Google Business listing, Google Business Page, Google+ account – what’s the difference?

There is some confusion about the difference between the different options at Google if you are a business. It seems like the information Google provides even contradicts itself at this point, but this might be because they are in the midst of an upgrade.

For example, I found this announcement:

Verified, upgraded locations now have socially-enabled Google+ pages. If you don’t see this feature yet, don’t worry! We’re working hard to upgrade all our users as soon as we can. (Your location on Google+, support.google.com)

Another page, says that:

To add your business information to Google, you’ll need to create a local Google+ page (or get access to one, if it already exists). (How to Add or Claim a Business, support.google.com)

I think the reality is that, however you add your business location, you will end up with a listing and a Google+ page.

Your Business Information on Google

Also, once you’ve verified your business information, updates you make to your local business may show up on Google Maps and elsewhere on Google. For example, your updated business contact information, description, photos, and business hours should show up in a Google search and on your Google+ page. If they don’t, make sure you do not have duplicate pages and also confirm your business is connected to Google Maps.

Here are some examples of how this information will look in different places in Google:

Google Search (Desktop)

Example Google Search

Google Search (Mobile)

Example Google Search Mobile

Google Map (Desktop)Example Google Map Desktop Listing

 

Are you a brand or a location?

Google describes the difference like this:

  • “Google+ brand pages don’t include address or other physical location information and are intended to help Brands, organizations, or artists can use Google My Business to get online and connect with customers and fans.”
  • “Google+ locations are for businesses that have a physical address and are open for business. If your business is under construction or online only, it is not eligible for a location listing. Check Google’s complete guidelines for Google+ business listings here.”

Brand Listing

If you have a brand listing, it will look like this:

Example of a Google Brand Listing

Location Listing

If you already have a business location listing it will look like this:

Full Serve Web google listing

Google Business Dashboard

If you click on ‘manage location’ you will see the dashboard. This is where managers or owners can edit business information. The dashboard looks like this:

Screen Shot 2016-01-27 at 7.04.43 AM

If you look below the area with basic business information (shown above), the dashboard has different sections:

  • Insights (views, clicks and new followers for your business on Google for the last 30 days)
  • Reviews
  • YouTube insights
  • Google+
  • Google Analytics

Find Your Google+ Business Page

If you click on the Google+ icon from the dashboard it will take you to your business on Google+. Note there is a dropdown at the top that allows you to choose your view of the page (you can view it as yourself or as the public).

Get to your Google+ page faster by clicking on the