Things to avoid when starting to optimize your google places listing

When you are looking to create an online presence for your business many business owners make their first step by optimizing their Google Places listing. A Google Places listing is a very important piece to creating an online presence for your business. However, many business owners make a few simple mistakes when they begin optimizing their Google Places listing.

Lacking consistency. Once you make the decision to create an online local presence, you must be consistent with the name, address and phone number of your business matching the information in your Google Places listing. Your online presence must keep the name address and phone number consistent through out the web to achieve the full results of optimization.

Only adding 1 or 2 photos or not adding photos is a big mistake when optimizing your Google Places listing. Google Places allows up to 8 photos so take full advantage and add 8 photos. This is a way to visually showcase your business, services and products. Make sure the 8 photos you plan on using are saved on your computer with a title that includes the location of your business and a keyword you are focused on targeting.

Not using all 5 category fields. It is a great idea to use your keywords for the service categories you provide to customers but you need at least one of the 5 categories to be a google approved category. When you are typing a service into the category field Google will populate suggestions or a guess to what you are typing, select one of these suggestions for a Google approved category. Also it is best to avoid putting a location in the category fields.

Do not keyword stuff your description! Using a keyword more than once in the description will not help with your optimization efforts. When creating your business description it  should be informative of what your business does as well as being easy to understand for a reader and have the location of your business listed.

Not including additional details. Add the hours your business is open, what forms of payment are available for customers and what services and specialties your business offers.

Hiding your address. When you hide your address on Google Places you will never achieve optimization. Google does not see legitimacy for listings that are unwilling to show their address.

Not owner- verifying your Google Places listing. Owner verifying helps tremendously with optimization because the business is now proven to be a legitimate business. When your business is not owner verified anyone can make a change to the places listing information.

Not adding an offer to your listing. You need to have at least 3 offers available on your Google Places listing. Whether the offer is a free consultation or a discount or a promotion etc you need to have 3.

Not soliciting reviews from customers. Ask your customers to leave reviews on your listing. The minimum goal to begin optimization is 5 quality positive reviews but the more positive reviews from your customers singing your praises is always a good thing.

Not including a youtube video. If you have a video for your business that is great. You should upload the video to you tube and include that video on your google places listing. If you do not have a video you can easily make one. There are a few websites you can use to create a video slideshow of pictures you have of your business. Upload that video to you tube and link to your places listing.

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