How to create a Google Business Profile for your restaurant: a step-by-step guide
November 11, 2021
So you want to create a Google Business Profile for your restaurant but don’t know where to start. In the following guide, we’ll break down the simple steps for getting your business to show up on Google Search and Google Maps, along with the top features you should be using to optimize your restaurant’s listing. The best part? Setting up your Google Business Profile takes a few minutes and allows you to reach millions of Google users at no cost.
What’s a Google Business Profile?
Formerly known as Google My Business, Google Business Profile is a free tool that allows you to manage how your restaurant looks when someone searches for it on Google or Google Maps. Once you create or claim your restaurant’s Business Profile, you will be able to personalize it with contact information, descriptions, operating hours, photos, offers, and more. You can even let customers make reservations and order food online directly from your listing.
Last week Google announced that “Google My Business” was renamed the more straightforward “Google Business Profile.” The goal is to allow users to manage their profiles directly on Search and Maps, apps that are common for business and restaurant owners, instead of using the Google My Business app, which will be retired in 2022. Here’s all you need to know about the new Google Business Profile and how to create an account for your restaurant.
Why should your restaurant have a Google Business Profile?
Think about this: if someone searched for your restaurant on Google right now, what would they find? Google accounts for 78% of desktop search traffic globally and even more on mobile, so you need to make sure that potential customers can find you there.
We can break it down into 3 main benefits:
- Manage your restaurant’s listing. Creating a Business Profile for your restaurant allows you to control the information displayed on Google Search and Google Maps like your address, opening hours, phone number, ordering options, and more.
- Interact with customers. With features like sharing updates, responding to reviews, and adding pictures, you will be able to connect with your customers in new ways.
- Put your restaurant on the map (literally). Google results are optimized to help users find nearby businesses, so having a Google Business Profile for your restaurant will help people find you. Plus, you can even accept reservations and online orders from your profile, converting searchers into customers immediately.
In the end, it’s a matter of credibility. Customers are twice as likely to consider a business reputable and 70% more likely to visit if it has a complete profile on Google Search and Maps.
How to create or claim your restaurant’s Google Business Profile
1. Go to the Google Business Profile website and click on “Sign in.” You’ll be asked to sign in to your email account. If you have one, make sure to use your business email.
2. Type your business name. If it appears on the drop-down menu, you’ll be able to claim the listing. If it doesn’t appear, click on “Add your Business to Google.”
3. Enter your business name and choose a business category. You’ll see options like “restaurant,” "vegan restaurant,” “fast food restaurant,” and so on.
4. Add your restaurant’s location. This will allow your restaurant to show up on Google Maps. If you have a physical location, add your exact address. If you run a delivery-only restaurant, you can skip this and add your service area.
5. Add your contact information. Type your restaurant’s contact information: phone number and website. If you don’t have a website, you can add a link to your restaurant’s Facebook or Instagram page.
6. State if you’d like to receive updates and recommendations for your Google Business profile.
7. Verify your business. In order to update your restaurant’s listing, you need to prove to Google that it’s actually yours. By default, Google will send you a postcard with a code to your restaurant’s address. Most postcards arrive within 14 days.
That’s it! Once you get your postcard in the mail, you’ll be able to submit your code and claim the listing as yours. You can also find other ways to verify your business here.
Top Google Business Profile features for restaurants
Once you create and verify your restaurant’s Google Business Profile, it’s time for the fun part: customizing it as much as possible. Besides the general information like address, opening hours, phone number, and website, Google offers useful features to optimize your restaurant’s listing. Here are the top ones you should be taking advantage of.
Make sure to add a description to show what your restaurant is all about. Descriptions are displayed near the top of your business listing, so this is your chance to draw potential customers in. Write about what you offer, your restaurant’s story, and what sets it apart.
Attributes are labels that allow you to show the services that you offer (“Dine-in,” “Delivery”). You can also use attributes to show the health measures in place at your restaurant (“Mask required”). This feature is great to show details about your business. Plus, it allows your restaurant to show up in search results when people look for places with specific attributes.
Studying a restaurant’s menu before going or placing an order has become a common practice. Google Business Profile allows you to add a photo of your menu or enter specific menu items to display your top dishes. You can add menu item names, descriptions and even list their prices.
Did you know that Google allows you to accept online food orders directly from your profile? You can either set up an “Order online” button connected to your food delivery platforms or add a custom order link. At Otter, we integrate with 100+ partners that help restaurants increase sales, orders, and efficiency (including Google!).
Online reviews are an essential component of running a successful restaurant. Customers will be able to leave a review for your restaurant on your Google Business Profile. Make sure to use this feature to learn more about their thoughts and respond to every review, positive or negative. You can download 10 review response templates for your restaurant here.
On delivery platforms, restaurants that get the most orders are the ones that have one photo per item. Make sure to upload photos and videos of your restaurant to your Google Business Profile to attract new customers. You’ll also be able to add your restaurant’s logo and choose a cover photo to display on your listing for Google Search and Google Maps.
Get more tips, increase sales and avoid delivery headaches by signing up for Otter
If you’re reading this, you clearly are an entrepreneur ready to take your restaurant to the next level. Have you considered partnering with Otter — a delivery management tool that partners with restaurants around the globe to deliver better? From giving tips on how to navigate the recent conglomeration of delivery & technology, to eliminating the need for multiple tablets, to running automated promotions, analytics, and more, we’re here to make your lives easier. If you’re interested in partnering with Otter or learning more, fill out the form below.