How to Claim Your Dispensary Google My Business Page

Posted on November 29th, 2018 to GMB

The easiest thing you can do to help people find you, besides having us build your website (get your quote here) is to claim your Google My Business listing.  Google indexes all business listings, but it, of course, starts with them. If you’ve ever noticed that awesome sidebar that shows up when you Google a business, that’s we’re talking about – it’s easy to set up and will greatly impact your SEO.

Why Claim Your Business on Google?

Your Business Profile appears right when people are searching for your business or businesses like yours on Google Search and Maps. Google My Business makes it easy to create and update your Business Profile—so you can stand out, and bring customers in. The term, “dispensary near me” is searched over 1.2 million times per month, and claiming your business on Google gives you a great opportunity to take advantage of those searchers.

How to Claim Your GMB

Here’s what you need to activate your Google My Business:

  1. Go to google.com/business and click Start now at the top right corner.
  2. Sign in to your Google Account, or create one if you don’t already use Google services.
  3. Enter the name of your business and click Next.
    Note: You can also select your business from the suggestions that appear as you enter information.
  4. Enter the street address of your business and click Next. You may also be asked to position a marker for the location of your business on a map.
    • If you manage a service-area business, follow these extra steps:
      1. Check the box for I deliver goods and services to my customers. Optionally, check the box for Hide my address (it’s not a store) Only show region –.
      2. Click Next.
      3. Select a delivery area option and click Next.
  5. Use the search field to select a business category and click Next.
  6. Enter a phone number or website URL for your business, then click Next.
  7. To complete sign-up and verify your connection to this business, click Continue.
  8. Select a verification option:
    • To verify at another time, select Try a different method and click Later. If you’re not authorized to manage the business, find the person in your organization who’s authorized and continue the process.

Considerations for dispensaries on GMB

Here are a few best practices when it comes to setting up your dispensary’s Google My Business listing:

  • Make sure you have “cannabis store” as one of your business categories.
  • Avoid putting keywords like “recreational dispensary” directly in your business name.

“avoid putting keywords like ‘recreational dispensary’ directly in your business name” is especially important because we’ve been seeing other SEO agencies recommend this to clients. It’s important to note that adding keywords to your business name is actually against Google’s guidelines. Google states:

“Including unnecessary information in your business name is not permitted, and could result in your Business Profile being suspended. Refer to the specific examples below to determine what you can and can’t include in your business name:

  • Throughout the examples below, names or parts of names in italics would not be permitted. Your name must not include:
    • Marketing taglines.
      • Not acceptable: “TD Bank, America’s Most Convenient Bank”, “GNC Live Well*”.
      • Acceptable: “TD Bank”, “GNC”
    • Store codes.
      • Not acceptable: “The UPS Store – 2872”
      • Acceptable: “The UPS Store”
    • Trademark/registered signs.
      • Not acceptable: “Burger King®”
      • Acceptable: “Burger King”
    • Fully capitalized words (with the exception of acronyms) or unnecessary spaces.
      • Not acceptable: “SUBWAY”
      • Acceptable: “Subway”, “KFC”, “IHOP”, “JCPenney”
    • Business hours information, including closed/open status.
      • Not acceptable: “Regal Pizzeria Open 24 hours”, “Sears Outlet (Closed)”
      • Acceptable: “Regal Pizzeria”, “Sears Outlet”
    • Phone numbers or website URLs, unless they reflect your business’s consistently used and recognized real world representation.
      • Not acceptable: “Airport Direct 1-888-557-8953”, “webuyanycar.com”
      • Acceptable: “Airport Direct”, “1-800-Got-Junk”
    • Special characters (e.g. %&[email protected]/”) or irrelevant legal terms unless they are part of your business’s real world representation
      • Not Acceptable: “Shell [email protected]”, “Re/Max, LLC”, “LAZ Parking Ltd”
      • Acceptable: “Shell”, “Re/Max”, “LAZ Parking”, “Toys ’’R’’ Us”, “H&M”, “T.J.Maxx”
    • Service or product information about your business, unless this information is part of its real world representation or this information is needed to identify a department within a business (see “Departments“). Service information is best represented by categories (see “Categories“).
      • Not acceptable: “Verizon Wireless 4G LTE”, “Midas Auto Service Experts”
      • Acceptable: “Verizon Wireless”, “Midas”, “Best Buy Mobile”, “Advance Auto Parts”, “JCPenney Portrait Studios”
    • Location information, such as neighborhoodcity, or street name, unless it is part of your business’s consistently-used and recognized real-world representation. Your name must not include street address or direction information.
      • Not acceptable: “Holiday Inn (I-93 at Exit 2)”, “U.S. Bank ATM – 7th & Pike – Parking Garage Lobby near Elevator”, “Equinox near SOHO”
      • Acceptable: “Holiday Inn Salem”, “U.S. Bank ATM”, “Equinox SOHO”, “University of California Berkeley”
    • Containment information indicating that your business is located inside another business (whether or not the businesses are part of the same organization).
      • Not acceptable: “Chase ATM (in Duane Reade)”, “Apple Store at Stanford Shopping Center”, “Benefit Brow Bar – Bloomingdales”, “Sam’s Club Tire & Battery (part of Sam’s Club)”, “Geek Squad (inside Best Buy)”
      • Acceptable: “Chase ATM”, “Apple Store”, “Benefit Brow Bar”, “Sam’s Club Tire & Battery”, “Geek Squad” “

Read Next: 9 Ways to Optimize Your GMB

SEO Expert

This post was written by Zach Santarsiero, CMO at CannaPlanners.

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