Using Google Places to Help You Get Listed
Google came out with one of the interesting changes last year when it tweaked search engine update a bit. For the first time, search engine results included Google Places listings in addition to the existing organic results. This change has brought about interesting reactions among many business owners. While those business owners who had not established Google Places found their listings missing from the top 10 results for the first time, other owners who had actually created Google Places for their business listings, found themselves within the top results on the first page.
It is now apparent that for any business entity to rank high in the search results for a set of keywords based on keywords, they need to set up a listing in Google Places for their business. Given below are some steps which you can use to create these listings.
- Visit http://www.google.com/local/add/
- Using your business email address, register your business listing with Google account and then visit Google Places.
- Get you business listing checked. Find out whether the listing is already set up for you in Google Places or not. You can do this by searching in Google manually. You should be able to see the listing in Google Maps indicating that it is verified from the owner. If it still remains unverified, the listing can be claimed by you and you can fill in the details accordingly.
- Make sure you don’t add PO boxes while entering the details and your business address. You only need to add the physical address. Make sure you go through Google guidelines while providing all these details.
- The option “Areas Serviced” has to be chosen next. You need to provide all relevant details here, irrespective of the type of business you run. Using this option you can specify how your business serves your customers. For example, if you’re a service provider or running an online business, you can choose the option that indicates to customers that your business serves them at their location. Similarly, if your business serves only those customers who visit your place, you can mention it by selecting an option that clearly states that customers need to walk-in to your place to get serviced. After mentioning these details you need to specify distances your business serves from your current location, states, etc. The details you provide here will have an impact when customers look around for services that you’re offering.
- It is important that you create a keyword-rich listing. However, this does not mean you start adding keywords into your business address or business name, locations or addresses. There’s an option for you to add these in a separate section called Additional Details.
- A listing that is enriched with content will add value to your efforts when people recognize it immediately. So make sure you add some quality information and some videos and photos to your listing. You are allowed to use up to 10 images in your listing. Out of this, one image can be your business logo and the rest can be the images related to the services and products of your business.
- Business address then needs to be verified. Google’s system will provide you with the PIN required for your verification through phone, if you have chosen the option to get verified through your business phone. But make sure that your phone is not linked to an automated-line. Your business address will be verified using post. This might take up to 3 weeks if your listing is based in Australia.
- Once you’re provided with the PIN number, enter it in your system and get it listed live on the Google’s system.
- Once your business listing is live, make sure that you update it regularly using adverts, deals and offers. This can be done by logging into your account. The updates you make here will be there for everybody to see for at least 30 days. Make use of these features available to you and provide all relevant information to people that they might be looking for.
Google is strict when it comes to its guidelines. Your listing can either be removed or penalized if it is loaded with lots of keywords, or if there are many listings provided for your business, or when the location provided by you does not exist. When you change your business address, Google needs to be provided with a new listing.
Hurry up; make use of these features to propel your business forward.