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By | 30/11/2022

Optimize your GMB listing – with live example from a photographer

And then, you want to know how to
claim your Google My Business list for your photography concern? Awesome! In this guide, I’ll take you lot through the basics of what GMB is and why you should use information technology. I’ll also have y’all through
step-past-stride how to claim your business organization
on GMB
using a real world example from a fellow photographer.

Equally business owners with real-world businesses to run and customers to serve, optimizing our spider web presence often gets pushed to the lesser of the pile. But the truth is, your future clients are right there on Google and if you’re non in front of their eyeballs, someone else will be.

Though our online listings seem similar a tiny part of what nosotros exercise, we need to remember


his is the outset impression of your business to hundreds or even thousands of potential new customers
. And so, you lot want to not but claim your GMB list, but optimize it and so that it converts.

It’s how your business will be judged by local searchers!

The good news is it’s really simple and easy to get gear up. And so, allow’s learn a piddling more and so nosotros’ll dive in.

Prefer to picket video than read a blog postal service? Check out my tutorial in video format, below:

What is Google My Business?

Google My Concern (or GMB as information technology’due south known) is a listing you lot create that allows Google to know that your concern exists!
From Google:

Your complimentary Business organisation Profile lets you easily connect with customers across Google Search and Maps.

According to Google, when you get a GMB listing, you’ll be eligible to appear on Google Search and Maps. Though that’s not a guarantee, information technology ways that

when someone nearby types in a search term that matches your business description, you may appear in the results

With your Google My Business account, you lot can come across and connect with your customers, postal service updates to your Business Profile, and see how customers are interacting with your business on Google.

Here’due south an example of what a Google My Business organisation listing looks like:

Example showing a well-optimized Google My Business listing
A restaurant’southward well-optimized Google My Business (GMB) listing

By at present, we all know how important it is to keep up-to-appointment with these features so we don’t get left behind. Today’s consumers are used to making quick decisions using the information at their fingertips. They can easily tell a listing that looks appealing and has some thought put into information technology, from ane that’s forgotten almost and a petty sketchy-looking.

Who is eligible for Google My Business?

Google My Business organisation isonly for local businesses that do face to face business organization with their customers. Examples include:

  • Restaurants
  • Establish nurseries
  • Bakeries
  • Plumbers
  • Grocery stores
  • Car repair shops
  • Colleges
  • Haulage companies
  • Pet groomers
  • Hymeneals planners
  • Confined
  • HVAC repair companies

… The list goes on. Though this tutorial will be useful for any kind of eligible business, my expertise is in photography businesses, so information technology’s near targeted towards the unique factors that go into these types of businesses.

You’ll notice that

service-based business concern are eligible for GMB, even if they work out of their home and have no storefront
. In our example, nosotros’ll be using a portrait photographer who goes to locations of her clients’ choosing within a certain radius.

 Brands, organizations, artists, and other online-only businesses are Not eligible forGoogle My Business organisation listings.

You can opt to

hide your address

(which will in 95% of cases be your domicile address). As we go through this existent example, I’ll show you the option to

testify your service surface area rather than a specific address

Official guidelines from GMB land that if you lot are a service area business (which photographers mostly are, considering who can actually afford a dedicated studio these days? Virtually of us get out to visit our clients where they’re at), y’all should Non display your address. A service expanse business organization in one that visits or delivers to clients directly and does not service clients at that accost.

If you do not serve customers at the address you used to verify your GMB listing, brand certain you choose service areas.

Can you utilize a PO Box for Google My Business?

No, it is against the GMB terms of service to employ any kind of mailbox, PO box or virtual space. Coworking spaces are likewise non a good fashion around GMB’s restrictions every bit in that location are rules against them specifically.

1 good workaround is to change the address to your home address and so set up your GMB to a service area business and so your home accost is not made public. You can then enter upwardly to 20 service areas, within about ii hours’ driving of the accost.

If you opt to show your accost, it must be an actual address that customers can visit, not a home address, virtual space, PO box or annihilation that isn’t a storefront with appropriate signage.

In that location’s ever someone out in that location who claims they can use some weird technique to featherbed what’s immune in the official GMB rules regarding service area businesses, but ultimately information technology’south likely this would be discovered and injure your listing in the long run.

Listings have gotten taken downwards for less!

