From setting up to standing out, here's everything you need to know.
Very important. In fact, it’s one of the most important things you can do when building up your agency’s online presence. Because as much as a fresh new website design puts you ahead of the curve, getting traffic to that site is essential.
That’s where Google My Business comes in. Featuring everything from your office address, to your phone number and reviews, it’s your virtual calling card. Whether someone directly searches for your agency or for insurance in the areas you serve, if you have an up-to-date, accurate listing with positive reviews, there’s a much better chance your listing will show up ahead of the competition.
Where To Start?
Gaining ownership of your agency’s Google My Business is key to having a consistent, accurate listing. By having full control, you’ll know that everything is correct and prevent any miscommunications from happening in the first place.
Just imagine someone driving twenty minutes to your office only to find it closed because the hours on your listing are inconsistent with the hours posted on your front door. Not only would that likely cost you a prospective client, but it could also hurt your reputation with a negative review.
The good news is that Google My Business can prevent misinformation and create consistency, which is exactly what your agency needs. Still not sure where to begin? We’ll show you everything you need to know to get your listing up and running.
01. Find Your Google My Business Listing
The first step is to find out whether or not your agency even has a Google My Business listing. You can do that by simply doing a search for your agency’s name and address on Google. If it comes up, you’re one step closer to gaining access. If not, don’t worry. We’ll show you how easy it is to create one.
02. Create Your Listing
Next, you can add all the basic information like your official agency name, address, phone number, and so on. If your agency does have a listing, Google will recognize the information and suggest that you claim it.
Remember that everything can be edited, but make sure you get your address information correct. There are a few settings here that determine whether or not your physical address will be visible once your listing is live. So if you deal with clients over the phone or by email and don’t want them walking through your door, be sure to change the settings.
03. Verify Your Listing
Whether you’re claiming an existing listing or starting one from scratch, verifying it is as simple as it is secure. With options ranging from email, phone call, to a postcard sent through the mail, Google takes you through the process to update your free Google listing.
Whichever method you decide to choose, keep in mind that when using the email or phone methods, you’ll likely have your listing live on the same day. If you go with the postcard in the mail, it can take up to five days to receive it in the mail.
Managing Multiple Accounts
If you have more than one office location, whether it’s two or ten, you’ll need to make a listing for each of them. Why? Because Google My Business is all about gaining traction on the local level.
Say that you have an office in Philadelphia and another in Pittsburgh. Your Philadelphia listing would only show up when someone is searching for insurance agencies in that area, and vice versa. Also, reviews are unique to each location and establishing multiple listings can help build your credibility in the long-term.
To create more than one listing, you would follow the same steps mentioned above, which can all be done on one Google account. And, if you’d like to give other team members access to a listing, you can simply add their email address as a user to give them permission to view, edit, manage, or even have full admin control.
What To Do Next?
After it’s verified, your listing will be live in no time and will show up when someone directly searches for your agency. It will also appear in Google Maps amongst other agencies in your area. But now that you’ve got this far, it’s time to strategize on how to rank higher on Google Maps and in general.
Reviews and Reputation
Every small detail makes a big difference, and your long-term goal is to earn positive Google My Business reviews from your clients. This is the first thing people look at when shopping for agencies, which is the same way they shop for products online. What your local business reviews are will determine whether or not someone will click on your website. An agency with 100 5 star reviews has much more credibility than one who has 10 reviews with a 3.5 average.
Setting Your Agency Apart
In addition, adding photos of your team and agency, adjusting your business category, and including a short description all work together to set your agency apart from the rest while highlighting what’s important.
There’s a lot that goes into building your online presence, and having a listing on Google is essential. It’s also a great first step towards building an SEO strategy for your agency.
If you have any questions about Google My Business or building your insurance agency’s online presence, feel free to reach out to the Forge3 team today.
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Did you know?
Google My Business is 100% free to use and easy to claim and update. In fact, you can start building your optimized listing today!