Apart from being a search engine giant, Google also happens to be one of the review sites a business owner should know about, thanks in major part to products like Google Search, Google Maps, and Google+ (Google+ Local) – all of which display business information that includes reviews and ratings. It therefore goes without saying that you should claim your business listing on Google and make sure that all your information there are up to date.
Recently, the company announced the launch of Google My Business, a dashboard that streamlines the management of your business information across multiple Google sites, services, and products.
If you previously used Google Places for Business, Google+ Local, or Google+ Pages Dashboard to manage your business information, your account has been automatically upgraded to Google My Business.
Meanwhile, if you have not claimed your business on Google, here’s a step-by-step guide:
Step 1. Visit https://www.google.com/business/ and sign in or create a Google account for your business.
Step 2. Once logged in, you can search by business name and address by typing in the given search box. Search results will appear in a list as well as on the map, and from those choices you can choose the business you’re trying to claim.
If none of these results match your business, you can simply click “Add Your Business.” (You will then be prompted to choose your business type: storefront (restaurants, hotels, etc.), service area (taxi service, delivery, etc.), or brand (products, brands, causes, etc.).
Step 3. The next step is verification. Just like when you claim your Yahoo Local listing, you’ll also have to verify to Google that the business you’re claiming ownership of is really yours. The verification code will be mailed to you – this takes one to two weeks – and once you’ve entered the code into your account, then you’ll finally be able to start managing your local business information on Google. Congrats!
Managing multiple business locations: It’s important to get verified because that’s also the only way you’ll be able to manage multiple business locations. If, for example, your business has ten or more locations, you can sign into your account and add them all at once using the bulk upload tool. Just visit Google My Business Locations to upload locations and edit the information associated with each.