I shared why a business needs a Google+ page in 3 Reasons to Have a Business Page on Google+. Here is a 6-step guide on how to help you set your business up to capitalize on the benefits of a Google+ page.
1. You must have a personal profile before you can create your page. If you have a Gmail account or any other Google product account then you already have an account so you just need to add your personal information. Click this link to sign in or you can create an account.
3. Click on the red “Create New Page” tab on the top right.
NOTE: You can create and manage multiple pages.
4. Select the category that best describes your business. If you have a storefront you will want to create “Local Business” or Place.
You will be prompted to enter your phone number and Google will attempt to locate your business and will list the address. If it can’t find your business, then enter the details and click "Create." If you are not a local business with a storefront then choose one of the other categories, enter your business name, select a category, and click "Create."
5. Add your profile photo (250x250px minimum), tagline (10 keywords that describe your business), introduction, website, hours, contact info, etc. You will also upload your custom cover image. Your cover image gives you prime real estate to include a call to action, contact info and a way to visually to your story. Unlike Facebook, there are no limitations on how you can use this image.
6. The final step is to verify your page. Hover over "unverified" and request to be verified. Google will send a postcard with a pin number to the address listed on the page. You need to enter that pin to verify your page. Once you've done that, you've got an official Google+ business page!
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For additional information on Google+ business pages, Patsy recommends checking out Google’s user guide Getting Started with Google+ for Business.
Patsy Stewart is a social media practitioner and owner of The Social BUZZ Lab. Her posts for Handshake 2.0 generate top ten buzz. You're invited to read more from Patsy Stewart on Handshake 2.0 and more about Google + on The Social Buzz Lab Blog.