Google My Business Guide for small business owners in Nigeria. This article is a Google My Business step-by-step guide (with pictures) for small business owners in Nigeria. It serves as a guide to help small businesses set up their own Google My Business listing and for optimizing your listing for local searches.
One of the challenges small businesses in Nigeria face is getting customers to find their products and services. Especially, after struggling to invest in starting a small business and there is almost nothing left to spare for marketing.
Yet, everyday Google is being asked questions relevant to your business. Examples of recent questions people are asking Google are:
- “Where can I hire a bicycle in Abuja?”
- “Where can I buy Infinix smart 4c in Ikorodu?”
- “Where can I get an organic soap in Bariga?”
Google My Business guide for small business owners
Google My Business guide – types of small businesses that qualify for Listing
- It has a physical address.
- You serve customers face to face.
- You serve customers at their locations.
Do you have a storefront where you display your products? For example, a fashion store that sells items such as shoes, clothes and bags.
If you have a physical location where you meet with or attend to customers.
That is, if your business involves attending to customers in-person during particular times in a day. For example, a salon where customers come in to get a hair cut.
Also, if you serve customers in their locations. For example, if you provide services to people in the homes or offices such as a plumber or an electrician.
Your business can be a mix of these three.
Three factors that improve search results on Google
When someone searches for businesses in your area, these three factors improves the likelihood of them seeing your business in the search results.
In terms of relevance, your business is more likely to appear in search results if your listing has relevant business information.
For example, in the case where a customer is searching for “a beauty salon where I can fix my dreadlocks in Tanke Ilorin”.
A “Nikky Beauty Salon” located in “Tanke Ilorin” is relevant to that search.
Therefore, relevance involves being as detailed as possible when adding your business information.
As a result, Google would better understand your business and match relevant searches to your listing.
Using the same example above, the “Nikky Beauty Salon” listing in “2 University Road, Tanke Ilorin” is very explicit in terms of its location.
Although, Google will calculate distance based on what is known about the user making the search.
However, your listing is more likely to appear in search results because you have given Google a specific business location term to match the searches with.
The prominence of your business is based on the information Google has about the business across the web.
This can be through articles, links or directories. Therefore you’ll notice that many businesses that are prominent offline also tend to be prominent online.
Your business prominence in local search result can be improved through customer reviews and ratings. In addition, your ranking in web results also influence local search optimization.
How to set up Google My Business for small business owners
Step 1: Go to Google My Business
Step 2: Enter Your Business Name and Address in the Search Box
Note that your business name is expected to be represented on Google My Business as it is in the real world. Therefore, use the same business name that is on your signage, stationery, and other branding.
Step 3: Add business category
Make sure your address is as accurate and precise as possible. This can be a challenge for some small businesses in Nigeria.
Especially if your location is in an area that is not well numbered.
However, the key is to ensure that your give the most accurate and concise description of your business.
You’ll be asked if you also serve customers outside this location. For our example we say yes because Nikky Beauty Salon also offers home service.
Step 4: Add contact details
Step 5: Verification
However, before you can manage and represent a business on Google. You need to confirm that the business is actually yours. Although there are a number of ways Google verifies businesses such as:
- Phone Call
Contact support if you haven’t received your postcard in 30 days.