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GET YOUR REAL ESTATE BUSINESS ON GOOGLE FOR FREE

The definition of GOOGLE MY BUSINESS, according to Google Support, is a free and easy-to-use tool for businesses and organizations to manage their online presence across Google, including Search and Maps. By verifying and editing your business information, you can both help customers find you and tell them the story of your business.

Google loves local businesses so this is their way of helping local businesses get seen more by consumers. Google My Business combines Google+, Maps, and Google Search  into one convenient all-in-one business solution which in turn helps you get more easily found! Can I get an AMEN?

Benefits include a Google+ Page for your business which others can engage with, tracking insights and enagagement, manage and review metricsw from your YouTube Channel and Google Analytics Account and seamlessly start and manage a Google AdWords campaign.

So how does it work?

  1. The first thing you should do is visit https://www.google.com/business/ and sign in with your Google account.
  2. Next, add a single location and type of business (choose Real Estate Agency for the brand category).
  3. Google might ask you to place a marker on the map correctly.
  4. On the next page, Google will prompt you with a few suggested addresses. Choose “none of these match” at the very bottom.
  5. The last and most important step is to verify your business listing. Assuming you did everything correctly, you will be brought to a screen that says “how would you like to get your verification code” with just the mail option. Once you receive the code (Usually it takes 14 days for the postcard to arrive), login to Google My Business and click on the Verify Now button on top. Enhance your profile page by adding photos, writing a detailed business description, offer coupons or specials, upload videos and asking for reviews.

More good news …

Recently, Google added a new feature called Google Posts, formerly called Candidate Cards. It can show up on Google Search and Google Maps along with your business details when someone searches you. Posts can be up to 300 words long, giving you ample opportunity to convey valuable information that resonates with your audience. If your title and image are catchy and people click on it, you could send them to a landing page.

Google definitely favors websites that are fast and mobile-responsive over ones that aren’t because most of Google’s users are mobile. Google Posts have a card-based design making it very easy on the eyes. Users will easily see it when they search for your business or topics related to your business. Thoughtful design will attract more mobile customers in your area.  Creating a Google Post is very easy. Simply log into the dashboard, then head to the left side of the screen to access the “Posts” area. From there, you can select “Add A New Post”. The jury is still out as to how much benefit you could get from Google Posts. But it takes almost zero effort and it’s free. So if you have a new listing, a new team member or an event to promote, I think it’s worth the time. I mean, it is GOOGLE so it can’t hurt your rankings, right?

Kara Macdonald is the Vice President of Pruitt Title, LLC. She has over twenty years of experience in processing, closing and marketing in the real estate and title insurance industry. Pruitt Title is a woman owned, independent title insurance company licensed in Maryland, Virginia and the District of Columbia. She can be reached by email at kmacdonald@pruitt-title.com and on her cellphone: 571-432-9382.