A Google Street View | Trusted Photographer * Trained & Certified by Google Since Early 2012

Aimees 360 Photo Texas Tech

Reach Us By Phone

Call David at 469-682-7261
David introduces this awesome program to our business community. 

 

Google Blogs

Introducing YouTube Director: A Suite of Video Ad Creation Products for Businesses

Google and Your Business - Wed, 06/15/2016 - 15:00
Whether it’s for entertainment, indulging a passion, or discovering something new, more people are turning to YouTube to watch video. In fact, growth in watch time on YouTube is up at least 50% year-over-year.1 Now, more than ever, businesses can connect with their customers through video advertising on YouTube.

But we know that creating a video ad can be challenging. To make it easier for every business—from a dog walker to a barber shop owner—to get started with advertising on YouTube, we’re launching the YouTube Director suite of products. Three products that make video ads more accessible to businesses.

Make a video ad right from your phone

With the free YouTube Director for business app (available for iPhone today in the U.S. and Canada) anyone can create a video ad for their business quickly and easily—right from their phone. No editing experience required. People like Woody Lovell Jr., owner of the The Barber Shop Club in Los Angeles, are already seeing positive results with YouTube Director.

Woody shot and edited a video ad by himself, uploaded it to YouTube, and worked with an AdWords expert to run a campaign. As a result, Woody’s business saw a significant increase in potential customers being able to remember and recognize his ad.2

We challenged five business owners—including Woody—to create a video ad in twenty minutes or less. Watch what happened and download the app to give it a try.


Get a professional to make your video ad

In select U.S. cities, we’re also offering YouTube Director onsite, a service that sends a professional filmmaker to shoot and edit a video ad for free whenever a business spends at least $150 to advertise on YouTube. YouTube Director onsite is available in Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Washington D.C.—and coming to more cities soon.

Is your business an app? We can create a video ad for you too


YouTube Director automated video creates a video ad automatically from existing assets like logos and app screenshots in the App Store or Google Play Store, and is available globally. Reach out to a Google expert (1-855-500-2756) for more information.

No matter what kind of business you’re in, getting started with advertising on YouTube just became a whole lot easier. We can’t wait to see what you make. Happy filming.

Max Goldman, Product Manager, YouTube Director, recently watched "YouTube Director Video Challenge."

This post originally appeared on the YouTube Blog.

1. Google Data, 2016
2. Woody’s YouTube Director video ad for The Barber Shop Club drove a 73% increase in ad recall among target customers on YouTube, and a 56% lift in brand awareness (AdWords Brand Lift Study, June 2016)

Test your site with Google and see how it works across devices

Google and Your Business - Thu, 06/02/2016 - 16:00
Did you know that nine out of ten people will leave a mobile website if they can’t find what they’re looking for right away?1 Now, think about your business’s site. Does it perform quickly on both laptops and smartphones? If not, you’re probably losing customers while the pages slowly load. But if you’re not sure how to make it run more smoothly, don’t worry – we’re here to help.

Today we’re introducing an easy way to measure your site’s performance across devices—from mobile to desktop—and give you a list of specific fixes that can help your business connect more quickly with people online.

You don’t need a lot of technical knowledge to understand your site’s performance. Just type in your web address and within moments you’ll see how your site scores. You can also get a detailed report to give you an idea of what to do next, and where to go for help at no charge. We recommend sharing it with your webmaster to help you plan your next steps and implement our suggested fixes.

Why you should test your site

Your customers live online. When they need information or want to find a nearby store or product, they grab the nearest device. On average, people check their phones more than 150 times a day,2 and more searches occur on mobile phones than computers.3 But if a potential customer is on a phone, and a site isn’t easy to use, they’re five times more likely to leave.4

To avoid losing out in these crucial moments, you need a site that loads quickly and is easy to use on mobile screens. The first step is seeing how your site is performing. We can help by scoring your site for mobile-friendliness, mobile speed, and desktop speed. Plus, it’s easy to share these scores. (By the way, if you’re a site guru, you may also want to visit PageSpeed Insights, which is the power behind the scores.)