Challenge your business concern on GMB – footstep-by-pace

Thanks to beau photographer Cara Jacobson Photography for letting me use her as my examination! As we go through, you lot’ll run into exactly what you need to do to gear up your ain Google My Business listing. This may you if you’re unsure whether a GMB listing is for y’all, or want to get the scoop on what’s involved before signing upwardly!

Step 1 – Check to see if your GMB listing already exists

This stride is not so obvious, but it is important! Anyone tin prepare a GMB listing. Maybe it was set already by a previous owner or employee of your business. It could even have been ready upwards past a customer or local resident.
So, let’s Google the business name and see.

how to check and see if you already have a Google My Business set up. It may have been set up by a previous owner, employee or even by a customer or local resident.
Checking to see whether the business concern already has a Google My Concern list

Nope, Cara Jacobson Photography doesn’t have a GMB listing.

But with this guide, I’ll show you how to become from this ☝️ to this 👇 when searching your business name.

before and after - now we have verified this small business, it appears on google instantly when searching the name of that company.

Pace 2 – Sign in to organisation/ and log in

You’ll desire to use the same Gmail accost that y’all use for your website’s Google Analytics and Google Search Console. Once yous log in, this is what you lot’ll see:

screenshot from Google My Business - when setting up you'll see 'Find and Manage your Business' - you'll need to select 'Add your Business To Google', highlighted in red.
Cull ‘Add your business organization to Google’

Footstep 3 – Add your business to Google

As we know already that the business organization name isn’t already known by Google, I’ll choose ‘Add your business to Google’ at the bottom of the screen.

The next screen will ask yous ‘What is the name of your business organization?’ Brand sure you enter this correctly, and hit ‘Next’.

Set up screen from Google My Business - the prompt asks you 'what's the name of your business'. Enter the Business Name and click 'Next'.
Enter your business name and hitting ‘Adjacent’.

Footstep iv – Choose your business category

And then, the next screen will ask you lot for your business concern category. Yous’ll desire this to be accurate and match what people are searching. Google will give you a predetermined list that you cull from. Don’t worry if it’s not an exact friction match, you’ll be able to add together more than categories, or even change it, later.

Setting up your GMB listing - choosing the correct category for your business. In this example, the category is Photographer
Starting time typing and Google volition suggest categories for you to choose from

Every bit you can see to a higher place, at that place is a listing of relevant categories that come up as I start to type in ‘Lensman’. Please, don’t ask me why ‘Hot dog restaurant’ shows upward, must be a Google glitch 😉

Pace 5 – Select whether to add together a physical location

OK, next upwardly you’ll be asked ‘Do you want to add a location customers tin visit, like a store or office’?

'Do you want to add a location customers can visit, like a store or office'? question screenshot from Google My Business listing setting up a photographers' profile
Yous’ll be asked whether yous desire to add a location customers tin can visit

In Cara’s case, we’ll want to say ‘No’. This is considering customers do non come to her – she goes to wherever they would like their photo-shoot to take place. If you have a store, repair shop, studio, office space and you’d like to accept this visible on the profile, so of course hit ‘Yes’.

Stride vi – Add where yous serve your customers

Next up, the question appears, ‘Where practise you serve your customers? (optional)’. Every bit you’re running a local concern, I would advise definitely taking reward of this feature! You tin can add several if you’d similar.

Adding the relevant service areas under ''Where do you serve your customers? (optional)'' of your Google My business listing. This listing deals with a local service provider in the Dallas TX area
Adding in a few cities within a reasonable range of the business possessor’s location

Step 7 – Enter your phone number and website

OK, about washed! You’ll add in your phone number (if y’all would like that to announced). This will be public. Some businesses such equally photographers would rather not accept their cell phone number appearing. They prefer to use calendar scheduling when it comes time to arrange a conversation. Nosotros’ll be adding that in later.

Adding in info to set up Google My Business listing - 'What details do you want to show to customers?' You then enter your phone number and website
Choose the contact details you’d like to appear – phone number and website

For the vast majority of businesses, you will Non desire the ‘free website’. You likely already have one! If you don’t, take the fourth dimension to discover out what suits your business’ needs earlier signing up.

