What Is a Google Account?
If you’re active online, chances are you already have a personal Google account and use it every day. You might leverage it for free, full-featured email through Gmail, for installing apps to an Android device via the Play store, or simply saving your search history across multiple devices to make the most of Google’s market-dominating search engine.
What you might not know, however, is that a single Google account is also a portal to a powerful suite of business and marketing tools. When a Google account is properly configured for business use, the tools you’ll have access to can help you build your brand, find your audience, and understand shifting markets. A Google account can even be conveniently used as a login for many other third-party websites and services, reducing your need for frustrating password management.
A single Google account gives you access to Google Analytics, YouTube, G+, Gmail, and free cloud storage through Google Drive, just to name a few. In the past, I have helped clients who needlessly created multiple Google accounts for use with multiple Google products, which makes their processes less efficient. This lack of centralization and cross-connection between platforms can make it difficult for clients to effectively manage their tasks, making the project of building a successful online business more stressful than it needs to be.
Gmail / Gmail for Business
Google Drive / Google Docs
Google Chrome Browser
Visit the Google Business Profile Gateway
Once you have your new email address, head to google.com/business and click ‘Manage now’ to get started: This field has an autocomplete feature to help determine if a listing already exists. If your business name pre-populates, this means that there’s a pre-existing listing. Instead of creating a duplicate, you’ll want to claim the listing that already exists.
3. Make Sure Your Business Listing is Online
A business listing can exist on its own, without anyone claiming it with a Google My Business account. The problem with this is that business owners have no control over the information that Google has provided until they claim the listing.
To find your business listing, just search the name of your business. If an address populates next to it, then you already have a business profile and can move onto step #4!
If Your Listing Isn’t Online
If an address doesn’t populate next to your business name, that means there likely isn’t a listing associated with it. To add a location, follow the following steps:
Sign back into Google My Business
Click Manage Locations
Select a location group
Click Add Location
Enter necessary business information
Follow prompts to create a new listing
The great part about this route is that once you add the location in Google My Business, you are the claimed owner of the listing and can bypass the claiming process.
4. Request to Claim Your Business Profile
Unfortunately, creating a Google My Business account does not automatically connect to your business listing. To connect your account to your business profile, you will have to claim your business listing.
5. Request from Search
Search for your business name and location on Google. On the right-hand side of the search results, you should see a panel with your business information (Business Listing). Within the listing, find the option labeled “Manage this listing” and select it.
After you select the option, you will be taken to a screen that includes a “Manage now” button. Click that and follow the prompts to claim your business.
6. Request from Maps
Go to google.com/maps and type in your business name. From there, you will click on your business profile and select the option “Claim this business.”
Once selected, a pop-up will appear that includes a “Manage now” button. Click that and follow the prompts to claim your business.
5. Verify Business Ownership
When you click the “Manage now” button mentioned in the previous step, you’ll be asked for information to prove that you are the owner of the business listing.
Depending on the business and if you’re signed in to Google My Business, you may be verified instantly and then will have access to your listing.
If you didn’t create the business profile, Google will provide you with a verification code to submit. This verification code can be sent via email, phone, or postal mail – depending on the business requirements, Google will provide the necessary option.
Once you receive the verification code, you’ll enter it into Google My Business, and then you’ll have full access to your Business Profile!
Take the Time to Verify Your Business
Google My Business has changed the way customers find and engage with your business. If you want to effectively reach your audience and attract new customers, optimizing your business listing for local search is a great first step.
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