How to Hit the Ground Running When Moving Your Business
May 19, 2019
Many of you may not know that Hyperchat Social is moving! Yep, that's right, we are leaving our old building behind and moving into a new one this summer! Don't worry, we're not leaving Alpharetta - we're simply moving right down the street to a bigger building. If you've kept up with our blog posts over the past several months, you know that Hyperchat Social has been growing quite significantly this past year. We have nearly doubled in size in less than a year, growing from 5 employees in May of 2018 to 9 presently. Naturally, we need more space to make room for continued growth! Of course, we are super excited to see what all the future has for our business.
Although we are simply moving right down the street, we have to make sure our current and potential clients still know how to find us. How do we do make sure our business doesn't lose ground in the process? Thankfully, we've done this before and we know what to do.
And that's why we know how important it is to make sure the moving process goes smoothly. Do you know what to do when your business moves locations? Do you know how to ensure you don't miss a beat during the process of moving? If you aren't sure, don't worry. We've got some helpful tips for you - just keep reading!
Tip #1: Don't forget your Business NAP
Moving from one building to another can be an exhausting job, and you're going to be tired. Make sure to get in a little R&R so as not to wear yourself out!
Just kidding. Although taking care of yourself is important, that's not what we're talking about here.
When we say NAP, we don't mean a midday siesta. NAP is an acronym for your business' name, address, and phone number, a.k.a. your business' footprint. Although your new business location might very likely be only a few steps away, that doesn't mean your clients will be able to find you easily when your phone number and address changes.
The most important place that your NAP is used is on Google. If your business has succeeded in making the front page of Google, you want to do everything in your power to make sure it stays on that front page!
In order to ensure your NAP is properly changed on Google, you will need to update your Google My Business listing. Don't have one? No worries, because we know how you can get one! If you already have a Google My Business listing, you can skip down to the section about how to update your current listing.
How to Create Your Google My Business Listing
We can't stress enough how important it is that your business shows up on Google properly. Everyone uses Google to find out what they need to know. Most importantly for you as a business owner, when people make a local search such as "hair salon near me," half of them are going to get a haircut that very same day. If a hair salon's listing on Google is incorrect in any way, the person looking for a great place to get their hair cut is not going to choose that salon. It's never a good sign when a potential customer calls an incorrect number only to find an empty dial tone. Therefore, it's crucial that your business' information on your Google listing be flawless. and up-to-date. Here's how to create an effective Google My Business listing.
Step 1: Log into the Google Account that you want to associate with your business. If you don't have a Google Account, then your first step is to create one. For instructions on how to do that, click here.
Step 2: Go to google.com/business and click on "manage now" in the top right corner.
Step 3: Follow the prompts and fill out the requested information (Business name, address, delivery area). If you don't want your address shown because you work out of your home, you can choose the option to hide your address.
Step 4: After you've filled out everything from your business name to your website, you will be asked to choose a verification method. You can verify your email in several ways: postcard, phone, email, instant verification, or bulk verification. Directions at this point vary greatly depending on which verification method you choose. For further direction, click here.
Updating Your Google My Business Listing
When it comes to updating your listing information, the process is pretty straightforward, especially if you are already familiar with Google My Business. We recommend making these updates BEFORE you actually move. By making the updates beforehand, you can promote your new location and provide an opening date. Your customers/clients will greatly appreciate the heads up.
Once these updates have been made, your NAP should be good to go! At least, it will be for Google. While Google is the main channel that uses your NAP, it isn't the only one. You NAP is everywhere and it can be a challenge to update it thoroughly. That's where your NAP audit tracking spreadsheet comes in.
Creating Your NAP Audit Tracking Spreadsheet
My what? We know, things are getting a little technological here. But really the process is more simple than you think! This tracking spreadsheet is simply just how you keep track of all the places that your business could reflect its NAP. You'll want to open up your favorite program for making lists and staying organized - whether that's Excel, Google Sheets, Word, etc.
Start formatting your document/spreadsheet with four columns: URLs, NAP data, logins, and notes. The notes section is for recording what kind of search query brought this page to your attention.
The Sections of Your Spreadsheet
In the URL section, list out all the places that you have a business listing. This could be Angie's List, Yelp, etc. As you go through the list, visit these listings and see if any are incorrect. Don't change them just yet, but use the notes section in your spreadsheet to record any inconsistencies or errors that you come across. You will come back to these. For the login section, simply record what your username and password are for each business listing. This will be very helpful later when you go back to update each listing.
Search For Your Business
Once you have completed your list of business listings, you will want to make multiple Google searches with the inconsistent information you found earlier. These search queries should include old phone numbers or incorrect addresses. With each search, make note of the webpages that rank on the first page of Google, especially the ones that pop up at the top of the results listed. Remember, the first page of Google is so important, because the top results are where Google is pulling the majority of its information from.
For each incorrect search result that pops up for your business, click through to the page and manually edit the information and make it correct. Don't forget to check the bottom of the page in the copyright section! Some data sources will pull information from an incorrect source, resulting in inconsistent information in the copyright of your page. Take note in your tracking spreadsheet of which data source is pulling this incorrect information and go to it directly to update your NAP. Updating this one data source will help to hit multiple birds with one stone, as this update will also reflect across other data source apps like Foursquare and Apple Maps., for example.
You will also want to check Google Maps, as many local shoppers are looking for nearby businesses through Maps, too.
Once you have completed your tracking spreadsheet you are ready to update your NAP. Keep in mind that you aren't creating brand new listings, that will just duplicate your information. You want to edit your old listings, using the login credentials mentioned before. Once you have updated all of your business listings, then your NAP is all set!
Tip#2: Update Your Social Media Contact Info
Another area where you will want to update your contact info is your Social Media pages. While many people use Google to search for businesses, there are also many tech-savvy Millennials who use social media as well. Don't discount the Millennials here. They have a huge buying power right now and are making a significant impact on the current economy - you want their business!
Make sure to visit each social platform you post to - Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. and update all contact information.
Tip #3: Post about Your Business' Move on Social Media!
Equally as important as changing your contact information on social media is posting about your big move! Your followers love to see the personal side of your business. Buyers connect more with a business when it shows its personal side on social media. Sharing about events happening in your business - like making a big move - is a great way to be transparent with your audience. Not only will your audience engage with this kind of content, but they will also appreciate being kept in the loop (like we mentioned before with posting an opening date on your Google My Business account).
Once you've done all three steps, your business is officially ready to move! By completing these key steps, your business won't miss a beat when making its big move. Hyperchat Social is super excited to make our big move this summer, and we can't wait to tell you all about it! If you'd like to connect more with us, contact us today to see how we can help you turn social into sales!
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