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Here are answers to some commonly asked questions about Google My Business.
1. What’s the difference between a Google+ Profile and a Google+ Page?
Firstly, Google+ (or Google Plus) is a social network that builds off of your Google email account, otherwise known as Gmail. When you go to your Gmail, you can navigate to Google+ from the dashboard icon, where you are prompted to add people in your networks and add extra details to your Google+ Profile.
Your Google+ Profile is your personal profile, where you act as an individual sharing content and information with your followers on Google+. It’s very much like a personal Facebook profile.
A Google+ Page is very much like a Facebook Page and represents a company or organization. You can make changes to your Google+ Page through your Google My Business dashboard that lets you manage your business presence across Google, including Search and Maps. Information that you add and/or change in Google My Business will also be reflected in your online listing, which shows up when someone searches your business on Google.
2. What should I do when someone else has claimed my listing?
There might be the odd case that when you go to verify your Google My Business listing, a message indicating that “someone else has already verified this listing” appears. To reclaim your listing, you’ll need to request admin rights and submit a transfer of ownership request. Google will attempt to contact the person who claimed your listing to verify the transfer. If there is no response within 7 days, Google will un-verify the current owner and then send them a verification code to confirm their identity.
3. Could I set up a Google My Business listing as an individual practitioner?
The answer is yes. An individual practitioner is a public-facing professional, typically with his or her own customer base. Doctors, dentists, lawyers, financial planners, and insurance or real estate agents are all individual practitioners. However, if there are multiple practitioners at one location, it is recommended for the organization to create a listing for the location, separate from that of the practitioner. As well, it’s recommended that solo practitioners that belong to branded practitioners should share a listing with the organization.
4. Can I leave out my business address on Google as I am a home service company and don’t want people visiting my home?
You have the option to hide your business address by listing your business as a service area, instead, on Google. You can also choose to remove your service area entirely. To make these changes, go to Google My Business where you can update your location preference for your listing.
5. If I’m relocating to a new address, how to I update my listing?
If you’re moving to a new office, it’s likely that your new location has been occupied by a business before you. Find out who that is and make sure you mark their business listing as closed. As well, be sure to also mark your old listings as permanently closed. To edit your new information, visit your Google My Business listing and include accurate and up-to-date information such as phone number, address, and office hours.
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6. Since I already have a listing, should I also advertise with Google AdWords?
Google AdWords are pay-per-click ads in which advertisers are charged a certain amount whenever someone clicks on their ads after conducting a search. The benefits of Google AdWords are that it can help your business appear higher in search results, especially if there are a lot of competition for your keywords.
Deciding on advertising with Google AdWords depends on your industry and whether you will see a high return on ad spending. Types of industries that see lifetime value of a new client include dentists, doctors, educational programs, internet providers, utilities, etc. Other industries that see high margins on a single purchase include cars, weddings, home appliances, lawsuits, and repair jobs.