As a titan that dominates the world of search, Google is also well-known among businesses for its useful Google Business Profile, formerly known as Google My Business (GMB).
Although many brands big and small are leveraging this powerful marketing tool, there are still some that have yet to create or claim their business listing.
Whether it’s due to not knowing how it works or just not fully grasping how to properly optimize their business for maximum exposure and visibility, businesses are missing out on one of the most effective marketing opportunities available today.
If you’re a business owner looking to take your digital presence to the next level, then it’s time for you optimize and actively manage your Google Business Profile.
With this quick guide, we’ll answer all of the most common questions business owners have about Google My Business, so you can start taking advantage of everything this powerful tool has to offer.
Google Business Profile (GBP)
Google Business Profile (GBP) is a free directory listing tool offered by Google that allows businesses to create and manage their online presence across Google’s platforms, including search results, maps, and more.
- What Does Google Business Profile Do?
Using Google Business Profile, businesses can easily build their online presence by adding information about their products or services, uploading images and videos, creating post updates, responding to reviews from customers, optimizing their website for visibility in search engines, and much more.
- Why did Google Business Profile Change It’s Name?
Google Business Profile used to be called “Google My Business”. The platform was rebranded to better reflect the fact that your profile is what appears on Google when people search for your business.
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GBP Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
We get it, Google Business Profile has a lot going on. There’s a lot to learn before you dive right in. Let’s take it a step at a time by answering some frequently asked questions.
What’s a Business Profile?
A Google Business Profile is a free directory that allows you to choose how you appear on Google Search and Maps.
On your profile, you can connect with customers, post updates and information about your products and services, accept online orders directly through your profile, and more — all for free.
How do I manage my Google Business Profile after I sign up?
After you sign up for a Google Business Profile, you can manage your profile directly from Google Search or Maps.
To do this, simply search for “my business” or enter your business name. You can also go to your Google Business Profile login to access this.
Once you’re signed in, you’ll be able to edit your Business Profile and add information like your business hours, description, contact information, and photos.
Do I need to download the Google Business Profile app to create and manage my profile?
You don’t need to download the Google Business Profile app to create and manage your profile — you can do it directly from Google Search and Maps, or sign in on the Google Business Profile website. However, the app can be handy if you want to manage your profile on the go.
My business doesn’t have a storefront. Can I still have a Business Profile?
Yes, you can have a profile on Google Business Profile even if your business doesn’t have a physical storefront or address.
This is true whether you are a service-area business that visits customers at their locations, or a hybrid business that serves customers both at your location and directly at their own homes or businesses.
Whether you are a local business that relies on in-person visits with customers to get the job done, or you are a service provider who travels directly to your customers’ locations, having a Google Business Profile is an important tool for connecting with potential customers and building your brand.
Should I create a Google Business Profile if I already have a website?
Yes. If you already have a website for your business, having a free Business Profile on Google can be a great way to add more visibility and boost your online presence.
These profiles provide additional information about your business that helps potential customers find you and learn more about what you offer. They also allow you to connect directly with existing customers by sharing updates and special offers through your profile.
How do I verify my business?
There are a few different ways you can verify your business with Google. The most common methods are via phone, SMS, or postcard.
To verify your business by phone, Google will call the number listed for your business and give you a verification code to enter online. To verify by SMS, you’ll receive a text message to your business phone with a verification code to enter online.
Lastly, to verify via postcard, Google will send a physical postcard with a verification code to the address listed for your business.
Note, this is different than verifying your Google Local Service Ads (LSA) account. For this, you will need to go through a more intensive assessment of your business here.
Why do I need to verify my business?
Verifying your business allows us to confirm that you are the rightful owner, giving you the authority and permission to manage your business profile.
Security is important, and you want to make sure that only you or your authorized managers are making updates to your profile.
Verification is an important step in maintaining the integrity of your Google Business listings and ensuring that they are accurately represented.
I have a physical storefront but I also offer online services. How do I show this on my profile?
If you offer both in-person and online services, you can show this on your Google Business Profile using attributes.
