Update: Google+ Has Been Replaced By Google Workspace and Google Business Profile
Since the publication of this article in 2011, Google+ has been discontinued and is no longer an active platform.
In 2019, Google officially shut down the social network, citing low usage and challenges in maintaining a viable product. While many of the principles of setting up a branded social media presence still apply today, it is important to note that Google+ is no longer a viable option.
Instead, businesses should focus on establishing a presence on popular social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram, as well as optimizing their Google My Business listing for improved visibility in Google search results.
Getting Started with Your Google Business Profile
To get you started, here are the steps for creating a Google Business Profile, as well as some tips for making the most out of the platform:
- Sign up for Google My Business: Go to the Google My Business website and click on the "Manage Now" button. Follow the prompts to create your profile.
- Verify your business: Google will ask you to verify your business by sending a verification code to your business address. Once you receive the code, enter it in your Google My Business account to complete the verification process.
- Optimize your profile: Add accurate and complete information about your business, including your business name, address, phone number, hours of operation, and website URL. You can also add photos, videos, and other content to make your profile more attractive to potential customers.
- Manage your reviews: Encourage customers to leave reviews on your Google Business Profile. Respond to both positive and negative reviews to show that you value customer feedback and are committed to providing excellent service.
- Post updates: Use Google Posts to share news, offers, and other updates with customers. Posts appear on your Google Business Profile and can help you engage with potential customers.
- Monitor your insights: Google provides analytics about how customers interact with your Google Business Profile. Use this information to understand what's working well and where you can make improvements.
Tips for Getting Started with Your Google Business Profile
- Make sure your information is accurate and up-to-date.
- Encourage customers to leave reviews on your profile.
- Respond to reviews promptly and professionally.
- Use Google Posts to share updates and offers.
- Monitor your insights and make adjustments as needed.
- Consider using Google Ads to reach more customers.
[Here is the legacy (circa 2011) article for reference]
Google+ has set records for its fast growth. But has it really had an impact on the average social user? And now, months after its initial launch, Google has launched their Google+ Pages for businesses. The debate begins whether businesses will benefit by adding Google+ to their social media marketing plan, or to stick with the likes of Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter.
Our attitude is why not? Setting up a Google+ page won’t harm you and any added exposure for your business is good. And if Google+ does take off, you’re already in on the ground floor of something big. Plus, setting up a business page is quick and easy.
To show how painless it is to set up a business page, below please find each step of the process so you can have yours up and running in no time too:
Go to http://www.google.com/+/business/ to get started. Then click on “Create Your Google+ Page”.
Next, pick a category for your business. Choose from “Local Business of Place”, “Product or Brand”, “Company, Institution or Organization”, “Arts, Entertainment of Sports” or, if your business doesn’t fit neatly into one of those categories, you can choose “Other”. In our case, since Man I Hate Mondays is a weekly webisode, we selected “Arts, Entertainment or Sports”.
Once you select your category you will be able to add your company or brand name and website address. Then add a sub-category. The sub-categories differ depending on which category you initially chose.
Then check the box if you agree to Google’s terms and there’s another box to check if you want to be informed of future Page release and information.
When you are all done on this page, press the red “Create” button.
On the next screen, you will customize your business page’s public profile. For your tagline, Google allows you only ten words to create your message – so make those ten words count! On this page you can also upload a profile picture.
When finished, press the blue “Continue” button.
Now you can tell your personal Google+ circles about your new business profile. If you decide to post news about your business here, remember the message will sent through your personal profile.
You’ve just set up your Google+ business page. On the welcome screen you’ll find a link to your business profile page as well as a Google+ button you can add to your website.
Now you can start adding people to circles and posting on your wall.
We found it very easy to post the latest Man I Hate Mondays video right from Youtube.
Now that Google+ has built it, will businesses come? Only time will tell. Google still has an uphill climb if they are going to convert Facebook’s 800 million users to Google+, but their business pages are a step in the right direction. Google+ isn’t perfect by any means. Like other social media networks, upgrades will most likely come. Things seem a bit underdeveloped and unorganized so far.
Having the power and influence of Google’s search engine and ad tracking system makes it an instant player in the social media game. Like many others, we’re curious to see how long it takes Google+ to move up in the rankings.
Have you set up a Google+ business page yet? Are you planning to? Do you think Google+ will eventually replace your Facebook page as your main social media marketing strategy? We want to hear from you! Tell us what you think in the comments section of this post on our Facebook Fan Page. Thanks for reading!