Have you claimed your local search listings? If not, you should. Claiming any online listing of your business verifies that you are the owner of a valid business and gives you control of the information shown on your listings. Here’s how to claim your Big Three listings on the web: Google, Facebook, and Yelp.
Google My Business (GMB) is the cornerstone of Local SEO. Claiming or adding your local business is free and makes you as visible as possible online (including Google Search and Google Maps).
To get started, visit Google My Business. Click Manage Now and enter the name and address of your business. If your business already exists on Google Search or Maps, you’ll be prompted to select the listing and make any edits. If your location is already claimed by another email account, you can request access from the current owner. Click Request Access, fill out the form, and submit—you should receive an email confirmation within 7 days. If you don’t hear back after a week, you may see the option to claim the listing from your GMB dashboard.
If your business is new to Google, you’ll be prompted to enter the category that fits your business best and current contact details. To manage the listing, click Finish and select a verification method. You can either receive a phone call or text to your business phone line, or opt for verification by mail. If you’re verifying by phone, you’ll receive a 6-digit verification code. Enter the code and click Verify to publish your listing.
If you select verification by mail, you’ll receive a postcard with a verification code in about 5 business days. Once you’re received the verification code, sign into Google My Business and click Verify location or Verify now to enter your unique code.
Now that your listing is claimed on Google, you can edit your business information, stay on top of reviews, view insights about your customers, and share special events and offers, all in one place.
Reach and connect with your audience on Facebook. To get started, log into your personal Facebook account and search for your business by name. If an unmanaged or unofficial Page already exists for your business, you can request to claim it—select Is this your business? From there, you have the option to merge the unmanaged page into a verified page that you already manage, or claim and verify the page by phone to your business phone line.
If your business is new to Facebook, click Create in the top blue toolbar and select Page. Choose a Category for your Page (in this example, Business or Brand) and click Get Started. Add the name of your business and enter a word that best describes your business in the Category box, then select the best suggested category. Enter your business address and phone number, and click Continue.
Next, you’ll upload a profile photo and cover photo that represents your business. The profile photo is most commonly your logo, or any photo that is representative of your branding and services. Navigate to the left-hand menu and click About. From there, you can edit your page info and add more details about your business, including your website, business hours, price range, products offered, and more.
Beneath your cover photo, you’ll see the option to Add a button. This call-to-action button encourages your Page visitors to contact you, visit your website, schedule an appointment, and more. Select a button from the drop down menu, follow the prompts, and click Finish to add the button to your Page.
Now that your listing is claimed on Facebook, you can post updates, keep tabs on customer recommendations, and take advantage of Facebook Insights, a free feature that helps you understand when your page audience is most active and which posts are receiving the most engagement.
Showcase your business on Yelp to improve your SEO and generate leads. To get started, visit Yelp for Business Owners. Click Get Started and enter the name and zip code of your business. If a listing already exists, you’ll see the prompt “Is one of these your business?” - select your business listing from the dropdown list and create a Yelp business user account to claim and manage the listing. If you already have a business user account, log in to claim the listing.
If your business doesn’t exist on Yelp, select Add Now and enter your business location, contact information, and email address. Click Add business, then check your inbox to verify your email address and publish your listing to Yelp.
Now that your listing is claimed on Yelp, you can read and respond to customer reviews and messages, answer customer questions, and share photos to showcase the best of your business.