Step 8 – Hit ‘Stop’

Finish and manage this listing - the final screen from a small business' Google My Business set up process - find out how to claim, set up and optimize your GMB listing to attract local customers
Terminate and manage the list

On the terminal screen, right before you hit ‘Finish’, y’all’ll get a preview of what yous tin can how do! You tin can:

  • Promote your business with photos and posts
  • Runway business analytics to understand your customers
  • Respond to customer reviews

Pace 9 – Enter your mailing accost and await postcard

You may have hit ‘End’ just there is one last step! Google volition send y’all a postcard for verification purposes. You lot’ll demand to enter your mailing address where you’ll receive this postcard.

final screen of the set-up process for Google My Business - you'll need to enter your mailing address to verify your business and finish the GMB listing
Enter your mailing accost – this is where the verification postcard will exist sent!

This is a vital last step and your listing will not exist live without it. Then, wait a few days and keep an eye on your postal service! You lot tin also choose to ‘verify later on’, in case y’all can’t get to the address on time. Currently yous can see it says ‘may have up to 5 days to go far’. So hitting that ‘Mail’ push button, kick back and relax for five days (yeah, correct).

The final step of verifying your business with google for your GMB listing is the postcard which will be sent out to the mailing address. It takes 5 days to arrive.
Toot, toot! The postcard is now on its fashion, it looks like it’ll take 5 days to reach the business owner

Footstep x – Make full out your business data while you wait

While waiting for your GMB listing verification postcard to arrive, you can spend some time working on your profile, adding relevant information and keyword-rich text that will help you get found in local search
Get started with your Google My Business listing while you want for the postcard for verification

Just kidding about the putting-your-anxiety-up part. Now what yous’ll desire to do is fill out your profile! This role is pretty self-explanatory. Have a click around and run into what y’all tin can add! I have a few pointers below related to specific sections within the customization procedure.

Tips and tricks for optimizing your GMB profile

You lot should add together:

  • Opening hours
    (or you can also add 24 hours, if customers do not visit the location e.yard. a abode-run concern which has no gear up hours that your customers need to know)
  • Scheduling link
    if you don’t want your jail cell phone number appearing, utilize a free or paid scheduling service. (examples exclude Calendly, Acuity, Putter, 10to8, Picktime…)
  • Your logo: This should be in square format. If your logo file is rectangular, y’all’ll need to use some elementary software to add your logo to a square canvas, otherwise it may exist partially cropped out, or have a groundwork.
  • Photos
    (including a horizontal comprehend photo): Whatever your type of concern, add together relevant photos! The categories are:
    Overview, video, at work, team
    identity. The idea is to personalize your make here. Your photos don’t have to exist professional, but make sure they are well-lit and composed. Avoid stock photography, as this looks fake rather than evoking trust.

Here’south a dandy tip for adding photos to your GMB listing. You’ll want to geo-tag them (embedding location data in the files exif). This is but one pocket-sized way of making everything in your listing scream ‘LOCAL’. To practice this, become to GeoImgr and follow the unproblematic instructions there.

  • Services
    products: details of what y’all sell.
    Note: if you don’t come across the correct categories appearing under ‘services’, yous can simply add together your own!
    In the screenshot below, you’ll see the categories related to Cara’south field are limited, so I added ones that are in line with what she offers, begetting in listen besides what her target market place is searching!
You tin can create new categories for your service offerings if those auto-suggested by Google aren’t quite right.

Note: production photos should be added to the ‘products’ section, non the ‘photos’ section. As well: Customers cannot make purchase inside GMB. You can provide a link to the product on your website (for case as a mail) and they can buy it from in that location.

  • Business description: Proceed information technology short and sweet (limit is just 750 characters). Depict what your business concern is all almost! Inject the brand’s personality, as this is what volition resonate with your target market place. However, keep it professional person and non overly familiar. Include keywords in a natural manner.
Screenshot from Google My Business - how to set up and optimize your GMB listing for success featuring tips and tricks to get the most out of your listing so you get found in local search! |
Write a clarification that explains what you exercise and why your audition should care!

At this point, we’re merely trying to get our profile looking every bit complete as possible. Of course, it doesn’t have to be perfect. You can tweak pretty much everything, any time y’all want.

That’s about all I can practise while I wait for the postcard to go far in the mail. Catch you on the flipside! 👋 showing you how to set up and get the most out of your GMB listing for success in your local area - Zoe waiting for the verification postcard to arrive
Take a walk – it’south going to be a long wait 😣

Verifying your business concern on Google My Business organization (when you lot’re received your postcard!)

