Google has now expanded their branded short URLs for Google My Business (GMB) to the public. Their public mention is directly within their updated Marketing with Google promotion. It’s incredibly user-friendly.
For how to create yours, Google has an easy help center post explaining it all.
Quick Localmn Example
Ours is simply g.page/localmn, or for you, g.page/[Your Company Name] . I did try to get the often-wanted 3-letter profile as in LMN, but Google requires that your ending is 5 or more characters. So, localmn it is. This shortened profile does entice me to improve my GMB info with increased info, more branded photos, offers, etc.
Easy Steps to Create Yours on a Laptop
- Sign into your GMB account
- Click the Info button in the left navigation
- Scroll down to the @ sign, click + or edit
- Create your shortened Google Page URL
Google’s Dominance of your GMB URL and profile
As mentioned in our recent Google Local Marketing Kit post:
The best (or worst) part of it is that Google owns all the data. Yep, they still own the local search content you provide. For this, they even own the analytics although they show you an overview in your GMB panel. I only imagine that they use all of this to help calculate your overall authority in the results, and indirectly, your rankings in the local 3-pack.Localmn Google Local Marketing Kit Post
If you want to use Google shortened GMB profiles for your link building purposes, it’s just not your best bet. Google owns it. If using them for indirect SEO results, awareness, branding, and overall users to your local business, organization, or area of interest, this can be a can’t-miss opportunity. Whether this is for you, only you can make your best decision.
For you marketers who specialize in national retailers with a ton of local stores, this could be a benefit for you as well in your @[your company name] strategies. Each location needs to have a unique @ name.
Somewhat of a side note – From a writer in different portals, for the last 3-4 years I have almost exclusively linked local businesses to their GMB page instead of their own website. Maybe, now visually showing these shortened URLs will become well-known enough to gain mainstream trust. I suppose only time will tell.
Initially, I really like shortened GMB URLs for certain businesses, organizations, and local areas of interest. What are your thoughts? Compelling, or is Google just trying to own the Internet? Comments are more than welcome!
Creating Your GMB
Creating a Google My Business profile has long been well-known as a local search must, even before your own website and for good reasons. Do a branded search for your local business, and chances are there’s a big knowledge box result for you whether you claimed, or verified it or not. You can create or edit your own. It’s easy and awesome.
Your Google My Business (GMB) profile is now often considered the home page for your local business. It makes sense. It’s highly visible, includes a link to your website, appointments or bookings, your own customized photos, including 360° photos, managing ratings and reviews, POSTS, and a lot more, actually.
Google Photos and Maps Photography
Organizing photos in Google Photos is a great starting point after claiming your business. They make it easy for you to edit your photos to your preference, and place them on your GMB profile.
You can title each album for your own organization, describe each picture, and automatically have your deets stored in exact location taken, camera used, date and time, and even exact size. Photo proof of your own!
Eventually, when you need photos for your GMB presence, you can be comforted at looking at your photos account like a switchboard. Look at an album, select a photo, use them as your profile, cover, logo, and POSTS.
We consider Maps Photography as quality photos with the intent to drive customers to your door. Include photos of your address, cross street signs and exterior 360° photos can imply and provide customers visual directions to you. Directions is arguably what the majority of customers are seeking.
360° Photo: Sign of the Mayo Clinic Gonda Building, reflection of downtown Rochester, move to view Methodist Hospital, the Kahler Grand and 2nd Ave SW.
After awhile, you’ll see that you’ll have enough real digital photos to use, without having to pay for fake stock photos. You know the ones. They’re attractive, with a smiling person pointing to a graph that goes up. Seriously, they’re horrible! An exception goes to Vince Vaughn and Dave Franco courtesy of @Buzz60 a few years ago, but I digress.
These photos can easily be done with a few photo and editing tactics. You could include your own staff, being serious, or being cleverly comedic like above by including a local celebrity. I’ve never met The Fancy Ray, but I’m a fan and love his local commercials and outdoor billboards. I’d love to see him in local stock photos like this. Again, I digress.
With a Street View app, (preferably along with a compatible 360° camera), you can create these photos publicly as long as Google accepts them to Maps. These are stored within your Street View app. Plus they can appear on your Google My Business profile, as well as providing an short, embedded code for you to include to media, social profiles, and content marketing strategies such as your blog.
Back to your Google Photos and albums. You can easily edit any photo on mobile or desktop. Often, it can just be by selecting Auto to bring the photo to life a bit like this one at On-Demand Group. There are plenty of other edits that make your photos pop, and auto is just one of the more popular ones.
We hope this helps your local business or organization. Happy Maps Photography to you all. Skål!
Google Photos can be used best when thinking as a user. You can use it on its own, for Google products such as Maps, or an organizer to distribute your photos to Apple Maps, other local portals or social sites such as Twitter, Facebook or Instagram.
And, you can use all of this solely for SEO reasons. Please don’t.
As mentioned in the video, it can take awhile to set up and customized to your liking or needs. An organized Google Photos account can be like a switchboard. Once it’s ready and you need a photo, you can pretty much pick it, then title, describe, tag it and place where you need it.
LocalMN Interactive provides years of local search experience, including Google Trusted Street View Photography. Ask for a quote for a website redesign, marketing and photography services through our contact page, phone or your social media portal of your choice.
LocalMN Interactive Marketing
15 S. 1st St, #A516
Minneapolis, MN 55401