How many Google+ Pages do I need?

drian

Member
Joined
Dec 2, 2012
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10
As a SME, what is the best approach for listing your business in Google+? 2 Page Listings? One for the 'local' listing and one for the company?
I have come across national retailers where they have a Page for each outlet and a Page for the main company.
We should be doing the same for SMEs? It concerns me when listing a business as "Local Business or Place" in the Google+ Page Setup system, the implication is that the business is ONLY local and has no national presence. Not the case for most SMEs.
 

Linda Buquet

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Jun 28, 2012
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14,440
Hi drian,

Welcome to the forum.

Multi-location businesses are not eligible to merge with G+ Business pages yet and IMO you should not even think about trying yet. Seriously don't waste brain cells trying to figure it out or get ready for it until the product is more stable and well thought out and the upgrade paths is clear for multi-locations.

In fact top experts like Mike Blumenthal and myself and even Jade from Google recommend holding off right now on merging (verifying G+ Business pages) even for single locations that qualify. It's just still too BETA/buggy. See the Local Train Wreck post from last week for more info.

So I think for national chains/franchises right now, I'd have a brand G+ Business page, a Google+ Local page for each location, then hold off and wait until Google figures out how this is all going to work AND make sure it's all stable before moving forward.
 

drian

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Joined
Dec 2, 2012
Messages
10
Thanks Linda,
Let me just be sure we are on the same point.
We are in the UK, we have lots of clients that are 'local' in that they have an office/workshop/whatever and hence generate business locally. BUT, they have business that is generated nationwide across the UK.
Can I repeat the question for your thoughts?

"what is the best approach for listing your business in Google+? 2 Page Listings? One for the 'local' listing and one for the company?"

I understand the point you are making about merging from Places to Plus, but (for example) for a totally new listing?
 

Linda Buquet

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Jun 28, 2012
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14,440
So are you asking ONLY about the G+ Business page (with social features)?

Not about the G+ Local page that has the reviews and shows up in Google search and Google maps?
 

drian

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Dec 2, 2012
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Social aspects of Google + are at the moment irrelevant I believe. Too complicated and not used by the average person.

But a listing for your business with a Google+ Page is very important. You can have a number of Google+ Pages. Not just one.

"what is the best approach for listing one's business in Google+?
  • 2 Page Listings? One for the 'local' listing and one for the company?
  • One national 'brand' page?
  • One local listing page?"
 

Linda Buquet

Moderator
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Jun 28, 2012
Messages
14,440
Social aspects of Google + are at the moment irrelevant I believe. Too complicated and not used by the average person.
Ya I think there is confusion... (don't feel bad, everyone is confused and it's even hard for me to try to explain.)

The Google+ Business page (which can be a brand page or set up in local category) IS the social page. So if you don't care about social, you don't need that page yet. It does not show up in search or on maps or have reviews. So based on what you said above that's NOT the one you want.

The Google Place page/Google+ Local page is the one that has reviews and the one that ranks in the search engines. This is the one you want I think and it's ONLY available for each specific location, not for corporate.

Then there is the new ability to merge both pages into 1 page. BUT as I tried to explain, that part is not available yet for multi-location businesses. AND even if it was everyone is advising not doing it yet.

So back to what I said initially, I'd have a brand G+ Business page for corporate and a Google Place page/Google+ Local page for each location.
 
Joined
Dec 17, 2012
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The business can only have one Places entry driving a Google+ page at its office/unit location.

And there can only be one +Local Business page to match that Google+ page.

Overall there needs to be a +Profile page in an individuals name. A corporate email as it needs to be persistent.

If that person does not network then that could be done in a +Brand page managed by a professional.

You can start to network now from the +Profile page or the +Brand page, but not both. And you should not point to the +Local Business page, or only occasionally.

On the +Local Business page you can post articles of interest to customers. To get existing customers to visit you can do seasonal offers and so on. The aim is to get possible new customers to circle or follow the page so you can follow them back and then they will see your posts in their stream. The ultimate aim is to get old customers to interact with potential ones in a positive way.
 

drian

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Dec 2, 2012
Messages
10
The business can only have one Places entry driving a Google+ page at its office/unit location.
As I said earlier - "I have come across national retailers where they have a Page for each outlet and a Page for the main company."
 
Joined
Dec 17, 2012
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It does not mean it cannot be done. I suppose it would be more relevant for a SME with a few locations and who needs to compete on service rather than price.
 

drian

Member
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Dec 2, 2012
Messages
10
It does not mean it cannot be done. I suppose it would be more relevant for a SME with a few locations and who needs to compete on service rather than price.
I do not understand your point.
The big question is 'How does Google expect the Google+ Pages to be set up for businesses that have local AND national business markets. This might be a SME or a large multi-million ? national company.
 
Joined
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There are two sorts of pages at the moment available to you:

A Google+ Page which appears for a search and which is driven by a selection of data from the Places entry.

In the case you posit:
We are in the UK, we have lots of clients that are 'local' in that they have an office/workshop/whatever and hence generate business locally. BUT, they have business that is generated nationwide across the UK.
The Business Guidelines for a Places entry say you can only have one Places entry at the office or unit location.

In the case of a multi-national which has local shops, offices or service units then they can have a Places entry for the main office if they wish and its in the guidelines for walk in visitors and then one for each location which is open and staffed for the stated hours. If the locations are a service depot, like British Gas say, then they have to be set up as a Service Area business.

Then there are the new + social pages:
Note you can use the same name in several +Profiles as appropriate:
Personal
Business
Hobby or Social Club
But only post content as appropriate

A +Profile which has to be in an individuals name

A +Brand page which has to be under a +Profile where your blogger(s) or networking professional(s) can promote the brand. This should not post links to +Local Business pages to avoid spam take downs.

A +Local Business page for a location which has to be under a +Profile page, but this can be the local manager as a place holder.

In the case you posit this could be possible:

A +Profile or a +Brand page could be used to promote the business nationally.

As far as I know this is not prohibited:
You can set a +Profile up for a local manager and then set up a +Local Business page below it without having any local Places entry.
The manager can post from the +Local Business page information relevant to his local area and customers.
He can encourage customers to Circle the page from their +Profile if individuals or Follow it if they are businesses. And once they have done that you can Follow them back. A +Local Business page cannot Circle others like a +Profile so it cannot 'network'.

As part of Googles ham fisted dash to mobile phone waving socialites, the +social stuff is really aimed at drinkeries, eateries and enjoyeries which someone out on the town is likely to search for from their web enabled phone or tablet. Most Yell mobile searches are for eateries.
Obviously for social oriented businesses having a cohort of old customers commenting on your Posts and interacting with potential customers who have Circled/Followed the page is supposed to increase your business.
For real businesses like carpenters, electricians and plumbers I would think the time to embrace 'social' would not be a good return on investment.

Now there is the Communities option which may work for skill based activities where advising DIYers may garner business from the less dextrous, physically or mentally, based on your insightful comments.
I have set up in the UK:
Birmingham Blogs
Birmingham Websites
Birmingham Google+
having read a post by Linda here to see if that would work for me and my website guy. One join so far. Its a new feature so get in early and give it a go.

Some social engagement in the +world for all businesses is probably advisable for +es and reviews from users already with a +Profile.
But its probably like blogging, posting just once a month will not gain much traction.
 

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