What your scores say about your site

Mobile-friendliness: This is the quality of the experience customers have when they’re browsing your site on their phones. To be mobile-friendly, your site should have tappable buttons, be easy to navigate from a small screen, and have the most important information up front and center.

  • Mobile speed: This is how long it takes your site to load on mobile devices. If customers are kept waiting for too long, they’ll move on to the next site.
  • Desktop speed: This is how long it takes your site to load on desktop computers. It’s not just the strength of your customers’ web connection that determines speed, but also the elements of your website.

Test your site and find out what’s working, what’s not, and which fixes to consider.

The world’s gone mobile. Now, it’s your turn.


Posted by Yong Su Kim, VP SMB Sales Americas

1. Consumers in the Micro-Moment, Wave 3, Google/Ipsos, U.S., August 2015, n=1291 online smartphone users 18+
2. Kleiner Perkins Caufield Byers, “Internet Trends D11 Conference.” May 2013
3. Google internal data, for 10 countries including the U.S. and Japan, April 2015
4. Google, Sterling Research and SmithGeiger, “What Users Want Most From Mobile Sites Today.” July 2012

Businesses are Growing Online with Google

Google and Your Business - Thu, 05/26/2016 - 19:23
“What do you want to be when you grow up?” This may have been a question you were asked regularly as a child. Today it seems as if any interest can become a career, thanks in part to the reach and accessibility of the web. From outdoor adventure guides and quilters, to toymakers and bowtie designers, at Google, we feel lucky to play a small role in how many people turned their passions into professions.

Last year, Google’s search and advertising tools helped provide $165 billion of economic activity for U.S. businesses—advertisers, publishers and nonprofits. Businesses are using the web to find new customers, connect with existing ones, and grow.

For example, Kathryn Jackson spent many years as a sales associate at a luxury department store. During that time she observed how quickly her clients had to re-sole their expensive shoes. She was inspired to create Protect Your Pumps, shoe sole protectors that help shoes last longer. Within two years, she turned her idea into a full time career. Today 40% of her sales come from Google Search. She’s expanded her product line to include shoe protectors for flats and men’s shoes, and has shipped products to more than 80 countries.
Michael Salvatore loves coffee and bicycles. Michael discovered many other people in his native Chicago shared those same interests. In 2011, he founded Heritage Bicycles, creating a space that offers delicious coffee and bicycles uniquely designed and manufactured in Chicago. Michael used the web and geo-targeted Google AdWords campaigns to build his brand and get local customers into his stores. He also created global campaigns in AdWords to encourage customers from around the world to visit his e-commerce store. Today, Michael has two stores in Chicago, 23 employees, a global customer fan base, and plans to expand to more locations this year.
These are just two examples of businesses using the web and Google products to grow their businesses.You can find more stories and explore Google’s economic impact state-by-state in our Economic Impact Report. Across the U.S., business owners are using the web and Google to grow their companies, operate more efficiently, and turn their dreams into reality. We’re proud to play a role in their success and are committed to building tools and programs to help them reach their goals.

Posted by Claire Mudd, Head of SMB Marketing

4 Things Small Businesses Should Know in A Mobile-First World

Google and Your Business - Wed, 05/25/2016 - 16:43
At the Google Performance Summit, we announced several new trends and product innovations that highlight mobile opportunities for advertisers. Here are the main takeaways for small businesses looking to make the most of the new mobile world:

1. Every year, there are trillions of searches on Google and over half of those searches happen on mobile.

More searches happen on mobile than on desktop computers – which is no surprise when we think about our own behavior as consumers. Throughout the day, whenever we want to buy, learn or go, we turn to our phones first.

2. Mobile is local. Nearly one third of all mobile searches are related to location, and that number is growing.

Whether they’re researching pizza delivery on Friday night or trying to find an orthodontist near their pre-teen’s middle school, consumers are using mobile to direct their actions in the local world. Thirty-two percent of consumers say that location-based search ads have led them to visit a store or make a purchase1. For small business serving customers in their area, mobile ads can offer a vital opportunity to connect with customers.

