Small and midsize businesses (SMBs) of all types should have a presence on Google My Business. By setting up an account on Google My Business, when someone searches for your company, a box will appear along with the search results. This box contains all the key information about your business, such as open hours and contact details, as well as your location on Google Maps.
Even if you have no physical location, you need a Google My Business account. This will give you the chance to manage information associated with your business, such as your website URL and company description. Plus, you’ll receive a number of additional tools. These include basic analytics about who is searching for your business and what they are doing. You’ll also have the chance to build a single-page website and post short pieces of content about product launches, events, and promotions. All this is great for SEO — and everything is free.
Claiming Your Google Maps Listing
- Sign in to your existing Google account that you’d like to use as the admin of your Google My Business page.
- Go to business.google.com and click Start now at the top right corner.
- Enter the name of your business and click Next. If you business pops up as a selection, click on your business.
- Enter the street address of your business and click Next. You may also be asked to position a marker for the location of your business on a map to indicate which side of the street you are on and where your store entrance is located. If you manage a service-area business, follow these extra steps: Check the box for I deliver goods and services to my customers. Optionally, check the box for Hide my address (it’s not a store) Only show region –. Click Next. Select a delivery area option and click Next.
- Use the search field to select a business category and click Next.
- Enter a phone number or website URL for your business, then click Next.
- To complete sign-up and verify your connection to this business, click Continue.
- Select a verification option such as by mail. You will need to wait for the postcard to arrive in the mail and come back to this url to verify at a later point.
Adding Photos to Your Business Listing
Your Google My Business listing will be far more appealing to users if it has pictures that represent what your business does. The right images will also help customers recognize you immediately. There are a few types of photos you need:
- A profile photo. This photo will appear when someone checks out your Google My Business profile.
- A cover photo. Including a cover photo allows you to showcase your business’s personality. When you upload a cover photo, this becomes your preferred photo. Although there is no guarantee that it will populate as the first image in searches for your business, choosing something as your cover photo does tell Google that you prefer to display this image.
- Additional photos. Uploading more photos allows you to spotlight features of your business that matter to customers when they’re making a purchase decision. Google My Business allows you to add photos in the categories of 360, interior, and exterior.
As well as photos, you can add videos to your listing. This is a great way to tell a story, show behind the scenes, or otherwise explain what makes you different from the competition.
Uploading the Right Photos and Videos
For an optimal appearance on your listing, upload photos in JPG or PNG format with file sizes of between 5 KB and 5 MB. At a minimum, images should be 720 pixels tall by 720 pixels wide.
Your videos need to be no longer than 30 seconds and can have a file size of up to 100 MB. The resolution should be at least 720 p.
In addition to meeting size and format requirements when choosing what photos and videos to upload, think about quality. You want to give the impression that your business is professional and committed to providing a high-caliber service. Make sure that any visuals you add to your Google My Business listing are in focus and well lit. They should have few alterations and filters (if any at all). Finally, consider what message the visuals portray about your business and how this contribute your brand image.