Google has introduced a way for businesses to appear in local listings even before they open to the public.
Businesses that are opening in the near future can now create a Google My Business listing.
The listing will appear in Google search results 90 days before the before the opening date, giving businesses an opportunity to build an online presence and generate customer interest.
Businesses can also engage with customers via the Google My Business listing and answer any questions people may have before doors open.
Here is a quick walkthrough explaining how to set up a Google My Business listing for a soon-to-open business.
Creating a Google My Business listing with a future opening date
Step One: Claim Your Listing
The first step is to create a Google My Business listing by visiting google.com/business and following the prompts.
When setting up a listing for a soon-to-open business select “Verify later” when prompted to verify the business.
That step is most important because it will prevent a business from appearing as “open” before it actually opens.
Step Two: Set Opening Date
Set a future opening date by following the steps below:
- Sign in to Google My Business.
- Open the location you’d like to manage.
- From the menu, click Info.
- Find the “Opening date” section and click the pencil icon.
- Enter your opening date.
- Click Apply
Google only requires the year and month of a business’s opening date. Businesses can enter a date up to one year in the future.
Once the date has been set and the business has been verified, the Google My Business listing will start to appear in local search results 90 days before the opening date.
Step Three: Create Content
Businesses can start adding content to their Google My Business listing at the 90-day mark.
At that time businesses can publish posts, photos, and add a merchant description.
After the opening date the listing will be marked as “recently opened.”