offer, this might be like how they have here, "20% off in-store or online". Again, you might be, you know, just say we were doing a Christmas offer, you might want to do that from say November 30th,
midnight to Christmas Eve, at say 11:30. It doesn't say what time zone this is but this would, I assume, be set for whatever time zone your business address is for.
Add more details. You could change the photo, put in something a little bit more festive. This is nice, just something I was given by a client. She does a lot of lovely artwork. And then you would publish it.
You can see the preview there, Christmas offer blah blah blah. Obviously, you wouldn't say "We make your stuff go faster", that was just carry on from the previous one; but you can see the valid dates, from 30th of the 11th 2019, which is how the date format is done in Australia, to the 24th of the 12th, (20)19 at 11:30 p.m. What you can do too, if you know, if it's an ongoing offer, it's just once a year; you need to go in and update that. So, yes, you can create a post.
You can add photos. This is just details about your Google My Business. You've got photos by the owner. Customers can also do it.
Customers that are buying things, you know, as I was talking about that one client who does performance modifications. His clients love showcasing, you know, " look at my bike, it's so fast" or if you were a fashion label you might have customers who are sharing wearing your designs somewhere. If you were a restaurant or something, you might have customers taking photos of the food or a party there, and putting it up there.
You've got video. This one here is actually the Google one, just shows outside the business. You can add your own videos. I'm not sure if there's a limit to it. It may only be a few minutes but it may not. I'm not entirely sure about that.
You can put in interiors, exteriors, which again, this is just a Google-generated one, at work. Put in your team; that's just me. And then your identity. Which would be like your logo and your cover photo. You can sort by date or popularity.
And you can create an ad for Google AdWords here.
It just gives you an idea of what's been happening, oh yes, over the past 28 days. So it's been pretty slow. I haven't posted anything lately, and to be honest I've been focusing more on clients' websites and designs, but still, it's not too bad. You can see search views are up a little bit. Map views, 43.
Google virtual tours.
Get your ad back on Google.
You can see what your business looks like on maps or on search. That just shows you what it looks like to somebody else. Actually, it doesn't really because it still shows up as mine. But you can see that's what that looks like.
Customer photos. I assume that possibly, you get to edit that, customer photos if you're not happy with what they've put up there or it's a little bit risque or something.
Oh, learn more about your business. This is insights. Tells you how many searches, whether it's direct or discovery. So you can see 18 direct searches. So that means they went in and they typed in “Scullywag Services" and there's been five that they found your listing searching for a category product or service.
Businesses with recent photos typically receive more clicks to their websites. So they're encouraging you to post photos. There's a lot of, just a lot of really good advice on here.
You can sort it out by one week, one month or one quarter. You can see here the queries. There's something here. Somebody tried to type in business or something but it didn't work. I'll be interested to see what they came up with actually.
Also business, business management services, business open today, business service, open for business, social media consultant, web design Salisbury. Which is the next suburb over, and where I lived, till about a month or two ago. We can do the quarter. That's the quarter and the one month.
Where your customers view your business on Google. Listings on search or listings on maps. You can see the difference. Here this is what your business will look like on maps. And maps is very important too, because when people get on their mobile device and search for something, if you're, if you have a Google My Business profile and you're in that local area, particularly if you're well-reviewed and just, you know getting a lot of traffic, there's a chance that you might pop up quite high; and I'll show you that in a minute.
So that's Google, it's on the maps, as opposed to on the search. With search, It's a little bit different, and again it's different on the phone too.
So insights. Listings on maps. Some jump in map views. As I said I moved. So I took the address off for a little while there.
Listings on search. Customer actions. What they've done. Directions request hmmm 30 requests for directions. Phone calls.
What's this? Oh, photo views. So this is you, or me, and then there's businesses like you. So for some reason, I've got a big spike in photo views.
Photo quality. Number of photos that appear on your business compared to photos from other businesses. So I have more. Looks like I have an average of one more photo than most businesses. I need to update some of that as well because more photos because it does.. it just, it just helps.
And this is all your just information. Name of the business. What you actually do. Your physical address. You don't have to have your address shown here. You will need to give your address so that Google can send you out a postcard. So that they can verify the business.
For some businesses, they may be able to do it via phone or other methods but usually, they will send out a postcard and it'll have a code on it which you need to put in the Google My Business and that will verify your listing. It won't show up in search until that's done.