Google Business Profile offers a variety of attributes that businesses can use to indicate what they offer. To add or edit attributes for your business, sign in to your Google Business Profile account and click on the “Info” tab.
Can I respond to customer reviews on my Google Business Profile?
Yes, you can respond to customer reviews on your Business Profile. When you reply to a review, your response will appear below your customer’s review on Google Search and Maps, where it will be labeled as a “Response from the owner”.
Can I set hours on my profile for specific services?
Yes. This is useful if your business provides different services at different times (e.g. senior hours, delivery, takeout). To do this, go to your profile and select the “More hours” option.
How do I add and edit my business attributes to show the services I offer?
Adding and editing business attributes is an important part of letting customers know the services you offer, such as delivery or pickup.
To do this, you can use attributes like “HVAC”, “Plumbing”, or “Remodeling”. Additionally, you may want to let customers know about any safety precautions your business has implemented, such as “Mask required” or “Staff gets temperature checks”.
To add or edit your business attributes, you will first need to log in to your account on the business portal. From there, you can click on the “Attributes” tab and select the type of attribute that you want to add or edit.
How do I update my menu?
If you want to update your menu, sign-in to your Google Business Profile and click on the “Menu” link on the left side of the screen.
Here, you can edit or add new items to your menu, making changes based on any recent changes — whether it’s due to seasonal changes or special promotions in your offerings that you may want to highlight to attract customers.
Can I only update my Business Profile using Google My Business?
No. Now, you can update your Google Business Profile direct from both Google Search and Google Maps.
To start, simply sign in with the Google Account you used to verify your business. On Google Maps, tap on your profile picture that can be found in the top right corner of the mobile app. Select “Your Business Profile” and then from there, you’ll get access to these tools.
To update your Business Profile on Google Search, look up your business name or search “my business” and then you’ll be able to make any necessary changes.
What’s the difference between a Business Profile and Google Places for Business, Google Business Profile, Google Listings, or Google+ Business Pages?
Google Places for Business was a previous version of this product that is no longer available. If you had a Google Places for Business, Google Listings, or a Google+ account, it has now been replaced by Google Business Profile.
If you have any of these old icons or links on your current website, be sure to update them today.
Does Google have featured partners that help manage Business Profiles?
Yes. Google has partnered with several businesses to help manage and optimize Business Profiles on our platform. These partners are part of our Featured Partners Program, which highlights the valuable services they provide to the broader Google Business Profile community.
Whether you need help creating and optimizing your profile, managing customer reviews, or driving more traffic to your website, there is a Google Partner that can help you achieve your business goals.
What other tools does Google have to help small business owners grow?
Google offers a variety of tools to help you get ahead, including My Google Reviews, the Google Speed Test, and Google Ads.
Whether you’re looking for tailored advice or improved workflow, Google Business Profiles’ tools are designed to give your business the boost it needs to thrive.
How else can I reach more customers?
There are several ways to reach more customers, and using Google Ads is one of them. Google Ads can be extremely effective in driving people to your business, no matter what you’re selling.
You can also reach customers through the reviews Google My Business collects. Use your reviews as a way to show potential customers what your business is all about and what others think of your products or services.
Better yet, reply to your reviews, positive and negative to show that you’re engaged with your customers and are always looking to improve your business.
Get the Internet “Wizdom” You Need to Succeed
If you’re feeling a little lost in the digital age, don’t worry. You’re not alone.
Many business owners are still trying to find their footing in this new online world. But it’s important to remember that as technology evolves, so do your customers. They are no longer bound by geographical borders and they expect businesses to be available to them when and where they want them.
That’s why platforms like Google Business Profile have become so popular; they give consumers the ability to connect with businesses on their own terms. And as a business owner, it’s up to you to make sure your website and all of your online profiles are updated and accurate.
With enough internet “wizdom”, an influential brand, and your commitment to providing an outstanding customer experience, you’re business will be unstoppable.
However, if you need some extra guidance, look no further than Wizard of Ads™.
We can help get your business on the right track with our suite of digital marketing services that are designed specifically for businesses like yours.
Book a call with us today to make marketing magic!