Local SEO is an effective way of boosting a small business' online presence. When there are multiple businesses in the same address, though, it can be tricky to figure out how to provide Google My Business listings for each one. If you're wondering how you can register for a GMB profile, here are things you should know.
If you are the owner of several legally distinct businesses, you can create an individual GMB listing for each. When your businesses have separate physical locations registered with state and federal agents, a tax ID, or separate phone numbers, you can set up distinct listings for them.
Businesses without these distinctions are ineligible for separate listings. If your offerings are different product lines under a general umbrella, you cannot create separate listings for them. For instance, a landscape artist specializing in both wood and stonework cannot have separate GMB profiles for both. He cannot list them using virtual offices either.
If you use a shared office, you might be concerned that this could prevent you from having a GMB listing. However, if you have a unique, direct phone number you answer, and you have staff at the co-working space during your office hours, you can get a GMB listing. If any of the other businesses at your coworking space are competing for the same keywords as you, though, it is a different story. Note, however, that it could cause you or your competitors to get filtered through Google's mapping product.
Local SEO for co-located businesses must follow strict naming conventions. First of all, if one business is within another—a Tesco Express convenience store inside an Esso petrol station, for example—the GMB names should be separate. They should read "Tesco Express" and "Esso," not "Tesco Express in Esso." If the co-located brands operate collectively, they should create one listing using just one brand name.
At times, a business is so big that it has multiple departments large enough to be independent businesses in themselves. Starbucks Research and Development and Starbucks Marketing and Creative Studio can have listings in the same area. Provided that the departments have different words in their business names, separate GMB categories, and separate phone numbers.
A brand selling another company's merchandise does not need to include the brand name of the products they are selling in their GMB business name. A fully authorized and dedicated reseller, like a franchisee, can stipulate that in their GMB business. For example, a company might write that they are an official Apple reseller in their profile.
Finally, owners starting with several different businesses at one location should strive to keep the names distinct. If co-located businesses are named "Bright And Sunny HVAC Services" and "Bright And Sunny Landscaping," one of them could consider renaming.
Some business locations have two sets of hours for different companies. A gas station, for example, might operate 24 hours a day, but the convenience store inside it is only open from 6 AM to 10 PM. Google has several rules for this situation, which we have enumerated below.
Typically, when only one business ranks, Google is filtering out all but one in the same location. This situation happens when too many listings have the same elements. If you want to create multiple listings for businesses sharing categories or using the same keywords at the same address, Google will choose which to put at their maps' automatic zoom level. As such, it is inadvisable to create multiple GMB listings in this way.
Multiple businesses can share an address and rank decently on GMB listings. The local index of Google has hundreds of businesses with this type of listing. In this situation, you can safely rank as long as you have the correct details. When you correctly assess a business' eligibility, represent it honestly, and adhere to Google's best practices, you can increase your chances of getting a favorable ranking.
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