You've got the service areas. Google My Business does particularly well for local businesses. If you were, for example, a fish and chip shop and in the local area. When somebody types in "fish and chip shop" Google, particularly on a mobile phone, knows your location usually. So it will serve you up information.
So let's have a look actually. So, you can see here - Google wants to know your location. So, it knows my location and there's "The Fish Palace", which I've gotta say is really, really good. Because these businesses have Google My Business pages they appear here.
So you've got "R&W Salisbury Takeaway". It's another local one that's quite nice. "Facefood Kebab Fish and Chips", hmm never heard of it. Logan Road, so that's a little bit further afield but you can see here that it's got 65 reviews, an average of 3.8 for the reviews. So it's jumped up ahead of "The Fish Palace". Mind you, "The Fish Palace" has 48 reviews and it has a higher review, 4.3. " Salisbury Fish and Chips", or "Salisbury Takeaway" only has26 but it does have the highest rating.
So, it'll have a whole heap of places you can go through and see, and there's the map. And then underneath you have first off, the first one is just a definition of what a fish and chip shop is. "People also ask", and isn't that interesting I suppose I should have put "near me". So, let's try that "fish; fish and chip shop near me".
Ah, isn't this interesting? Because "The Fish Palace" is literally walking distance away from me, it has now jumped to the top of the queue. Then the Salisbury one, which is also close and then "Facefood Kebab Fish and Chips".
So, and then "The Fish Palace", you can see they've done well there. That's on UrbanSpoon, though, so that's a review site. Zomato again. TripAdvisor. So, yes, so it's quite interesting because if these businesses didn't have a Google My Business page, they're not going to appear here. These are Google My Business businesses.
So. But for someone like me, I service a lot of countries. So, I've got Australia, United States, Canada, yada, yada, yada, as well as some of my local suburbs.
For my opening hours, I just have open 24 hours a day. You might have noticed here, some of these will say closed and that's one of the things that you can search by. You can search by rating, you can search by whether they're open anytime, open now, 24 hours. You know, if it was a Sunday and you want to know who was open on Sunday. You can even do it down by time.
Visit history. Okay, phone number.
This is just, just to make your Google listing easier to find - it's just like a Twitter handle or Facebook page handle. You put your website in there. Also the appointment URL.
Oh, you've got your holiday hours. So, for example, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, Boxing Day, New Year's Eve, New Year's Day. Whether you're opened or closed or what hours you're working.
This is just something that it puts in. I don't know how you actually do this for this one. It's, it's obviously deduced that I'm a woman and that it's a woman-led business. So, it's done that one. I didn't have to do anything about that.
Just a quick blurb about what you offer. When it opened. You can add photos. You can close or remove the listing. Code - that is just for if you've got like a franchise or something. You've got labels for what you actually do. And if you've run ads, your AdWords will be there. And what else?
We have our reviews. "Show customers you care one response at a time", so you should always reply to them, and if you have the Google My Business app it will actually encourage you to do so.
Messaging, same thing. It's through the app and it's just something else that's really handy. If you're on a mobile device and you've got a question and you search for whatever the topic is whether it's a service or a product - you've come across a business and you can see their Google My Business information there and it has an option for you to message them direct. You know, it's just too easy! I mean you don't even have to go to their website to do so. It's there, so, it's just making things a little bit more; it's just easier for everybody.
So you can also put in your services. As I was talking before about the posts; the posts you can actually have photos and you can put in quite a bit of information and you can put in the price and a link to the website but there's also just services and I definitely recommend putting in the information here. There's no photos but you can put in prices and sort them out by categories. I've got website design, website care, social media, and additional services.
Now, for people that don't have a website, this is something that can be quite interesting. So this isn't live, but this is what Google has done with my information that I've given it and I'm not a hundred percent sure about this but this is the website here I imagine. So, it's not published, but if it was published, I imagine you can put this web address into a browser and it will come up with this here.
You can actually edit it a little bit. Put in photos and change the theme like if you wanted to have a different color. But you can see here "make an appointment" and it says, you know, what my designation is, where I am, my business hours.
It's taken the photos I've used. Its some taken the posts that I've done. Put all that information together like that. It's gone through and done the services. So, you've got testimonials. It encourages "write a review" or "read more". About us. Okay, so it's just prompting you what to do.
Gallery. Contact us. Tells you where are, shows you there on the map, which is really handy because Google is getting really quite funny with people using their maps on their own websites. They want you to jump through a few hoops for that now. Contact. So, call, address and opening hours.
