Search Engine Marketing: A Little Known Way To Gain An Edge

What do you do when you want to find information?

These days not many people turn to the yellow pages to find information on a business.  So what do they do when they want to find a business, service or any other type of information?  Google it!

That’s right.

Google has made it easy for your business to get a free page and get found locally.

Yes, free!

Do you know about Google Places?

In September 2009, Google changed the name from Local Business Center to Google Places. Along with this new name came powerful easy-to-use tools to manage your own business information directly on Google.

Google Places is a free online business page kind of like a yellow page listing only much, much better.  With your Google Places you reach millions because your business listing will be found on both and Google maps. In fact, you can edit your listing any time of day or night; add photos, videos and coupons.

What an opportunity!

I’m sure you have seen these pages show up for restaurants, retail shops and local hotspots. Don’t worry. The good news, it does not matter if you have a store front or not you can get found locally by claiming your Google Places page.

All you need to do is follow these three simple steps:

  1. Submit your information, from basic contact info to photos and video.
  2. Verify your listing by phone or postcard.
  3. Wait for your listing to appear on Google. (no more than 12 hours according to Google)

You are required to supply a physical address and phone number. Remember your location will show up on Google Maps therefore it is not recommended to use your home address. You can choose to display or not display your address on the map and on your places page.

Google places provide dashboard with a wealth of information and statistics. Much like Google Analytics the statistics show how many times users saw your business listing as a local search result. You also get stats on how many times users click on more info on the map, driving directions and click to your website.

Promote your business with Google

Flat rate advertising

They have an unbelievable offer that’s a flat fee of $25 a month which you can cancel anytime. At that price you can try it out to see what kind of results you can get. Google Tags is a unique feature that lets you advertise your business on the Google Map when local searches are made. Your business stands out because the searcher will see a yellow marker with scissors.

Printed or mobile coupons

I love this feature! Create and update the coupon yourself. You can even add an image, expiration date and coupon code. They give you the option to have your coupon printed or formatted for display on a mobile phone.

As of April 2010, four million businesses claimed their Place Page on Google, have you?  Claim yours now.

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