3. New local search ads help businesses bring customers right to their door.

As we announced at the Google Performance Summit, businesses using location extensions in AdWords can prominently display their business location when consumers search for things like “dentist” or “car repair shop near me” while on-the-go.

We’re also testing new local ad formats that make it easier for users to find businesses as they navigate on Google Maps. Consumers may start seeing experiments like promoted pins that allow businesses to strengthen their brand presence in maps.


4. AdWords is designed to help you succeed in a mobile-first world.

We also introduced innovations in both text and display ads to help AdWords work harder for you on smartphone screens. Look for these upgrades coming soon:

  • New expanded text ads in AdWords provide extra ad space so you can showcase more information about your products and services before the click. The key changes include more prominent headlines and a longer description line in your text ad.
  • Responsive ads for display will adapt to the diverse content, shapes and sizes of the more than two million publisher sites and apps on the Google Display Network. Just provide headlines, a description, an image, and a URL, and AdWords will create beautiful ads for you that looks good on every device and site.


To learn more about other exciting ads and analytics innovations announced at the Google Performance Summit, watch the livestream keynote here.

Posted by Soo Young Kim, Head of Marketing, Get Your Business Online

1. Google/Ipsos MediaCT/Purchased, Research: Understanding Consumers’ Local Search Behavior, May 2014

From Workshops to the Web: Small Business Week Lessons For Your Business

Google and Your Business - Thu, 05/12/2016 - 17:56
‘I love the idea of somebody Googling “Magnolia Abbey,” and being able to see my shop, and the interior, and know exactly where I am if they are local or coming through town,’ said Julianne Wall owner of Magnolia Abbey in Huntsville, AL. This National Small Business Week, Julianne was one of the many small business owners able to get her business on Google Search and Maps.

In celebration of National Small Business Week, Google and its local partner organizations hosted 888 free workshops helping 15,000 businesses from San Rafael, CA to Memphis, TN to Jersey City, NJ. Business owners learned about the benefits of adding photos to their listing, the changing landscape of mobile consumer behavior and how advertising online with Google can help them find new customers.
Last week, Google Agency Partners educated businesses about user trends and “The 10 Ways to Grow Your Business Online.” This interactive workshop was just one example of the hundreds held across the country for National Small Business Week.
National Small Business Week might be over, but there’s still an opportunity for businesses to attend workshops and access resources online. Google's Let’s Put Our Cities on the Map program works all year long to strengthen our communities by connecting businesses directly with local experts. Over 3,000 local partners host workshops and help businesses throughout the year to help them grow their business online. We also recently introduced online workshops so businesses can choose the lesson that’s right for them - whether it’s to learn how to get found on Google Search and Maps, get a custom email address, or promote their business with AdWords Express.

Google and our partners are #AllforSmallBiz and continuously support businesses in local communities, so it’s never too late to get your business online. Learn more at gybo.com/workshops.

Track what matters to you easily in AdWords Express

Google and Your Business - Mon, 05/09/2016 - 17:45
If you own a small business, a visit to your website is only the first step to getting more customers. Whether they subscribe to your newsletter, make an online purchase, or click to email you directly, the next step a customer takes on your website is an important indicator of how you’re doing online. However, setting up tracking for the things you care about can be complex, especially for business owners with little time to spare.

That’s why we’ve introduced a new feature for tracking these goals in AdWords Express. AdWords Express advertisers can now access the power of Google Analytics right from their campaign dashboard. Connect a current Analytics account or set up a new one in minutes right from the AdWords Express dashboard. Once you set the goals for your website, you’ll be able to see how customers who click on your ad go on to interact with your website.
Analytics will show you how your ad is contributing to the website goals that matter to youGoogle Analytics has been an invaluable resource for small business owners looking to understand these key interactions. For Carrie Sullivan, co-owner of Telaya Wine Co. in Idaho, understanding how visitors interact with her website has been key to her company’s success online. “Being a small business, we wear many different hats and we have a small staff, so we don’t have someone to just focus on our website. Google Analytics does that for us.”
With the introduction of this feature, we’re excited to bring all these benefits to AdWords Express advertisers. Take your performance to the next level by understanding how your online spending impacts the website goals you care about at google.com/adwords/express, or visit our help center to learn more.