It's not a over the top; it's just a very very basic website but it could certainly work. What have they got there? You can see your site has not yet published. I've got my own website so I don't need that but it is; it is interesting and I'll be interested to know.
It's trying to encourage people to buy (a domain name). You can see it gives some other options to buy. Mine is actually scullywag.com but if I didn't have a website and I wanted to; it looks like I could purchase one for $18 a year which is a reasonable price.
Buy it, and I wonder if that would actually automatically bring this over here. Which would be quite interesting. It's certainly a very budget-conscious alternative for somebody who doesn't want to jump into their own website just yet.
Users. This one will just have me because I manage my own but I look after a lot of clients' websites.
You can create an ad. Add a new location. Manage locations, which as you can see I've got some of my clients on here. Some of them are still pending verification. The verification is just so that Google knows that you're a genuine business.
Linked accounts. Okay, that's my AdWords settings. Oh, okay and this is just you know, what you'll be notified by from Google regarding what's going on. You put in your language, your preferred email. So yes, very interesting.
So, home, and I'll show you somebody else's. Let's have a look at Ritter Cycle Racing. This is the client that looks after high-performance modifications for bikes and that.
So, for his, you can see it's got his address and this shows that I visited last year, and for other clients who have been in the area it's quite interesting; because it'll show them, you know, when they were last there. It's got his phone number. We can put in some more information, business hours, he doesn't want his business hours there. He doesn't have an appointment link. He's kind of open all the time.
You can see his reviews here and it's encouraging us to add a post. We've got a lot of his stuff here; you can go straight to the website to buy. Let's have a look. So you can see this has had a 115 views but no clicks and see the photos. Reviews. Get more reviews.
This is interesting, it shows you what other businesses like his are posting so you can see what's going on; get some good ideas. Get custom email at your business. That's interesting. Google G Suite is very much like Google Gmail.
Yeah and here it is it's just encouraging him to get the Android app or the Apple app for it and it really is, like I said... this way customers can message you directly and it just notifies you. You can go in and have a look at all this stuff on your phone.
You can see here it's kind of saying complete your listing; add hours. So he doesn't want all that on there. Don't know that we have his services on there yet. No, we haven't. So that's something that we need to update for his Google My Business.
You can see here he's had 686 search views down - 9% His map views 1.68 K, down 78% and that's over the last 28 days. Searches and activity. So you can see he's had 58 website visits, 22 calls, 502 photo views and 16 Direction requests over the past 28 days. He is very very busy, so hence, why he's reluctant to kind of do some more work on this.
Yes, photos. You can see we've got photos there. I think we've got some videos here, oh no, we haven't but he has videos that we could certainly upload there and which we need to do. You can see the interior, the exterior and yeah we can see the cover photo and the logo but definitely more can be done with that.
Products beta - what is that about? "1302 potential customers viewed your business on Google last month. Showcase products to them for free" - yeah we need to do that; we're going to do that.
That's going to be really good because you can do it as a post but having products is really, really good. As I said he is in America, it's possible that this is rolling out in America before Australia and some other countries; but very very interesting.
See users here; so you can see here's the primary owner I'm the manager. Get custom Gmail. Manage location. Settings.
I also want to show you something that Google my business looks after. It's marketingkit.withgoogle.com. "Free stickers, posters, social post and more from your business profile on Google" and it just; you can download these stickers to encourage people to review; and in fact - here it is - on the testimonial submissions page I've actually used that there, just used the photos. "Review us on Google" "Follow us on Google" but if you had a bricks and mortar store you would certainly want to get those printed out and encourage people.
You know, sometimes people just need a little nudge. You know? Review us on Google, follow us on Google. You could also share that on your social media. So I'm just gonna go in and have a look at mine.
So you've got the window stickers for your business. Download to print and share today. Download your free kit to print and share today. You download it. They come up quite big actually. These are social media things and you can see you can share it on Facebook, Twitter or your Google My Business profile which is not a bad thing.
You can go in here and next. Choose a style and color. So you've got some seasonal ones .some...BBQ. You've got art. You've got Google ones, which are pretty plain. Sign script; you can put a couple of colors or chalkboard. So let's have a look. Finish. So let's put this on Google. Website address there; and you can see it's there.
This is what I love it does a little video for you and I just think this is just incredible. It's very similar to what Facebook does when they do the birthday videos and that for you. They just take your content and make a little video for you and that's just a nice little ad to share with people.
