1) Go to Google.com and type in your name (or the name of your real estate team). If you already have a GMB profile, it should appear at the top of mobile search results or to the right of desktop search results. Chris’s desktop profile for his SEO consulting business looks like this:

“You want to make sure you’re claiming the record that they already have for you, rather than creating a new one,” Chris says. Developing a second profile “Can be extremely perplexing to both existing and prospective clients.”

2a) Look for a link that says “Own this business?” on your GMB profile. (Note: Google changes the wording of this link on occasion, so it may be different depending on when you read it.) Click that link to get started with claiming your Google My Business profile. Google will walk you through the entire process from beginning to end.

2b) If you don’t see an existing profile with your name, you must create one. Go to business.google.com and look for the Get Started link/button. The button currently says “Manage now,” but this may change depending on when you read this.

You’ll need a Google account to claim an existing profile or create a new one. Google will recommend that you use your company’s email domain, but Chris advises against using your personal account/email address. “Use an account you don’t mind sharing with employees or other team members, because you’ll most likely want to delegate access to this profile to other people in the future.”

3) Follow Google’s on-screen instructions to claim or create your listing. You will be asked for basic business information such as your name, address, and phone number.

a) Include the words “Realtor” or “Real Estate Agent” in your company name, as in Sally Smith, Real Estate Agent. “Having the words’real estate’ or ‘Realtor’ in your business name will most likely help you rank higher in the Google My Business algorithm,” Chris says.

b) When Google asks you to select a category or categories, make sure to select all that are relevant to what you do. The terms “real estate agents” and “real estate consultant” are self-explanatory and should apply to all agents. Don’t include categories that aren’t relevant to your company’s nature.

Screenshot of Google My Business categories

4) At the end of the process, Google will notify you that it is time to verify your Google My Business listing. In most cases, this is accomplished through the use of mail. Within a few weeks, Google will send a postcard to the business address. The postcard will include a unique verification code as well as instructions for logging into Google My Business and entering the code to verify your business.

Other methods of verification, such as text, phone, email, or Google Search Console, are available to some businesses. If you have those options, follow the instructions and disregard the paragraph above about postcard verification.

Google warns that it could take a few weeks for your company’s information to become fully visible. Even if you must wait, you can always log in to business.google.com and optimize your profile.

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