12 Tips on how to use Google for your chain business

Google is the search engine of choice for most people, with its Google Maps and search integrations in most major browsers both on desktop and mobile. Google has a 92% market shareof mobile searches. Google has unified many of their services in the tool Google My Business for business owners with a single location and its extension Google My Business Locations if you have multiple locations. Follow these simple pro tips to stay ahead of the competition.

ProTip #1 - Start using Google My Business Locations

With Google My Business Locations, you can manage multiple locations from one place with a simple bulk location management tool. If you need to change opening hours, description, categories you can do it on one place instead of changing each location individually.

ProTip #2 - Create A Business Account

Create a Business Account and add all your locations to that account. That way, more people on your team can manage your account and you don’t have to create fake personal accounts with shared logins - each person logs in with their personal accounts.

ProTip #3 - Add All Your Locations

It might seem obvious, but it has to be said - add all your locations to Google so people can find the nearest location - you don’t want to miss out on foot traffic because you do not show up on the map.

ProTip #4 - Claim Your Locations

Your stores might already be on Google. Make sure you own them so you can control the appearance and information people see. As long as you have not claimed your locations anyone can edit and suggest edits - the problem is that people believe you’re the source of information since it’s your place.

ProTip #5 - Remove Duplicate Locations

You don’t want to send people to locations that don’t exist anymore or have the wrong address. Make sure you remove all duplicate locations so people only see and go to the correct ones.

ProTip #6 - Add Address, Phone Number, Opening Hours & Website

The most important pieces of information people are looking for are where to go, how to get there and if it’s open. Google shows that information before anything else. Make sure people can find your place and let them know when it’s open. People lose trust in brands if there's misleading info eg. being directed to a place they thought was open but is in fact closed.

ProTip #7 - Add Logo and Photos

To many people, the first impression of your locations is your digital store fronts. They search for somewhere to shop, eat or drink and are faced with a list of options. You look professional by having your logo just as you have it outside your store, and photos of your place so they can get a feel for the atmosphere. You can add photos of the exterior, interior, menu and team.

ProTip #8 - Select Categories

A search probably starts maybe with something like ‘cafe’, ‘coffee shop in [city]’ or similar. If you’re a coffee shop chain you want to show up in that search result and you do that by adding categories to your listings. You can select more than one category but need to have one category as primary.

ProTip #9 - Add Labels

Another local search might start with just ‘coffee’, ‘flowers’, ‘burritos’ and to cover those searches you can add labels to your locations. If your place offers ‘vegan’ you can add that to labels so you can show up when people search for vegan restaurants.

ProTip #10 - Spread The News

Let people be aware of what’s going on at your locations, your current offerings, events and other news. You can share photos, videos, links, events and polls. The more up-to-date the information is, the more relevant you become to people that want to visit.

ProTip #11 - Engage With Your Audience

Most services these days let users rate, review and comment their experiences and visits. That information becomes useful to other users, especially new visitors. Use this to your advantage and thank people for their reviews, showing your appreciation of their efforts - or respond to critique with helpful information that make the visitors feel heard and seen. Often that’s all it takes. Show that you care about your visitors.

ProTip #12 - Start Measuring

Google is offering really good insights of your locations. You can see where the views are coming from, how people engage with your posts and how many people click on driving directions and make phone calls. These are powerful tools to measure your locations!

Make It Easy With PinMeTo

While you can do all of the things above manually, there’s an easier way for you to set up and manage your locations on multiple platforms. We’ve built PinMeTo to manage all your locations from one place for Facebook, Google Maps, Google Search, Google+, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and Foursquare. Get started, from €5/month/location.

Online Location Management is made easy with PinMeTo