So, you can share it on Facebook on Twitter or you can just copy the link. You can actually follow that link you'll see that it actually goes to YouTube which is owned by Google and it's part of this - a Google small business. It's unlisted so it's not seen unless you have a link to it but certainly something that you can show, and I just think it's cute. I think it's a great little gimmick. You can see there's 20 likes on social media on Facebook; one mention on Twitter.
So yes - and you go to Google small business. I have a feeling this is going to get a lot of information. Why would you not pay attention to what Google tells you about how to make your website more popular and desirable to website visitors?
So it's all fairly simple but if you'd like somebody to help you with this I do offer a service for $149 Australian or its $99 American, yes $99 American. I set up your Google My Business. As it says there - it literally puts you on the map with Google. It's important for every business but especially so for those serving a local community.
So, that's Google My Business. I think it's an incredible opportunity to promote your business online and if you're a little bit hesitant to dive in yourself; I certainly am very willing and able to help you with that.
Thank you for listening and I look forward to talking to you next time.
When you type in a query to Google, it uses your location (if you have allowed Google to know your location) to show you the most relevant results closest to you. Below you can see how this shows up when you search on desktop.
As you can imagine, this is a huge boost for those businesses that are featured in the listing. Usually, the top three will be shown, but there is a link underneath them (“more places”) that allows people to explore other businesses listed.
So, how do you make the list? Well first off, your business needs to be listed on Google My Business.
How to create your Google My Business Account
- Step 1: If you already have a Google Account you want to be associated with your business log into that, or create a new one for your business.
- Step 2: Go to google.com/business and select “Manage Now”.
- Step 3: Enter your business name and agree to the Terms of Service.
- Step 4: Enter your business address. If you don’t have customers visiting your business premises you will be given the option to hide your address on the listing.
- Step 5: You will be asked to enter your service areas. Enter as many as applicable.
- Step 6: Choose your category. You will have to select from the options that Google gives you, so if you can’t find your first choice, try a few variations.
- Step 7: Enter your contact details (phone number and website address if applicable)
- Step 8: Finish and verify the business. For verification, you may be given a few options (phone, email, or postcard). However, sometimes having a postcard sent is the only option available.
- Step 9: Make sure you verify your listing, as you won’t show up in customer searches as shown above if your business is not verified.
After your business has been verified by Google, when someone types in your business name in Google, your business listing will show up at the top of the search results for those using a mobile device (pictured) and to the top right for those on desktop.
The listing has the business name, along with the reviews rating and numbers, the business category, the address if you have opted to display it and whether you are open or closed at the time of the search.
Underneath that, you can see that the listing makes it very easy for someone to contact you directly from the Google search page, instead of having to visit your website first to find these details.
In the overview section, your phone number, messaging, directions, and website are all available (depending on whether you have chosen these features or not).
You can use the messaging feature if you download the Google My Business app. The app not only allows you to receive messages directly from the Google search page, but you can also respond to reviews and check out your Google search statistics and insights.
If you have listed your address, there will be directions to your business, as well as a listing on Google maps. If you have a website, you can list it here, or for those that don’t have a website already, you can have Google generate one for you.
Also available but not shown in this screenshot is a section where you can put your appointment calendar for clients to schedule an appointment (if you have an appointment scheduler).
You can log into your Google My Business account by going to the address you used to sign-up, google.com/business. If you are already signed into the Google account related to your business, you can search for your listing on Google, and select an option (edit info, create post, add photo, reviews, creat ad) to edit the listing from there.
The general public can also edit your listing, so it is a good idea to lot into your account from time to time to check if something has been added. This could be a review, or someone adding photos, or adding information about your business (Google does ask people questions about various businesses they have visited or been near from time to time).
When you do log-in to your Google My Business account you will have several sections to choose from.
The home tab has a general overview of your listing. You can create a post, add a photo or create an ad from here.
There is a rundown of the performance of your listing over the past 28 days. It gives a breakdown of who has seen your listing and what they did after viewing it, the insights section goes into more details about this.
The performance of your latest post, photos and customer reviews are also in this section.
If you have not fully completed your profile, you will be encouraged to do so from here.
This is also where you can grab the link for your Google My Business customer reviews. Encourage customers to leave a review on Google where possible, as this will have some bearing on your placement in the search results when people look for a business “near me”.
There are various post types that you can enter in your Google My Business account.
- What’s New
You can add a photo or video to any of these post types and all of them except the offer post allows you to add a button. Button choices include “book”, “order online”, “buy”, “learn more”, “sign up”, and “call now”.
