Google+ Local Includes Option to Merge with Google+ Business

If you’ve worked with Google+ Local (previously Google Places) in the past, you know that there is virtually no customer support for the overabundance of issues that occur month over month.  Instead, we troll through the Google Places Help Forum to get the latest information on G+ Local and gripe about what isn’t working.

This past Friday, one of the Google employees on the help forum shared some great news – local businesses that have created a Google+ Business Page can now merge that page with their Google+ Local Listing!

The merge will undoubtedly improve your local listing on Google+

From a reputation management perspective, you will have the opportunity to show potential customers more about yourself through customized pictures and engaging content uploaded to your posts stream.

Also, when satisfied customers make their way to your newly merged page, they will have the ability to write a positive review and circle your business into their Google+ circle from the same location.

Chicago Music Exchange Google+ Page

From an SEO perspective, merging your two Google+ listings can only support your business’ validity in Google’s eyes.  Think of it this way – if Google is in charge of serving up what they believe to be the most legitimate and helpful listings for users, they will use whatever information they have on hand.  Google+ (clearly a Google product) is a great resource for the search engine to use in order to determine which businesses have their ducks in a row.  After all, I’ve found that if you play by Google’s rules, you will be rewarded in the long run.

How do I merge my Google+ Local Listing with my Google+ Business Profile?

Per Google employee, Jade W., in the Google Product Forums:

Just click on Verify now on the right side of the page. You’ll need to verify that you’re representing your business by having a postcard sent, even if you’re a verified business owner on Google Places for Business. Also note that verification will only work for pages created in the “Local Business or Place” category in Google+.

Further, the Google+ Help Forum has updated some tips on verifying your page.

1. Hover over Unverified at the top of your Google+ page. Click the Verify now button when it appears. Or, click Verify now in the Is this your business? section below the map.

2. Confirm your address and click Request postcard again. Your postcard should arrive within a week or so.

3. Once it’s arrived, go to the website listed on the postcard, http://www.google.com/local/verify.

4. If you’ve requested a postcard for multiple Google+ pages, make sure to click on the name of the business that the postcard is for.

5. Enter the PIN listed on the postcard and click Submit.

With these quick steps, you should be on your way to a condensed, optimized Google+ presence!  Be sure to contact me with any questions about the process, its benefits, or for troubleshooting tips.  Happy merging!

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