Just Google it. Taking Control of Your Google Business Profile
Written by Jessica Rodrigues
Google is the search engine with the most market share and the most-visited website worldwide. As a business owner, your restaurant needs to be as visible as possible. Creating a Google Business Profile (Google My Business Page) is imperative for ensuring accurate restaurant information is available to customers and attracting new diners. It’s your online calling card. Your website URL, your restaurant’s description, photos, telephone number, online booking link, business hours, delivery area, delivery app links, videos and menus can all be added to your Business Profile. Even the street view and Google map for your eatery will be available for your potential new guests. It’s time to claim or update your profile.
The best part about claiming your page is it’s free. It’s a simple process that is user friendly. Start by signing into your business profile manager (google.com/business) and click “Manage Now”. Follow the steps such as entering your business name, entering your address, choosing your business category (restaurant, grocery etc.), and begin to add your information like website URL and phone number. The verification process follows where Google authenticates that you are the owner or manager of the business. Google will either call your official business number or send a postcard to the address to provide you with unique Google code. Enter the numeric code into your page and the profile is yours. While the process is straightforward, if you do run into any issues, there are FAQs available along the way. You can also always use the power of social media by tweeting @googlesmallbiz or @googlemybiz with your questions to get personalized service.
Once you have your profile, it’s time to speak to your customers! Whether you claim your page or not, guests can always leave a Google review of your restaurant. Now, you can respond, answer questions and control the conversation. The email address associated with your Google Business Profile will receive notifications when clients give you a star rating, with or without written feedback. Reviews are public and have an impact on how people view your brand. For positive reviews, make sure to thank the client for taking the time to write and visiting your establishment. For negative reviews, still thank the customer for the valuable feedback and provide a general email stating that you would like to learn more. Always endeavour to take the conversation off-line while showcasing publicly that you care for your customers.
Reviews can also provide insight into your product or offering. If clients are overwhelmingly criticizing a particular dish or a specific takeout container that always leaks, then perhaps it’s time to question why and make a change. Reviews are truly informative; responses demonstrate transparency and cultivate loyalty. Be sure to answer questions and be aware that customers can suggest changes to information found on your page so stay up to date. Whether you are improving your profile or setting one up for the first time, follow these steps to ensure your restaurant shows up on more searches and you are properly communicating with your customers.