In 2014 summer, Google launched the free service for small and medium-sized businesses “My Business.” Let’s see what are the actual opportunities for business development opens Google?
It allows owners of small companies, cafes and shops to manage information about their company, service or product simultaneously on Google+, Google Search and Google Maps.
Google implemented in a single service the functionality and capabilities of several of its tools that will help the owner of a small company to promote their business in search:
… on Google Maps, where users can find a route to your office or store, opening hours, and one-click to call your phone number in a mobile browser:
… and also receive information about the company, share their opinions and feedback on products and services, distribute your content using Google+:
How it works
The service allows you to add your company to the social network Google+, which has never become a worthy competitor to Facebook and, apparently, will soon cease to exist in its current state and become two separate projects – Photos and Streams. But, nevertheless, while the search engine still takes into account the signals of Google+ when ranking sites in the result. In addition, by motivating your potential and current customers to subscribe to the company’s page on Google+, you get an additional channel of communication with your audience. There you will be able to report special offers and discounts, show “goods face” with the help of high-quality photos or videos. For your subscribers, this is also an additional opportunity to share information, leave feedback and mark your favorite products and services using the Google+ button. Information about the number of subscribers can be displayed in Google Search results, which also affects the company’s ranking and user confidence.
By adding contact details and company hours, the company’s address will automatically appear on Google Maps and in the search. Thus, if a client searches for a café nearby from his smartphone, he will see all the nearest establishments marked on the maps, including your cafe, and if you wish, he can call and book a table. If a client purposefully travels to your office, all he has to do is type in the name of your company in the search, he will see the address and be able to route to him in Google Maps. Agree, this is extremely convenient and allows you to stay in touch with customers in any situation.
By tracking the statistics of a page on Google+, you can get information about how the audience interacts with your content: the number of views and clicks, car routes (areas from which users requested directions to your company), the number of phone calls to your company number. The service has the ability to view data from an associated Google Analytics account or YouTube channel, as well as place an AdWords Express advertisement and track its performance.
Google offers another tool – Hangouts. This software is for instant messaging and video conferencing with two or more users. In fact, it replaces three Google Talk, Google+ systems, as well as online broadcast via YouTube. The service is available through Gmail, Google+, Youtube, mobile applications for Android and iOS, as well as through the eponymous extension and browser application for Google Chrome and Chrome OS, which opens up wide opportunities for its use.
“My business” is useful, including for companies that provide field services (that is, they may not have a permanent office), as well as for those who work offline, and especially for those who do not even have their own website. Having added data about the company in the service, they will be reflected in the search results for your region, shown on the map, and you will also have the opportunity to work with the responses of your consumers. And the statistics will help you to find out how customers find out about your company and from where they go to the Google+ page.
Access to the service is available not only from a PC, a convenient mobile application for Android and iOS allows you to manage the service, respond to reviews, change company information, add photos or videos at any time.
How to connect Google My Business?
Go to https://plus.google.com/u/0/dashboard, and enter the name of your business.
Enter your company address. If the company does not have a permanent office or it provides exit services, do not forget to check the box below “I deliver goods and services to my customers. ” and o hide the address, just check the option.
Drag and place the pointer to point your location on the map.
Indicate the area you serve.
Choose your business category.
Enter the contact details you want to show to your customers.
Click the Finish button to complete the process.
Please note that the address must be confirmed physically. For this, Google will send a letter with the code to be entered on your company’s Google business page within 1-2 weeks. The code is valid for 30 days.
Next, you need to fill in as much as possible the data about the company: opening hours, telephone, description, add photos.
Link the page to the company’s website, confirm the email address, etc.
Open the page.
Congratulations! You can start developing your business in Google. For full registration, it remains only to wait for the letter confirming the address.
Let’s sum up
The main amenities of the Google My Business service are:
- The speed of updating company information simultaneously for all devices: smartphones, tablets and PCs.
- Great opportunities to interact with your potential buyers.
- Broad analytical data allows you to better understand your customers and effectively optimize your company’s promotion on the network.
- The presence of a mobile application makes it possible to interact with the service anywhere and at any time.
- Benefits for the promotion of the company’s website in search. Google receives up-to-date contact information, as well as Google+ signals, all of which is taken into account when ranking a site in a search.