The offer type posts automatically come with a “view offer” button and appear at the top of your listing.
Events and Offers can have start and end dates, along with start and end times. Products can have a fixed price a price range. Price is in the currency of the country that the listing is from.
There is plenty of room for descriptions with 1500 characters allowed.
How many views, and how many clicks throughs on your buttons is visible at the bottom of every post. Sharing buttons for Twitter, Facebook and Email are included along with easy links for you to copy and paste where you chose to.
The info section is where you can update your address and business hours. There is also a section for holiday hours or closures. Google will quite often email you to remind you to put in your holiday hours if you forget.
This is also where you put in your service areas, phone number, website, opening date, a short description of the business and can add highlights (women-led, veteran-owned, wheelchair access, etc). There is also the option to chose a handle for your business along the lines of a Twitter handle.
You can view your listing on maps or search from here (although you need to view it incognito or in a browser where you are not logged into your google account to see how it appears to others).
Many of the changes you make may need to be reviewed first, but this usually only takes a few days. You can also close or remove the business listing from here.
This is where the real fun starts. You can view a breakdown of your statistics for your business listing.
First Google breaks down how customers search for your business. Direct refers to those customers who searched for your business by name. Discovery refers to those that found your listing by searching for a category, service or product. Branded are those that found your company by searching for a brand related to your business.
All these details are presented in a circle graph that you can click on to reveal more information about each section (see pic below). Google also prompts you with actions to take to increase your visibility and visits to your website.
The reviews you have received have their own section. You can reply to reviews from here, and if you have the Google My Business app, it will prompt you to do so.
Google has a messaging system that customers can use to message you directly from your Google My Business listing. To use this service, you need to have the app installed.
The ability to message a business directly from the search page, especially for customers on a mobile device is extremely convenient and may prove the deciding factor on which business listing they chose to contact.
As you would expect, the photos section is where you can upload photos, but also videos. The photo section is broken down into various sections:
- By Owner
- By Customer
- At work
This looks to be a new feature and not available in all regions or for all business categories. There are quite a number of different scheduling or reservation apps that can be integrated with your Google My Business listing. These seem particularly targeted toward restaurants, hotels and ticket sellers.
This is very similar to the product section you can use in the Posts section of the listing. The difference between the two is that you can separate your product listings into categories, making it quicker and easier for customers to find what they want.
If your business offers services, you can list them here. The service categories you offer will need to be selected from those that Google gives you to select from. You can, however, add your custom services under the categories.
Both the products (beta) and Services sections seem to be determined by your business category and may not be available to all businesses.
Google takes all the information you have provided, along with your customer reviews and mocks up a website for you. You can choose to publish the website or not.
For those that do publish the website, you can edit it to some degree. The website address is a sub-domain (https://your-business.business.site) but you can opt to purchase a domain name and I assume attach it to the website.
This lists the primary owner of the listing along with any managers or site managers. Other owners can be added to the listing, but there must always be a primary owner. If the primary owner wishes to remove themselves from the listing they must transfer the primary ownership to another user.
Managers have most of the same capabilities as owners but cannot remove a listing or add other users. Site managers have fewer capabilities than managers but can be upgraded. More information regarding users can be found here.
Create an Ad
Clicking on this link will take you to Google Ads where you can set up or renew a Google ad.
Add new location
This is where you set-up any new listings connected to your google account.
If you have more than one Google My Business listing attached to your google account, they will all be listed here. You see the verification status of all listings and enter verification codes for them.
Reviews for all the listings can be managed from this section. You can reply to reviews, as well as delete or edit your replies. You can also flag as inappropriate any review that you don’t agree with.
This is where you can view and manage link requests from other Google products, such as AdWords or Merchant Center.
This is where you select your email settings for what you want to hear from Google about your listing.
This is the help section from Google to do with the business listings.
Where to from here?
If you have a Google My Business listing you can log into marketingkit.withgoogle.com which is well worth checking out. You can download window stickers to promote your Google business listing (Follow us on Google, Review us on Google, Book with us on Google).
Google takes your reviews and fashions social media posts for you to share in various ways, including on your Google My Business listing. I particularly like the promotional video they design for your business – you can see mine at the end of the video at the top of this article.
So, that’s Google My Business. It is an excellent tool to manage and promote your business online. For those that prefer to have someone else look after their listing, I offer a Google My Business Set-up service.