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‘Google My Business’ is a new tool of Google. When you verify your business information on Google My Business, any update you make to your business, like contact information or opening hours, shows up on Google Maps and other Google properties. Before you can verity your business on Google My Business, you need to make sure that you have a postal address for your location. Then you need to follow the following steps:
#1 Add your business
First, you need to create a local Google+ page. Go to the Google My Business site. Search for your business using name or address. If you don’t find your business there, then click on the option ‘No, these are not my businesses’. You will then be asked to enter some details about your company. Then click on ‘submit’.
#2 Verification of your business
The verification process confirms that the information you’ve submitted about your company are correct. There are a number of methods of verification:
i. Verification by postcard: Google will send you a postcard with a verification code to your business address. If it reaches you and you confirm the verification code, then your website will be verified. When you click the ‘Verify now’ option, a postcard will be created on screen, you can enter your address and it will be sent to you.
ii. Verification by phone: This option is not suitable for all businesses. Before proceeding with the verification process, you need to make sure that your business can use phone as a way of verification.
iii. Instant verification: If your business is already verified through Webmaster Tool, then you can use the instant verification option.
iv. Bulk verification: If you have more than 10 locations of the same business, then you can use this option.
#3 Reviewing information
After being verified, you need to review your information and make any changes if needed.
# 4 Finalizing
Then click on ‘finished editing’.
This is how you verify your business information on Google My Business.
A research shows that the number of people reading blogs in the US is 140 million. Another research findings show that 31.1% customers read authoritative blogs before making their purchase decision. These statistics show how important blog is for your business. Here are some benefits of blogging for your business:
#1 It is cheap
Getting customers using direct mail, telemarketing, trade shows and pay-per-click advertising (PPC) costs about $373. The lead cost is almost half if it is generated using blogs.
#2 Increases website traffic
Blogging consistently can increase the traffic to your business website and so your business will get more exposure. Your potential customers would much rather read about interesting facts or how to guides, rather than your service sales page. So if you use your blog effectively you can use it to your advantage and promote your business.
#3 Increased sales
When you have lots of traffic to your website, it eventually increases sales. This is just something that we, digital marketers, are seeing with campaign after campaign. If you’re able targeted traffic to one of your online properties, you’ll get more sales.
#4 Builds brand awareness
Blogging is an inexpensive way of getting people to notice your brand. When a company blog is created, it provides value to other websites or businesses in the same industry. You will soon have links from other websites and your content will be shared on social media. So, your business will have more brand exposure.
#5 Educate visitors
Using blog you can educate the visitors and customers. The content of your blog will create interest in your product and business. These way customers are able to learn about the different products the company offers and how these products and services will benefit you.
Many business owners now have blogs. But majority of them remains inactive. It is important to update your blog regularly, else you won’t get the full essence of it. It is often difficult to maintain blog because of lack of good writers or topics.
Blogging needs careful planning and time, but it is a very effective online marketing tool to get audience and increase your brand awareness. Here’s a great infographic showing you how blogging can lead to more revenue in your business.
Research shows that 90% of the businesses are on social media. None of these companies could ignore the strength of social media. It will be difficult for the rest 10% to ignore it further also. Here are the reasons why:
#1 Presence of customers
Most of your customers are there. There are more than 1.44 billion active monthly users on Facebook. People are also on other social sites like Twitter and LinkedIn. As the customers are there, social media is the place where you will be able to approach them with your products and services.
#2 Increase in exposure
Your business will get more exposure with social media. Thus, brand awareness increases. Statistics show that 85% of companies had more exposure by being on social networks.
#3 Purchase decisions most often involve social element
When people decide what to buy, they use social media for information. People now spend 22% of their total time in social sites. So, if you are not there, you are missing a lot!
#4 It is an integrated marketing channel
Online presence is a must for companies now. If you are doing digital marketing including SEO, but is not involved with social media, then your whole online marketing company might be wasted. You need to have an integrated approach.
If contents are published in two or three channels, then there is 24% increase in customer engagement; and if three or four channels are used the increase in engagement is 300%. Most importantly, Google and other search engines are using social media activity as part of their algorithm to rank pages. So, if you are not on social media, your page rank might be lower.
#5 Lots of opportunities
Social media is a very good platform for reaching new prospects, develop stronger relationship with the customers, making your brand visible and to show your expertise and knowledge. If you are not on social media, you are missing out all these.
Social media is not only important for the reasons mentioned above, but also for the fact that it can create new business opportunities for you as well. So, make sure your business has social media presence.
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