So how do I set up my Google Places listing?
In my last blog post I promised to run through the creation of your Google places listing in a simple and informative way that will allow you to fill in all the important fields and get a good result for the search engine ranking the Google places.
Before I do that a couple of minor points that will be useful during this process.
- If you don’t already have one get yourself a Google mail account and use this account information, the username and password, to log into Google places. If you do have a Google mail account I suggest you use this to create your Google places listing. To get a Google mail account go here. You might want to setup a Google account specifically for your business, for example firstname.lastname@example.org to save any conflict between your personal Gmail account and your business listing in the future.
- Do not use a PO Box or a drop box address or Google is likely to delete your listing.
- For verification I recommend using the telephone but please be aware that as soon as you press the submit button Google will automatically phone you back on the number you’ve provided within a few seconds. You will need to have a pen and paper handy before you press that button as they will give you an automated five digit pin number and if you have a memory like mine will definitely need to write that down.
- When you are writing this listing please bear in mind that Places is a search engine optimised list so a good and accurate description covering everything that you do is extremely important. Treat this listing as a landing page on your web site.
- The last area you are asked to complete in your Google places is a list of additional items, many people leave this blank, don’t. You can put as many additional things here that are relevant to your business. For example if you’re an IT support company and your Microsoft certified but you haven’t mentioned that in your description then this is an excellent area to add that kind of information. Please make full use of this bear in mind Google will take these entries into consideration when ranking your Google places listing for a search.
- Google places uses your web sites home page (assuming this is where you are linking to) title tag so please ensure this represents your search criteria.
Although we’ve only covered Google places here you should also add your company listings to Yahoo local and Bing local.
Bing local is a simple 118 listing and you will get verification telephone call at some point over the next two weeks from 118 just confirming that you are the company concerned. To add your company to Bing local please go here.
Yahoo local is run by Infoserve. Their listing page where you add your information can be found here. Infoserve will call you within 10 days or so to verify your listing. Yahoo local also offer paid services similar to yell.com starting at around £325 per area for your business category. If you’re interested in this that I’m sure they are open to discussion on both pricing and area.
One last point, don’t forget to come back and check your Google places listing on a regular basis, as it’s just a webpage in a local search engine. You should also login to your Google places account as it provides excellent analytics to tell you how many people have viewed your advertisement and how many people have click through to your website. You can also go into your settings and select to receive periodic email reports on your places listing performance.