Get Started with G+
In my last post, I discussed some of the reasons why businesses need to establish a presence on G+ as soon as possible. This time we’re going to go through the process of setting up your profile and Google Plus business page. If you don’t already have a personal G+ profile, you will need to set one up. If you already have a Google account (gmail, YouTube etc) then it’s easy – otherwise just go to http://plus.google.com
If you would like more detailed instructions, below is one of the best G+ profile setup videos I’ve come across – the process is explained slowly and clearly. It will be easy to go ahead and setup your own profile while watching/pausing the video.
Did you get your profile set up OK? Now for the next step!
Set Up Your G+ Business Page
In your personal profile, look on the right hand side of the page and you will find a button to “create a google+ page”.
After clicking this, you are taken to the next screen where you need to choose the appropriate category for your page:
As you can see, there are 5 categories:
- Local Business or Place – includes any local business, e.g. restaurant, dentist, accountant, solicitor, hair salon etc. If your business already has a Google Places listing, the details from that will be used, otherwise you’ll need to enter the business phone number and address.
- Product or Brand – according to Google, this would include cars, financial services, clothing, electronics – food and drink brands would also come under this category.
- Company, Institution or Organisation – also including charities and non-profit organisations
- Arts, Entertainment or Sports – pretty self-explanatory (books, films, musicians, bands, athletes etc)
- Other – to be used when your business doesn’t fit into any of the above categories.
For all categories, users will need to choose age ranges for which their page content will be appropriate, and there is a specific choice of “alcohol related” too. Finally, you’ll need to tick the box agreeing to the G+ Page terms, before clicking the “Create” button Make sure you read these terms before creating your page – there are similar guidelines regarding competitions and promotions as there are with Facebook, so don’t fall foul of these!
Personalise Your Page
Congratulations, you have set up your Google Plus business page! Now it’s time to personalise and customise the settings for your page. Firstly, you can give yourself a tagline (“10 words that describe your page best”, according to Google), and upload a profile photo. This would ideally be your business logo, but you can of course use any photo that represents your business. Once you’ve created your tagline and uploaded a photo, click “Continue”.
You are then asked if you want to share this Google Plus business page with your G+ circles – you probably won’t want to do this yet, as there’s no information on your page, so click “Finish” (you can go back later and share your page)
Edit Your Profile
Click the profile icon (top of page to the left of the google search box)
On the next screen, click the blue “Edit Profile” button and fill in as much information as you can – remember to use the “Recommended Links” section to put in details of your social media profiles, and other websites/blogs you own or are associated with. Don’t forget to use keywords throughout your profile!
Customise your Photostrip
You will see on the profile editing screen, below your page title, the words “add some photos here”. You can add up to 5 photos and they do not change on each page load as with Facebook. You could even get creative and split one photo into 5…… Just to get you thinking, here are a few examples.
Woohoo – your Google Plus business page is ready to share with the world! Once you’ve posted a few updates, use “Spread the Word” (in the right sidebar of your page) to share your page with your contacts.
Just as with your personal G+ profile, you are able to add contacts to “Circles” – the default Circles for a Google Plus business page are Following, VIPs, Customers and Team Members, but you can of course create new circles at any time. On G+ (unlike Facebook), you are able to follow your fans back, and add them to your page’s Circles. It’s a powerful way of connecting with current and potential customers! Your followers can +1 your posts and you can do the same for their comments – all of this adds to your visibility in Google search.
So what are you waiting for? I hope this has inspired you to get your business established on Google Plus – please share in the comments how you’re getting on, or if you’ve encountered any issues.
Need help setting up your G+ page? Take the first step! Contact me on 01777 249075
or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org