Your Digital Presence - start with Google My Business

Your Digital Presence - Start with Google My Business

Your Digital Presence - Start with Google My Business

Google, google, google ...


  • when people want to find out something they don't know, they Google it.
  • when they look for a product or service, they Google it.
  • when they try to find your office location, they Google it.

The word Google has become a verb too.  As such, how can we afford not having your Digital Presence for your business on the internet?


One day, when you try to search over Google Maps, and surprisingly found your own company is in there, don't be surprised.  This is becoming more and more common nowadays.  But don't stop there.  Think about these following:

  1. You probably cannot stop this anyway, because these info are possibly pinned by your customers, who need this info in order to reach you.  If a customer is looking for your company, there is always a reason.
  2. Isn't this also your opportunities too, to acquire more customers, make it more convenient for them to reach you, or even a new channel for you to acquire more customers?
  3. Isn't this also a matter of branding too to your company?  This is online or digital presence.  This is a trend.

If you agree this can be something positive for your business, then Google My Business might be something you should look at.  It is free, and you can set it up yourself.

Today, if people try to find a doctor around them, they will likely take out their smartphones, go to Google map and search around.  A list of doctors will be listed with address locations, opening hours and pictures.  If you are a private doctor, of course you wish to be listed, and be found.  Same for other businesses, no matter you're doing online or offline business.  This is Digital Presence.  Google offers this Google My Business service free-of-charge to allow getting businesses on the Map.  It is probably the most effective free marketing tool available to small business owners today.  It feeds into Google Maps and Google Search.

There are, in general, 2 possibilities of Google Listing:

  1. There is no listing of your business yet, and you can create one.
  2. In some cases, people may found someone else has already verified this listing.  Owner of the business can also Request Ownership to claim the business.


What is included in Google My Business

Once joined, the following information of the business can be found online:

  • Categories
  • Business information
  • Name
  • Address
  • Phone number
  • Website
  • Business hours
  • Additional URLs


Individual Practitioners

Individual Practitioners refer to public-facing professional, like doctors, dentists, lawyers, financial planners, insurance or real estate agents, etc., typically with his or her own customer base.  Support staff should not create their own listings.  A practitioner should not have multiple listings to cover all of his or her secializations.

Additional considerations apply to multiple practitioners at one and the same location.  More details can be found under Guidelines for representing your business on Google.


Start from New

If there is no prior listing, business owners can start from new.  A Google Account is needed, which can be easily created online free-of-charge if not available.  Business owners should either do this on his own, or appoint trusted & authorized people to do this job because of the ownership.  A proper Google Account belonging to the business organization should be used instead of the individuals for proper security and sustainability.

To start the process, just click Google My Business and follow the instructions.


Claim My Business

For those who found the business is already on the list, it means someone else has already verified this listing.  Owners of the business can click Request Ownership.  Again, business owners should either go through this on their own, or appoint trusted & authorized people to do it.  As mentioned above, it is recommended to use a proper Google Account belonging to the business organization for the purpose of security and sustainability.  Business owners will require the permissions to make changes from time to time, though it shouldn't be too often.

Google will verify whether this is a genuine business owner, normally in at least one of the various ways as follow:

  • Postcarad - a postcard will be sent to the address claimed which include a verification code
  • SMS/Phone - a verification pin code through phone, or using the Google My Business mobile app
  • Email - verification code or button sent through email
  • Instant verification - for those who have same email account already verified for other business activities
  • Video verification - via video call with a Google My Business specialist to show the workplace or the vehicle, and answers to questions which demonstrate ownership of the business.


Maintenance & Management

Business organizations can have different roles of people assigned to manage the online information:

  1. Owner
  2. Manager
  3. Communications Manager

Details of permissions for different roles can be found in this article "How to request ownership of a business location"