There are at least three fairly simple and major advantages to claiming your Google My Business listing:
- Google My Business is the new name for Google Places, so claiming your listing means you control your presence on Google Maps and other related services. If you are a firm with an interest in acquiring local clients, this is important.
- Though rare, your listing on Google Maps is open to attack if unclaimed. These attacks can be extremely damaging. There’s a great article on why and how here.
- If your firm ever moves offices and you have not claimed your Google My Business listing, it could become hard to do so. This means clients who use Google to find your contact details (and we all do that from time to time) will only be able to see your old information.
As marketing efforts go then, claiming your Google My Business listing is fairly important. Not only do you protect yourself from malicious attacks but you also secure your present and future listing on searches of Google Maps: clients who want to find you, can do so quickly and easily. What’s more: there’s a minor SEO boost to securing your listing and Google My Business will automatically create a Google+ page for your business, which can also help with SEO.
Ready to claim your Google My Business listing? Here’s how you do it.
- Go to Google My Business.
- Click the ‘get on Google’ button.
- Type the name of your business. If you have a common name, then include a comma and your town.
- From the list of results, select your business.
One of two things will now happen. You may be told that someone has already claimed your business and you need to request admin rights. Don’t panic! Often this means that at some point, long ago, someone in the office tried to sort out your Google Maps listing. Click the ‘request admin rights’ button and ask around the office to see if anyone has received an email from Google. If they haven’t, then this still isn’t the end of the world. Google are aware that these changes are catching people out and are often surprisingly quick and responsive with their help. Click the cog at the top right and select ‘help’. There is an option there specifically for people who have had their business verified by someone else, or you can start the process here.
The other thing that will happen is that Google will ask you to confirm you are an authorised representative of the business and will then ask you to provide evidence of this. This can be through a postcard sent to your office, or an automatic phone call to your registered number. Either method is fine and will deliver you a code. When you receive it, return to Google My Business and enter the code. You’ll notice your listing now has a green tick in a shield and/or the word ‘verified’, depending on which page you end up on.
Congratulations, you’ve just secured a large part of your Google presence! Your marketing for this week is done!