The phenomenon of "Googling Yourself" has risen in popularity over recent years. What began as an ego-building exercise has become a great tool to identify and shape one's personal brand. However when is the last time you Googled Your Business? With search engines providing a window into a business' online presence, it is important that we monitor what we can see through that window. From website errors, to old information, to incorrect contact information and private data; many businesses will be surprised by what Google can see and is showing.
Google My Business
The most important tool you should be using is Google My Business (GMB). GMB allows you to create a listing that will appear on Google both in Search and in Maps. It's free and doesn't take long to set up. From there you can manage all contact information, hours and photos of your business. Reviews will also appear here.
The whole point of people searching your business should be to
A) Find the information they need about you
B) Drive traffic to your website
When your customers are browing Search results, the last thing they want to see is search entries of 'test' pages of website or pages with errors. This is the equivalent of leaving trash at the door to your business; far from professional and certainly not the first impression you were hoping to make with current or prospective clients.
The next thing you should do is to simply browse through the Search pages and see what is coming up for your business name. Keep in mind though if there is a business with the same or similarly spelt name as yours it can be difficult to control what is showing up.
Another thing to consider is your presence on third party sites including Social Media and other review sites, for example. If these are showing up for your business, take the time to make sure the information on these pages is correct and make the changes where needed.
So take the time to review your business and how it appears in search results - not just for Google, but for all search engines. Ensuring that the information displayed there is for "public viewing" will ensure that you can make the best first impression with your online presence.
If you've done this and you're not happy, it may just be a case of updating your information and waiting patiently while Google indexes the new information. Sometimes, your site will need to be updated or overhauled completely. If you think it's time for a site update, go through this checklist first.
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