Google Places is an online local directory for business owners to submit their business online and be searchable by potential customers looking for local businesses in their area. This can range from local restaurants, cafes to plumbers and web developers. Google listings, usually appear above ‘natural’ or ‘organic listings’ within the online search results.
Listing your business
When submitting your business for listing it is important to follow the guidelines set out by Google, which can be found at http://static.googleusercontent.com/media/www.google.com/en//help/hc/images/Google_Places_OneSheeter.pdf
Important things to consider:
- Business Title: Business name only, don’t not stuff with keywords
- Business Categories: Use the categories suggested by Google as these are more prominent and will help rank your business higher.
- Business Description: Try to incorporate your keywords when typing your description. Try to make this not look spammy.
- Business Images: Upload images of your business as this will make your listing look more professional.
- Comprehensive Information: It’s important to list as much information about your business as possible, this will not only assist a user to make an informed decision, but will also help your business rank higher, receive better ratings and look more professional within the Google network.
Verifying your Google Listing
To combat spam business listings Google now does not send an SMS when you are attempting to verify your business listing for the first time, or when you are updating your listing. Instead, a postcard will be sent to your business address on submission. Furthermore, they will verify your listing which will take approximately 4 weeks.