You don’t need me to tell you that your dealership has a lot of moving parts – some of which may be separate departments, possibly with different physical locations. And while that may be simple for you, it’s imperative that your customers know any differences in Location, Hours, Phone Number and Services – or at least that they can find that information easily, when needed.
This is where Location Nesting comes in.
Google My Business gives you the option of displaying your departments as separate locations. While this is great for differentiating between say, your main Sales listing, and your Service listing it offers additional assistance, as well. When someone clicks on one of your listings, the information for all of your departments is right there for them, a literal click away.
So, let’s talk about the best ways to get this done.
Step 1: Identification
Before you do anything, you need to ask yourself “What parts of my dealership should be verified as Google My Business Departments”? Now, every dealership is different. The needs of your dealership may differ drastically from those of your competitors. But here’s a PRO-TIP: if you have any of THESE departments at your dealership – we’d recommend getting them verified.
- Sales (Main)
- Collision/Body Shop
- In-House Insurance
- Commercial Truck
- Public Car Wash
That said, you should look at YOUR business with a critical eye to determine if there are any other departments that merit their own nested GMB listing.
When it comes to GMB, there are a few things you really want to make sure you look out for: like duplicate listings. Ask yourself, “Did someone at your dealership create a location for this department at some point in the past? Perhaps Google did! Either way, duplicate listings will get flagged by Google and deleted, giving you little control over the process. So make sure you confirm which departments need to be CREATED, and which need to be CLAIMED.
You also want to avoid any unnecessary clutter – like individual salespeople creating listings for their own services within the dealership.
Salespeople branding themselves on social media? Good.
Salespeople confusing Google about your dealership’s listings? Bad.
Which brings us to….
Step 2: Verification
Verification of Google My Business listings is relatively simple, but there are a few ways to do it. Again, you need to know whether the department listing in question is being created or claimed.
Creating a Department
When you are creating a Google My Business profile you’re going to want to navigate to business.google.com. Select “Add a Business”. Fill out all of the information for the specific department. Select your verification method.
This is almost always a physical postcard that Google will send to your dealership address. It contains a 5-digit PIN that you use to verify that location, and arrives in less than a week, generally.
Sometimes Google will offer a Phone Verification. This will have an automated system call the phone number you submitted with a 5-digit PIN. Be aware that Google will have trouble getting through any sort of automatic phone menu, and you may need to either deactivate that, or revert to postcards.But what is a listing has already been created?
Claiming a Department
This is the method you’ll use if the department you’re trying to nest already exists in Google My Business and Google Maps. You’d simply navigate to the department on Google Maps, and click “Claim this business”. Depending on when it was last managed, one of two things can happen.
1. You simply verify it, using the methods above.
2. Someone has been managing the location recently. This means Google will send an email to the last user that owned the location. That user can either confirm or deny you access, but if they don’t respond for 3 days, Google will allow you to verify normally.
Contested access by an unknown source can be tricky to deal with, and will involve you opening up a ticket with Google Support.
So let’s recap:
- Identify which of your Department Listings should have their own unique listing.
- Determine which of these listings need to be created from scratch, and which need to be claimed, and
- Verify each accordingly.
Now that you have an understanding of WHY nested department listings are important, and HOW to set them up, be sure and join me NEXT Thursday, where I’m going to cover ADDITIONAL ways you can optimize your nested listings to deliver the best results.