If you have a “brick and mortar” store or restaurant, you want people to be able to find it while traveling with their smart phones. Even if a page for your business already exists on Yelp, Google Maps, and Apple Maps, you want to claim ownership of the information on these pages so that you can insure the accuracy of the information and make it as attractive as possible.
This information is for stores, offices, and restaurants having a fixed street location and are not run out of a residence. The procedures may also differ for some countries other than USA. It should also be noted that some of these web sites frequently make changes and their help pages can be extremely unhelpful.
Claiming A Page
Apple, Google, and Yelp have special web sites for businesses wishing to claim and manage the information on their businesses.
- Google – The site is http://business.google.com and it uses the standard Google accounts. The information entered on this site is used for both the Google search engine and Google Maps.
- Apple – Management of the Apple Maps pages is done via http://mapsconnect.apple.com and it uses the Apple ID accounts. This site is used for controlling the location of the map pins for the businesses, while the rest of the information is taken from Yelp. You should note that Apple Maps is not accessible via the web. You will have to go to an Apple iOS application for the iPhones and an Apple OS X application for laptops and desktops.
- Yelp – Go to the site http://biz.yelp.com to manage your Yelp page. Yelp is different in that many of their sites have separate systems of account names and passwords. An account for http://www.yelp.com will not work for http://biz.yelp.com. You will create the account for biz.yelp.com when you claim your first business page.
The process for claiming a page is fairly similar across the three vendors mentioned above.
- When you first log on to the site, you will be shown a web page showing the business pages that you manage, and there will be a button to click for selecting an additional business location. If you haven’t claimed any business pages yet, you will start with the page for selecting an additional location.
- You will insert the name of the business and at least part of the address on the web page. For USA locations, the city and state will often be enough. For other countries, enter the location as if you were sending mail from another country. (e.g. London Ontario Canada or London United Kingdom) The next page will show you a list of businesses that match the criteria. You may have to supply the street address if there are too many listings.
- If you can’t find an entry for the business, it is possible that the name of the business has changed since the reference database for the site was last updated. Try the old business name. There should also be information on the page about how to enter a new business. However, this may cause a delay because it will have to be verified.
- When you go through the process, a message should pop up indicating whether the business location has already been claimed. If it has already been claimed, it is possible that somebody else working for the business has already claimed it or it may have been claimed by a previous owner. There will be information on the page on how to proceed if you believe that the page should be available.
- After you select the business, you will be asked to enter information about the business location such as hours, type of business, links to other web sites, etc. After entering all the information, you will be asked to confirm your identity.
- The databases for the sites have telephone numbers listed for each of the businesses. The system will call the telephone number and one of two things will happen: the telephone number will contain a number to be entered on the web page, or the web page will contain a number that will be entered via the telephone.
- You have now claimed the business page and can use the web site to manage it. If you are using Google or Apple Maps, you should make sure that the map pin is where you want it. For a number of reasons, the location of the pin may not be where you want it. The database used by the site may only have data for selected street numbers and may be interpolating for the rest. There may be an error in the address. In addition, you normally want the map pin to fall at the customer entrance for the business. In other cases, you may want it to fall where the drive leading to the business enters a public road.
This blog entry was previously entered on LinkedIn as https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/putting-your-business-map-bradley-ross
I will be adding some links from time to time which will provide additional information.
- https://biz.yelp.com This is the Yelp for Business Owners web site.
- https://www.yelpblog.com This is Yelp’s blog.
- https://www.yelp-support.com/article/How-do-I-claim-a-business-page?l=en_US, “How do I claim a business page?”
- https://www.yelp-support.com/Free_Tools_for_Your_Business?l=en_US, “Free Tools for Your Business”