Posted by Zhouzhou He, AdWords Express Product Manager

Mother Knows Best: Small Business Lessons from Mom

Google and Your Business - Fri, 05/06/2016 - 17:48
There are 9.9M women-owned businesses in the US (Small Business Administration) and many of those businesses are run by moms. To celebrate Mother’s Day, we want to recognize the impact moms have on all types of small businesses. We reached out to the Google Small Business Advisors, our team of small business owners and experts, to share the business (and life) lessons they learned from their moms. Here’s what they had to say:
How has your mom impacted your small business? Share your thoughts and stories with us in the Google Small Business Community or on Twitter.

We’re #AllForSmallBiz This National Small Business Week

Google and Your Business - Thu, 04/21/2016 - 16:30
We’ve all been there: It’s Taco Tuesday and you promised to bring that new smoky hot sauce everyone’s talking about, but you have no idea where to find it. Ten years ago, you would have had to drive home and search for a store on your desktop computer or call a friend for help. Today, you can solve the problem just by grabbing your phone and saying “OK Google…”

As a result, you shop differently now, and so do your customers. Most people research online before buying anything – and 93% of people who search on their phone go on to make a purchase.1 As a small business owner, you want your customers to be able to find you, so you need to be there during the moments when they’re looking for something you have to offer. And we’re here to help. During National Small Business Week (May 1-7), Google is excited to help every business get online and every community show they’re #AllForSmallBiz. We’re partnering with organizations all over the country – from Alaska to Iowa to Puerto Rico – to host hundreds of workshops to help you learn how to get your business online and you’re invited: google.com/smallbusinessweek.



In these local workshops, we’ll show you how you can reach your customers in those important moments. You’ll learn how to update your information on Google Search and Maps, build a no-charge mobile-optimized website and more, so that you can connect with people no matter where they are or on which device they’re searching.



Can’t make a workshop in person? Starting May 1, Google will offer a collection of online resources to help small business owners learn how to get on the web and in front of customers who are searching online and on the go.

The time is now. Consumer behavior is changing quickly, but more than half of all small businesses don’t have a website.2 Join us and learn how to get your business online so that you can be found when customers are searching and shopping – no matter what device they use. Sign up for a workshop at google.com/smallbusinessweek. From our team to yours, Happy Small Business Week!

Claire Mudd, Head of Americas SMB Marketing

1. Google/Nielsen, "Mobile Path to Purchase" study, November 2013
2. Google/Ipsos, "Survey of businesses with under 250 employees", October 2013

An Expansion Update on Home Service Ads

Google and Your Business - Fri, 04/15/2016 - 16:00
The unexpected pipe leak, the key locked inside, the mess after a big housewarming, we've all been there. It's in these moments that people need quick and reliable help from someone they trust. If you’re a home services business owner, then people are turning to Google everyday to find professionals like you: plumbers, locksmiths, home cleaners and more.
Last year we introduced a new way for small businesses in the San Francisco Bay Area to offer home service solutions on Google. So far, thousands of people in the region have connected with qualified business owners through the format.
In San Jose, Ishmael Chandler's local plumbing service is growing quickly after using Home Service Ads for less than one year. "Home Service Ads have really helped us grow our business - since starting, we've seen a 20-30% increase in our overall business. As the program has grown throughout the year, we've seen better and better returns," he said.
We want to offer business owners like Ishmael the chance to connect with potential customers on Google, and that’s why we’re actively preparing to expand the availability of the experience to residents and business owners in Sacramento, California. In addition to the four types of services we’ve added in the past year -- plumbers, locksmiths, home cleaners and plumbers -- we’re also introducing two more highly requested categories of providers: HVAC services and electricians.
If you serve residents of Sacramento, visit google.com/homeserviceads to learn more about how we can help you reach more customers. We'll see you there!

