First off you need to be interested in this platform because it’s free. That right there should peak your interest, amiright?
Second you need to have this listing claimed and tied to your website because of the huge Search Engine Optimization (SEO) benefits it brings to the table.
The problem that I run across most with local sites is that the business owner or webmaster linked to a map on Google that is NOT the business page. Rather, it is a map that was created by a user with a pin that locates the destination.
Don’t do this.
Link to your places page. And, if you have a designated contact page on your site link your Google places page to the contact page.
Get Linked To Start The Brew
To show you what you should be doing and how to do it I am going to use my favorite coffee shop as an example.
If I Google “coffee shop Fresno” (my hometown) a list of businesses come up. On that list is my favorite shop Cafe Corazon.
Now you can see that the local places page show up for them.
This is good.
If I click the pinkish icon next to the listing I am directed to a page that isolates to just Cafe Corazon.
This is where you are going to find your link that you can use to link to your places page from your website.
Or you can click on the more info and that will send you to the new Google Plus page for local businesses.
And this is where the true benefits of this program kick in. You now have the ability to customize your brand page and it is a lot easier for a user to write a review.
All you have to do is copy the link at the top of this page to link to this option.
Don’t Add Creamer Or Bad Links
Let’s say you Google “coffee shop fresno” and Google in it’s not so infinite wisdom decides to list the websites indexed for this term and not local places of this business and you happen to click on it and see on the homepage that there is a map like icon.
Now if we click on this icon it takes us to a map that is NOT the Google listing for this page.
You might be thinking “big deal” but it is a big deal…actually it’s HUGE.
There is zero branding going on, there are zero reviews displayed, contact info is missing, and the ability for a user to write a review is gone and the most important item on this list is that Google isn’t giving your website and place page SEO juice for linking to them.
Pretty big deal, isn’t it?
Coming Down, Stay Focused
Here are the key takeaways for today:
- Claim you local Google Places page
- Customize you Google Plus (Google Place) page with all the important data.
- Link your website to your Google Plus Local page or Google Places listing (Google is still working out the kinks on this).
- Link to your contact page from your Google Plus Local page, if you have a website that has a dedicated contact page.
Do you have any suggestions?
Let us know in the comments below!
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