What is Google My Business?
Google My Business is a free business profile on that helps you reach and engage with local customers across Google Search and Maps.
GMB listings show up above regular search results, right under the map. So there’s another chance for customers to find you if your website isn't on the first page. Need some help with SEO?
Why Do I Need a Google My Business Account?
There’s no reason you shouldn’t have an account with GMB. It’s free and super easy to set up.
Having a GMB account is how you get Google reviews. Customers are more likely to call a company that has good 5 star reviews over one that doesn’t.
If you have a GMB account, they offer you a free website. Yes it’s very basic and definitely not as awesome as our websites, but starting a business is expensive, and you really need an online presence.
GMB websites don't come with a free domain (ex. myinspectioncompany.com), but you can buy one of those from Godaddy for literally 2 dollars. Just find a coupon code from RetailMeNot.
Having a GMB account can also help boost your website's SEO. Here are some contributing factors that Google will rank your website from your Google my Business account:
- Keyword in business title
- Geo-tagged photos
How Do I Set Up a Google My Business Account?
You can create an account at business.google.com. Google makes the set-up process quick and easy, just follow the steps!
When setting up your account, it will ask you if you want to add a location customers can visit. Only say yes if you have a physical office that is staffed during business hours.
If you don't, say no and it will ask for the area you service. Just type in the town you live in. You can expand your service area later.
Note: I've found that Google will suspend your account if you pick too large of a service area. For example, you're a home inspector in Denver but your service area includes all of Colorado. If you type in "Colorado" because you want your listing to show up all across the state. This raises a red flag to Google and they suspend your account. Don't do it.
Another note: Google requires a physical address for verification. P.O. Boxes and UPS Stores will get your account suspended.
What do I do After Setting Up My GMB Account?
After setting up your account you’ll get a postcard from Google with an activation code on it in about a week. Once you get it, log into your GMB account and enter the validation code.
It takes about 3 days after validating your account for it to go live. You won't be notified of this, you just have to check back.
Once your account is live, make sure to add your review links to your automated follow-up emails.
Create a short name & URL for your business - Set up a short name URL, like “g.page/[yourcustomname]” so you can have a link that goes directly to your Business Profile.
How Do I Make My GMB Listing Show Up Higher?
Just like with organic SEO, Google won't tell you exactly how it ranks your GMB listing, but my research and experience have shown that doing these things will help improve your rankings:
- Submitting posts regularly (300 words is an ideal minimum)
- Enabling Q&A for customers
- Filling out your business description (750 words)
- Having more (good) reviews
- Setting up your Service Menu
- Add videos - up to 30s, up to 100 mb, 720px or higher. Stock videos will be removed.
- Setting up a booking button
- Enabling direct messages with customers (may not be available)
How Do I Grant Someone Access to My GMB Account?
Follow the instructions in this article.
Want more information on how to show up higher on Google?