Have you claimed your free listing on Google Places?
If you’re a retailer or professional who has a physical place of business where customers and clients can go, you qualify for a free Google Places listing. The reason you need a physical office or place of business is because Google Places is part of the Google Maps program and is tied towards your geographical address and location. If you work from home or you’re a consultant who meets at the client’s location, no problem. While every Google Places listing must have a mailing address, if you work from home or you are a mobile business you can specify a “service area” in the sign up process and choose to hide your physical address.
The advantages are enormous.
You’ve seen those little red push-pin tags when you do a search for a local business? Those are Google Places listings, which are coming up at the top of the search engine results, below the paid ads but above the other “organic” listings. And did I mention they were free?
HOW TO CLAIM YOUR GOOGLE PLACES LISTING
Go to www.google.com/places
You’ll need to login to Google or set up a Google account if you don’t have one already, and then “claim” your listing.
Chances are you already have an “unclaimed” Google Places listing floating around out there just waiting for you, the owner, to come by, verify that the site is indeed yours, and then update it accordingly.
Google verfies your ownership by calling you on the phone with a PIN number that you’ll paste into the site to confirm you’re really the owner, or, mail you a post card with the PIN. My suggestion is to set up the Google Places page from your place of business because the verification phone call with the PIN number will come within seconds of pressing the submit button and the process can be completed within minutes. When I set up my Google Places page for SamsonMedia I remember it startled me a bit how fast the phone rang with the recording on the other end reading the PIN, so be ready by being near your phone.
Once you have your Google Places listing you can actually list stores hours, upload images, logs and even videos!
This is one of those low hanging fruit SEO tactics that are a complete no-brainer. So if you haven’t set up your Google Places page for your own business, take a few minutes and do it today!
Check out the SamsonMedia Google Places page HERE.