I have noticed with dismay that 9 out of 10 local Nigerian small businesses have no idea what Google maps means or how to get their businesses listed on google places for increase in publicity, leads and sales.
I have a few questions to ask you today.
Do you know what this is?
Well, you probably might have seen it somewhere before or not at all. That image above is a map of business locations in Nigeria. A pin is pointing to the exact location of a business listed on Google maps.
Do you know what this is?
The above image is a google local search and map of local Nigerian businesses, located in Surulere, Lagos, Nigeria on Google maps. The encircled business address (CarolineWabara.com) is mine with a link to my website’s landing page and phone number. It came up on the front page of Google local search engine under the “web designer category, Surulere, Lagos.”
Do you know what this means for my business?
This means three things for my business:
- Potential customers searching for businesses on Google maps can locate my business via their mobile phones and on the internet (mobile and local search + more publicity).
- Potential customers can easily land on my website via the internet and on their mobile phones to learn more about my business and possibly subscribe to my newsletter or buy my products/services (online/mobile website traffic + more leads conversion = online sales).
- Potential customers can walk into my office residence to patronize my services (offline traffic + more leads conversion = offline sales).
How My Business Got Listed On Google Places/Mobile Maps:
I was searching on Google last January and saw Google advert titled “place your business on Google places”. I decided to check it out and listed my business with a business photo, videos and business-related keywords. They notified me that my business listing was successful but the verification was pending. I even went ahead to write a limited coupon offer for my potential customers who check in to my office on a specific date.
Google told me it would take several weeks before my business would begin to show up on Google/mobile maps search engine. So I completely forgot about the whole Google places thing.
Then it happened! A guy (Mitchell Onyiah) sent me a message on Facebook. He informed me about his searching for an address located in Surulere, Lagos when my business address popped up on his mobile phone.
With his permission, here is a screenshot of the facebook message that transpired between us:
After that conversation, I decided to check things out for myself on my mobile phone by typing the keyword “Surulere, Lagos” and Nnobi, Surulere, Lagos. There was my business address staring back at me.
Was I so thrilled? I knew I was stepping on a gold-mine right here and decided to share it with you my esteemed readers.
So, is your business on Google maps? If not, you are throwing money, sales, publicity and leads to your competitors next door. Get your business on Google and mobile search today to stand heads and shoulders above your competitors, because Google local/mobile search have come to replace the yellow pages and normal search engines. What’s more? It’s absolutely free!
- In order to register, you need a Google account, to log in to Google Places.
- Add your official website URL, business, products, and contact details.
- Insert the most important keywords on the texts.
- Take advantage of this online presence by adding corporate logo, photos of your store and/or products along with videos.
- Check if there are any third party listings of your business or mistakenly located listings.
- Authenticate your listing and claim ownership in order to have control and to provide official and updated information.
- Use coupons for offers to run short term campaigns for your business.
- Regularly study the impressions and links provided by reporting analytics.
- A paid plan can work additionally using an Adwords campaign showing up your ads on Local Search results. The coupons as an extra promotion tool within Google places are provided for free.
Have you recorded sales in your business with Google local search? Please share your success story with us.