Google My business? What is it?
Google My Businesss is a service that Google proposes in order to register a company or a business in Google Maps, the famous online map service that millions of people use every day on the Internet. It is a completely free geolocation tool that allows promoting your business online in a very efficient way. So to sum up, Google My Business allows the company to appear in a more relevant and outstanding way in Internet searches in Google Maps and in Google search results page.
|Locations of workshops in Madrid on Google Maps|
Is it useful for the workshop business?
Knowing that more than 80% of the users who surf the Internet do so in order to find a local business or a company, Google My business can definitely be very useful for a workshop because that will allow the workshop to position itself on the Internet in a quick and relevant way facing thousands of potential customers.
On one hand, to appear in a prominent place in the Google or Google Maps results pages allows giving a lot of visibility to your business and optimally promote it, which can logically allow attracting new customers. On the other hand, since the introduction and massive use of Smartphone (telephones that allow surfing on the Internet, such as: Iphone, Samsung Galaxy, etc.) with applications that allow the users to locate geologically businesses and offers, attracting customers through geolocation applications like Google maps is becoming even more effective.
Google My Business offers its users an analysis tool (Insights) that allows obtaining relevant information about the workshops customers: where they come from, what keywords they use when searching online, how many printouts of your profile are made on the Internet. Moreover, you have the opportunity to send out promotions and special offers using your Google My Business profile (for instance, winter maintenance campaign, official inspection, 4x3 shock absorbers, etc.).
Internet users have the possibility to leave reviews and comments in the empty text fields and the workshop can answer them from its Google My Business account. It is a direct communication channel with your customers that allows you to obtain opinions, evaluation and recommendations in order to improve your business.
In brief, Google My Business can provide a competitive advantage to the workshops that want to distinguish and stand out from their competitors; especially in big cities where there are many active workshops.
How to register in Google My Business?
The first step for those of you who still do not have a gmail account is to create one. If you already have a Gmail account for a personal use, it is better to create another account for a professional use (the name of the account should contain the name of the company). Once you have created the gmail account, you can go to the Google My Business registration page by clicking on this link.
After that, you will need to enter the name of your company in the field at the top left corner to check if Google has already registered you on its map. Once you have entered the name of your company in the appropriate field, a list of companies and their addresses will appear. If none of those companies is your business, click on the box “No, these are not my businesses”
Then it will appear a form on the screen “Introduce your company information” where you will have to indicate the name of the company, select the country where your business is located, enter the full address and the telephone number of your company in the appropriate text field. Be careful with the telephone number! Introduce a valid number, as there is a possibility (although slight) that Google can call to check this number. After that you will have to choose your business category: you can put for example “Car repair workshop”. Once you have finished, click “SEND”.
Verification by Postcard
Then, a message “Verify by postcard” will appear on the screen. This means that Google has to verify your association with the business to be registered in order to authorize the registration. Google will send you a postcard with the verification CODE to the business address you provided in order to activate your business in Google My Business.
Before receiving the postcard, you can keep on filling your business information in Google My Business by clicking on “Continue and verify later” located in the box below “Verify by Postcard”.
The business profile will appear on the screen. All the information you fill in will appear publically. So it is very important that this information is correct and relevant for the final user. After indicating all basic information of the company in Contact Information (Name, address, telephone number, email, website) you will have to write the description of your business in “Your Business Description”. For this purpose, at the top of your profile, click on the link “Add>” located after the phrase “Missing Business Description”.
It is important to include the keywords or concepts that you think the users will use to find you on the Internet. It is important to talk about your services or products in this text field. Above all, don’t forget to include a link that can take you to our website.
For example, a description of a workshop might be: A workshop with over 50 years’ experience, located in the city of Dublin offers repair, diagnostic and maintenance car services: passenger cars, vans and crossovers. Visit our website URL: http://www.carworkshop-mpd.com/
Here you will have the opportunity to inform about the opening hours of your business.
You will also have the opportunity to include photos and pictures of your business by clicking on “Edit” in the Photos section. It is recommended to upload high quality photos. In the ideal case, include photos of your premises (e.g. a photo of the facade of the workshop, a photo inside the premises where machinery, equipment, lifts, etc. can be seen), as well as photos showing some of the services or products that your company offers (you can put photos of oil change, replacement of tyres, brake pads, shock absorbers, exhausts, batteries, etc.).
Once you have done everything mentioned above, a Google My Business Profile Preview will appear with all the provided information.
At the top of the profile you will see a bar “Complete your business information”. If you put the mouse on it, the following message will appear: “1 pending task”. At the top of the profile you will see a message in a yellow box that says “Your changes are not displayed unless you prove that you are the owner of the business”. Click “Verify now”.
Then the box “Verify Postcard” will appear on the screen again. There you can see the postcode of your company. Click on this box. By default, it will be sent to the address of your company. You will also have the possibility to add an optional contact name. After checking all the information, click “Send Postcard”.
Your postcard have been sent
The registration process is now complete and Google will inform you that you will receive in 2 to 3 weeks a postcard with a verification CODE to activate your business in Google My Business. Click “Continue”.
Postcard receipt and insertion of the verification CODE
From 2 to 3 weeks later, you will receive a postcard from Google with the verification CODE that you need in order to activate your Google My Business account. You must log into your Gmail account and enter to Google My Business page again by clicking on this link. Then at the top of your business profile will appear a button “Introduce CODE ”. Click on it and enter the CODE that Google sent you by postcard. Then click “Send”.
Finally, Google will confirm the CODE and it will validate the company data. Although your business profile will appear as “Active” in your dashboard, it may take 1 week to appear in Google Maps.
Congratulations! Your workshop is now registered in Google My Business