Did you know that you can claim your business on Google Maps, and promote your business for free? Many of these features associated with other sites such as Yelp are now included in Google My Business. Since Google My Business is highly integrated with Google Maps, getting your Google Business Page is necessary in getting listed on Google Maps.
The first step is to check whether your business is already listed on Google Maps. Simply go to the Google Maps website and search for your business. If it comes up, click on its place-mark or listing in the left panel. In the pop-up that appears, you’ll see an option to “Edit” the business details (it might be hidden behind a “More” link). Click it.
If the business is unclaimed, anyone can edit the details. Think of it like Wikipedia. Since you’re planning on curating your presence on Google Maps, click the “Claim your business” link. You’ll be prompted with three options: “Edit my business information,” “Suspend this listing,” or “This isn’t my listing.” Suspending the listing will remove your business from Google Maps. Choosing “This isn’t my listing” will start the process for adding a completely new listing for your business. “Edit my business information” will claim the current listing.
If your company doesn’t already appear on the map, go to the Google My Business home page and click “Add a new business.” You can manage up to 100 listings on your account.
This is the most important part — and the easiest! You’ll want to start with name, address, phone number, website, hours of operation and which payment options you accept. Then you can upload photos directly or videos through YouTube.
It’s also important to choose categories to describe your business, as they’ll help people find you with keyword searches. You can create your own fields under “Additional details” if you want. You can even specify your delivery range if delivery is a service that you offer.
You can give Google Maps users coupons as an incentive to actually stop by your business. You can put whatever you want on the coupon, and Google provides the tools to format and distribute it.
To create one, log in to Google Places and click on the “Coupon” tab. The creation tools are easy to use and self-explanatory for the most part. Just save your coupon to make it appear on Google’s website. Would-be customers can print it off and bring it when they visit.
It’s also possible to make your business stand out from the crowd on Google Maps using advertising. You can either use Google’s AdWords program or a relatively new tool called “Tags.” The latter makes your business stand out on the map by marking it with a very noticeable yellow tag.