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Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Google now allows users to connect G+ Brand Pages to Google maps

Combining Your Business Page And Google Maps

It’s the month of social media updates! First, Yelp announced the addition of video to its reviews, and Bing is enhancing its maps capabilities. Now Google is allowing users to connect their Google Plus business pages to their local business listings on Google Maps. But wait, what’s the difference between the two, and what does that mean exactly? Here’s the scoop.
This new chance to link to Google Maps only applies to the local business or place type of Google Plus page. A Google Plus business page is an account you can create for your brand, similar to a personal Google Plus page. The term business page encompasses the five types of Google Plus pages. Also, a Google Plus local business listing is the verified name, address, phone number and other business information searchable in Google Maps.
As you can see in the screenshot below, there are five different types of Google Plus page categories.
Image courtesy of Google Plus
Image courtesy of Google Plus
  1. Local Business or Place
  2. Product or Brand
  3. Company, Institution or Organization
  4. Arts, Entertainment or Sports
  5. Other

Create And Add A Local Business

Having both a business page and Google Maps listings is confusing. Now, Google is making it less complicated and allowing you to combine the two. Here’s how to do it. Google explains in detail on its support page, but the directions are pretty complicated, so we’ll try to help make it simpler.
  • First choose your status, either you have never added your local business to Google or you have already created a page that is not connected to Google Maps.
  • If you have never added your business, you need to first add and verify a new business location.
  • Follow the steps for adding a listing and typing in your full business information.
  • Go through the verification process either by phone or postcard. Once verified, you can move on to the transfer process.
Image courtesy of Google
Image courtesy of Google

Connect Your Business Page

If the second option applies to you and you have already created a page for your business, but it’s not connected to Google Maps, follow these instructions.
  • Make sure your business meets quality guidelines before connecting to Google Maps. Only authorized owners can verify listings.
  • Next, if you haven’t already, go through the steps to create a separate local Google Plus page and verify it on Google Maps.
  • After the separate page is verified, log on again to Google Plus, and click on the blue “manage this page” button, making sure that you are managing the “verified local business” page.
  • As you can see on the image below, the two pages will look very similar, but you will see a verification shield next to the name of the verified page.
  • Next, in the top left corner, go to dashboard and then settings. In the profile section, select “connect to a different page” and “link a different page to this location” then click confirm. And voila!
Image courtesy of Google Plus
Image courtesy of Google Plus
If you made it through this process, we commend you and know it will be helpful for your business. A Search Engine Land article by Barry Schwartz explains the benefits of linking your pages. It’s especially helpful for businesses that have more than one Google Plus page, and you won’t lose any followers, posts or page managers in the transfer. You’ll also be able to get reviews once your page is connected to Google Maps.
To see more of what the newly connected and the former local pages will do, read the full Google support answer.
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