Not only is Google the most used search engine in the world, it also offers many different services, apps etc. that millions of people use every day. Thus it also offers countless opportunities for small businesses to promote themselves and really get their name out there. Many small business owners may overlook it, but Google Maps is definitely a tool that you should be paying some attention!
When a search is conducted for an establishment or business on Google, the top result comes up along with a map showing its location, at the right side of the screen. This makes it easy for consumers to find what they are looking for and for tourists or travelers, locating lodging, food and shopping is easier than ever. If you have not put together your business profile on Google Maps, you should do it right away.
Creating your Business Listing on Google Maps
What you will need to do in order to set up a nice profile for your business is head over to Google Places. Once you are there, and you sign in or create an account, you can add a business. The first part of the information required is fairly standard, the name, address and phone number, after that you may provide a description of the business. To make your description work for you, you will need to include:
- Your business type i.e. Restaurant, plumber, doctor, Ostrich farmer etc.
- Pertinent information about your product or business i.e. if you own a restaurant, include the type of food that you sell.
You want to be sure that your description includes keywords that people will use when searching for your items or services. As an example, again using a restaurant for demonstration purposes, the words people might use to search for you are:
Okay, you get the idea; put the names of items that you sell in your description so that when that word is searched your business listing will come up in connection with it. The next thing that you will be able to do is set your hours of operation as this is always among the most popular questions, do not neglect it, because it will help you bypass many phone calls looking for this information. Lastly, you can add a picture of your business or logo to the listing and you are good to go! If you wish to take it a step further, you can upload photos and videos to attach to your listing. Now you have a business listing that is informative, attractive and will appear whenever there is a search done for your business, or a business like yours is being searched for in your area.
Don't forget it
Once your listing is up, you may be tempted to forget it; however, customers can place comments and reviews on your page. These comments are valuable feedback that let you know what you are doing right, or wrong. It pays to keep these in mind, as these comments provide you with valuable feedback. If you see a pattern in your reviews, change your menu here and there according to these comments, and you could see your restaurant becoming more and more popular!
Google Maps is an excellent tool for marketing your business. It helps you to gain exposure, and puts your business at the top of the results when it is searched. If you have a website, you can connect it to your business listing also and create a web of local marketing that will vault your marketing efforts from blah to brilliant.