Warm Up to Video this Holiday Season with YouTube

Google and Your Business - Thu, 12/17/2015 - 16:00
With the holiday season in full swing, more people than ever are turning to YouTube to help them shop. In fact, the number of people who go to YouTube is up more than three times year over year1. However unlike TV, YouTube isn’t just a place for brands with primetime budgets to connect with consumers. It has become a powerful tool for small and medium businesses which actually make up the majority of the video advertisers on YouTube. Over the last two years, the number of these advertisers has doubled.2
Small businesses like Cosatto, Ole Smoky Moonshine, and Homer Simpson’s Mr. Plow are using YouTube to connect with potential customers and make the most of the busy holiday season. Here are some tips for advertising on YouTube to help you get started.
1. Get mobile with YouTube

    More than 50% of YouTube’s video views happen on smartphones and tablets.3 In fact, YouTube videos on mobile alone reach more U.S. viewers ages 18 to 34 than any cable network.4 Businesses are realizing they can reach those customers with relevant video ads, when and where it matters. For instance, Cosatto, an online retailer specializing in high-quality strollers, baby travel systems and car seats, uses YouTube ads to connect with people researching baby products on their mobile devices.
    54% of all holiday shoppers say they plan to shop on their smartphones in spare moments throughout the day, like when they’re walking or commuting.5 To capture that attention, think of where your ideal customers live, where they go and what they watch. Use that information to tailor your video ads to the people who share your interests and live nearby. For Cosatto, half of all their video views come from people watching on mobile devices.



    2. Build your brand with video  
    People go to YouTube for all things do-it-yourself – searches relating to "how to" on YouTube have grown 70% year over year.6 So if someone searches for “how to make a holiday cocktail” and your company sells those ingredients, your video ad can show up in that moment. Ole Smoky Moonshine, a corn whiskey distillery from Tennessee, wanted to position itself as a great addition to specialty beverages for holiday parties. To raise brand awareness ahead of the holiday season, the company partnered with their agency VaynerMedia to introduce the “C’mon Live a Little” tagline among their key audience of 21-to-34-year-olds in zip codes near their distilleries. The campaign featured a series of short TrueView video ads which drove a 22% increase in brand awareness and 1,115% increase in related keyword searches.

    To stand out, include your business logo, a link to your website (or phone number) and a strong call-to-action in your video ad. Having a memorable ‘hook’ at the start of the ad can also capture people’s attention, lead to more views and increase the chances they’ll search for your business afterwards.

    3. Get meaningful metrics

    You want to know when your advertising is working, and YouTube analytics lets you keep an eye on the metrics that matter most – including how long people watch, how many viewers visit your site, and how many people share, like and comment on your ad. With YouTube’s TrueView video ads you only get charged when someone chooses to watch your ad, so every view you get is deliberate and can be measured. For example, Mr. Plow is a snowplow business in Springfield owned by Homer Simpson. In our new ad spot, he uses TrueView video ads to showcase his snowplowing capabilities to neighbors watching videos online throughout the busy winter season. Video advertisers like Homer can see how people are engaging with his video ad and use this information to make small but important changes to their campaigns. Are people not finishing your video ad? Consider shortening it. Is your view rate lower than you’d like? Potentially make the first five seconds more interesting.

    We hope you can use these tips to creatively showcase your business on YouTube this holiday season and beyond. You can learn more here, and best wishes as you wrap up the holiday season.