OK! The postcard has at present arrived and we’re set up to
verify the business with Google. This is what yous should look to receive in the mail within 5 business organization days:

A scan of the actual envelope Google My Business (GMB) verification team will send you. Keep an eye out for this in the mail - it is received within 5 days.
Scan of the postcard you lot’ll receive from GMB

Now log into your GMB listing. On the get-go screen when you visit Google Business, yous’ll see where you need to enter the verification lawmaking (below):

Once you lot’ve entered the number, nosotros tin can commencement adding more to the list. Here are a few things I did or that you can do

  • Add a ‘profile brusque name’
  • Add special hours
  • Input your telephone number
  • Add together your opening date
  • Share your profile on social media
  • Share by email to customers asking for a review using ‘share review class’.
  • Plough on messaging
  • Add a video (likewise as photos showcasing overview, at work, team and identity)
  • Add the ability to volume through Google
  • Showcase your products
  • Create toll sheets for your services
  • Get familiar with your ‘Insights’ which is your dedicated GMB analytics
  • Create an advertising
  • Create a post (examples below)
Example posts from Google My Business posts for small business owners - photography business

Now you’re all ready on Google My Business! You’ll receive an email every month that’ll prove you how many people viewed your business and how many clicks went to your website. You’ll as well find the top search queries people used to notice you! This is what it looks like (screenshot from my ain GMB listing!)

email from Google every month showing how many views and search terms and Google My Business listing receives
Screenshot showing monthly e-mail from Google with views, search terms and click data

A word of warning nigh a GMB scam that you should be aware of

The solar day before I published this article, I began receiving scam emails attempting to proceeds ownership of my Google My Business account. I am non entirely sure how the scam works, but I have written a detailed article well-nigh what I know.

Make certain y’all protect yourself by checking out the article, which I will add together to every bit fourth dimension goes by.

Unfortunately, fifty-fifty GMB is not allowed to being targeted by scammers. Unscrupulous people will e’er endeavour to find a way to profit from YOUR hard work and the concern you’ve built.

Exist very sure y’all know who you are giving access to. Never give access of your Google My Business account to anyone you do non know or trust – even if they send a legitimate-looking email, hope you free services to help you, or claim to be from Google.

A quick chip of GMB news

It’s currently
news (reported here in Search Engine Periodical) merely it looks like a paid option for GMB volition soon be bachelor.
Known as Google Guarantee, it seems that for $50/month, business owners volition be able to pay for a visibility boost along with a green badge. This is all in a bid to increment user trust and fight spam, which has long been a thorn in GMB’s side.

It’due south not available to all local businesses at the minute (perhaps just those already in Local Services), but worth keeping an eye on if you lot are eager to test out all that Google My Concern has to offer.

My next installment in my Google My Business series will delve a niggling deeper into the more advanced stuff, now you’re all set up, including how to get those sugariness reviews, posting tips, analytics and more. ‘Til then – happy GMB adventures!

Want to use fifty-fifty more Google features to be found for complimentary by your target market? Cheque out Google Discover!

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How to claim and set up your Google My Business! So, you want to know how to claim your Google My Business listing for your small, local business? Awesome! In this guide, I’ll take you through the basics of what GMB is and why you should use it. I’ll show you step-by-step how to claim your business on GMB using a real world example setting up a photography business owner's GMB. The advantages are obvious, once you know the power of Google My Business! #seo #localseo |
How to claim and prepare your Google My Business – step-by-pace guide |

Claiming your local business in Google My Business - It's simple with my easy-to-understand guide! I will explain the benefits of GMB such as appearing on Maps and Search, and will also guide you through set-up in detail, with a REAL service business I set up + optimize from scratch. With 92% of searchers never leaving the first page of Google, it pays to use ALL Google's local-friendly features and get the best of out your free Google My Business (GMB) listing. #seo #localseo |
Claiming your small concern on Google My Business concern – step-by-step GMB guide |

Zoe Larkin

I’m Zoe, a wedding photographer based in San Francisco! My style is candid, capturing authentic moments for my couples all over the Bay Surface area and Northern California. Creating content is my passion! Follow along the blog and Insta!


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Originally posted 2022-02-13 00:00:01.