In addition to its search engine, the American IT company Google has become the market leader in many areas of our lives. This also includes city maps, other map services and A to B navigation. Google Maps has become a synonym for geographical search queries for Germans. This article shows you how your company can be found well on Google Maps.
Searching for products from the region and local dealers and service providers account for more than half of the total search volume on search engines like Google. If you are one of those local heroes who are the reason for this high level of search queries, a visible presence in search result lists with a local reference is very important. Google uses a lot of information from its map service Google Maps to answer local search queries. A map section is displayed with red pins pointing out suitable stores. In addition, the search engine adds a special listing with local search results to the top 10 hits. It contains the three companies marked in the map section with their most important contact details and additional information.
How do I register my business with Google Maps?
Newly founded companies with their own retail store should soon find their way to Google’s maps because of Google’s strong presence in the search for local providers. This is much easier than you think! If you haven’t used a Google service for your company yet, then register a Google account for your own shop – preferably at the e-mail address name. If you already have such a Google account, then log in. When you are logged in, you can now access Google Maps. Enter the name of your new company in the search field. Now three things can happen:
Since your store is brand new, Maps can’t find it and wants you to “add the missing location”. Click on this link and follow the dialog boxes that follow.
Google Maps will already find your store, but will ask under the address block that appears on the left side of Maps, “Are you the store owner? Confirm this by clicking on the question and follow the instructions in the next dialog boxes.
The map service will find your business, but will not ask you about your business ownership. Instead, the address block says “Suggest a change”. Then the Maps entry is already in another Google Account. Bad if you don’t know in whom! But in many cases this is clear. You must now approach this person and ask for the transfer of ownership.
At the end of the registration process there is a verification. Google Maps uses it to check whether the newly registered company really exists at the specified location. The easiest way for Google to do this is by sending a postcard. If the postcard is delivered and the verification code printed on it is entered into Google Maps by the business owner, Google has this important confirmation.
Set up Google My Business
Registering your store with Google Maps opens a Google My Business account in your Google Corporate Account. Postcard pin code verification takes place in Google My Business. In the future, you will also maintain all maps information for your company here. With the help of this “My Business” account, you can also post short news items about your shop on Google. You can also reply to reviews your customers leave on Google. You’ll also have access to a statistic that tells you how many times all this information has been accessed.
Optimize Google My Business
Soon the question arises how to optimize this “Google My Business” profile so that it is offered to matching Google users as often as possible as a search result. The first step towards this goal is to completely fill the company profile in Google My Business. Enter all your company’s contact details exactly as they already appear in the imprint of your website:
- Company name, e.g. dskom GmbH
- Street, house number, postcode and city
- Under the sentence “I offer products and services at the location of my customers” click on “No”.
- Opening hours
- Special opening hours
- Telephone number (exactly the one that can be found in the imprint)
- If necessary, a URL for appointments
One more word about the category selection. Only suggested “My Business” categories may be selected here. Keep on researching in the suggestion lists until you have found the optimal category for your business. If there are two categories that fit, select the more important one as the main category. Avoid, however, storing more than two categories. The indication of opening hours is very important. If your company has no classic opening hours, then please enter the times of telephone availability (e.g. Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.). Enter special opening hours to let Google Maps users know what your opening hours and availability are on public holidays and bridge days.
Photos for the “Google Maps” entry in Google My Business
Only when you have uploaded at least a background image, a profile image and the company logo via “Add photos” is the “Google My Business” profile of your company 100% complete – the first optimization step has been completed. If you have more images available, please also upload interior shots, exterior shots, “photos at work” and from the team. You know: A picture says more than a thousand words. What then succeeds only with ten or twenty pictures?
Contributions – Publish current news and offers on Google
Since the early summer of 2017, Google in My Business has offered the opportunity to publish contributions to the company in the “Google Maps” entry on Google. An image, a text with up to 300 words and a link to further information can be entered. The current message can inform Google users, promote a campaign, advertise an event, offer a product for sale or make an offer to Google users. If it is an event, you can also enter an event title, a start date and an end date. Each contribution is displayed on Google in the company profile for 7 days. If several news items are active at the same time, Google presents them in a news carousel. If a post expires, Google sends you an e-mail. You can then replace the expired article with a new message. Use this prominent advertising space which Google makes available free of charge. Point out special events, introduce new products and invite people to special offers!