    Posted by Claire Mudd, Head of Americas SMB Marketing
    1. Google earnings call, Jul. 20152. Google data, Q4 2013 - Q4 20153. Google earnings call, Jul. 20154. Google-commissioned Nielsen study, Dec. 2013 - Feb. 2015
    5. Holiday Shopping Trends 2015: 3 Predictions for Retailers, Nov. 2015
    6. Google data, U.S., Q1 2014-Q1 2015

    Answers to Common Questions About New Domain Name Endings

    Google and Your Business - Thu, 12/10/2015 - 18:00
    Creating a website or getting a custom email address with Google Domains starts with a search for a domain name. With hundreds of new domain name endings like .guru, .company, and .fitness, you have more choice than ever before to find a meaningful and memorable name for your business as you tell the world who you are and what you do. As you begin to explore these new domain name endings, we wanted to provide answers to some frequently asked questions:

    Will these new domain name endings affect my website’s search ranking?No. The Webmaster Central blog recently addressed this question and more to make it clear that new domain name endings are not treated any differently than traditional domain name endings like .com or .org. Domain names with new endings are shown in search just like any other domain name. For example, if you search for the business Coffee Club, you will find their URL coffee.club.



    If I move my website to a new domain name ending, will my customers still be able to find my site on Google?Yes, of course! Whenever you move your site to a new domain name, whether it ends in a .com, .company, or something else, it’s important to follow the four steps outlined here to make sure Google is properly aware of your new site. Please be aware that it takes time to be fully processed in Google Search, but once it is, your new domain name is expected to work just like your old domain name. If you are still having issues, we encourage you to visit the Webmaster help forum.

    What are some reasons to use new domain name endings?
    • Brand identity: New domain name endings like .photography and .accountant help businesses tell the world who they are and what they do. For example, check out innovation.tools, nufsed.consulting and ordering.supplies.
    • Brand protection: Other businesses may buy domain names with new endings like .company, .solutions, or .international for their diverse business needs, or so that no one else can buy them. In many cases, businesses direct these new domain names back to their main website.
    • Promotions: There are also businesses who have used new domain name endings for marketing and promotional purposes. A company with a social media contest, for example, might create a contest website with a .social ending that would only be used for the duration of the contest. A good example of a current promotional domain is thehungergames.movie which highlights the latest movie in the series.
    If I purchase a new domain name, do I have to give up my old one?Of course not! Your old domain name can easily work with your new one. Once you properly set up your new domain name, you can redirect your old domain name to point to your new one. This ensures you won’t lose any traffic from your customers if they use your old domain name instead of the new one.

    What new domain name endings are available now, and are any a good fit for my business?There are hundreds of new domain name endings available now, and you can find the full list that Google Domains offers here. Whether you’re looking for an industry-specific ending like .marketing or a fun ending like .ninja, there are plenty of options. Be sure to find the right name that fits you and your business.Visit Google Domains and start exploring new domain name endings today. If you have any questions, we’re here to help!

    Posted by Chad Lancaster, Google Domains Marketing

    Make the Most of Shopping Moments this Holiday Season

    Google and Your Business - Wed, 11/18/2015 - 17:00
    ‘Tis the season to shop! This means that many of us are finding ourselves searching for that perfect gift on our smartphones in countless micro-moments throughout the day. These shopping micro-moments have replaced shopping marathons. In fact, shoppers now spend 7% less time on each mobile session, yet online shopping purchases on smartphones have gone up 64% over the last year, and 30% of all online shopping purchases now happen on mobile phones1. That’s why it’s crucial that your business show up when people turn to their mobile devices this holiday season to find products and services like yours.
    Here are tips to help your business connect with potential customers during these shopping micro-moments.

    1) Update your AdWords campaign for the holidays
    Over half of holiday shoppers say they plan to shop on their smartphones in moments throughout the day while walking and commuting2.  Reach shoppers on the go with ads on their mobile devices. If you haven’t checked the text on your ads in a while, take a look and create copy highlighting your seasonal hours, discounts or promotions. This could lead to more traffic to your website and more phone calls and sales.
    2) Drive traffic to your place of business
    With location extensions in AdWords, you can create mobile ads with your address, phone number, and a link with directions to your physical location.


    Evergreen Lodge, for example, uses location extensions and seasonal campaigns to drive customers to their winter package deals at Yosemite. From September until now, their ads have seen a 54% increase in click-through rates compared to ads without an address.
    For businesses looking to drive holiday shoppers to their store this holiday, simply updating your ads with location extensions not only helps people find you online, but can drive foot traffic to your business.  Roughly 95% of retail sales still take place in physical stores3. In addition, 82% of smartphone users say they use search to find a local business4, and 3 in 4 shoppers report being more likely to visit physical stores as a result5. 

    3) Adjust your budget for the busy holiday season
    It’s a busy time of year with holiday shopping traffic increasing for many businesses. Make sure you’re not losing potential traffic. Take a few minutes to see if you’re hitting your CPC (cost-per-click) or CPA (cost-per-acquisition) targets. And glance through your AdWords budget report to make sure your business is showing up when people are looking for you especially during your peak hours. There might be an opportunity to up your budget to maximize reaching that increased traffic while still driving ROI.
    4) Consider creating a gift guide for shoppers
    We could all use a little help in our hunt for the perfect gift, and shoppers are now searching online for gift guides more than ever. If you sell products that are especially helpful for holiday shoppers, think about putting together a list or gift guide to help your customers make choices faster. Kansas City Steaks provides suggestions to shoppers looking for deals on their freshly packaged choice cut meats. They place the gift guide at the top of their website and offer price tiering as well as free shipping deals to increase holiday sales from their website.
    If redesigning your website isn’t a possibility, tap into the 1 in 4 shoppers who say online videos are their go-to source for gift ideas6 by creating a YouTube video highlighting your top holiday items.


    5) Spruce up your business listing with photosGoogle business listings with photos get 42% more requests for directions and 35% more clicks than those without7. That means window shopping is happening online, too. Captivate shoppers before they even click on your website or driving directions by uploading photos on Google My Business. The average user looks at 12+ photos before making a decision, so create the perfect depiction of your business using this shot list or visit www.gybo.com/holidays for more details on how to create great holiday photos on Google My Business.
    We hope these simple tips provide you with easy ways to show up in front of mobile shoppers throughout the yuletide blitz. From our team at Google to your business, we’re wishing you the most fruitful holiday season yet.



    Posted by Claire Mudd, Head of SMB Marketing
    1.  Google Analytics, Account Data in United States, Sept 2014/2015
    2.  Google/Ipsos MediaCT, Consumer Holiday Intentions Study, 20153.  eMarketer, Total US Retail Sales Top $4.5 Trillion in 2013, Outpace GDP Growth, April 20144. Think with Google, Extra Space Storage Creates and Tests Ads in Real Time, Increases CTR by 113%, December 20145. Google, Ipsos MediaCT and Sterling Brands Research Study, March to May 20146.  Google/Ipsos MediaCT, Consumer Holiday Intentions Study, 20157.  Google/Oxera, The Benefits of Complete
 Business Listings, December 2014

    Google & Twitter Small Biz Present: The #SmallBizSquad

    Google and Your Business - Mon, 11/16/2015 - 22:48

    November 28 is Small Business Saturday - one of the biggest days of the year for small businesses.  To celebrate, we've teamed up with our friends at Twitter to form the #SmallBizSquad, bringing you the best tips and resources for you to get ready for the holiday season. Follow @TwitterSmallBiz and @GoogleSmallBiz on Twitter for the latest updates and use #SmallBizSquad to join the conversation.
    And don’t forget - November is #CustomerLoyalty month in the Google Small Business Community. Join us this Friday (11/20 at 12 noon PST) in a live video Q&A as we talk to Lauren Licata from Belly about how to find and retain loyal customers.
    Stay tuned throughout the rest of November for more tips and tricks and as always, join the Google Small Business Community to get the help you need to succeed on the web.

    'Tis the season to showcase your business with photos on Google

    Google and Your Business - Wed, 11/04/2015 - 17:00
    Tony Li opened The Palace restaurant in 2007 after the Chinese restaurant he worked in as a server for 15 years closed. Now, he’s gearing up for another busy holiday season: “The holidays are really crazy. We’ll have probably at least twice as many people in here as we do on our best day outside of Christmas and Christmas Eve.” Across the country, Heather Mohorn is readying her toy store in Philadelphia, Momo’s Tree House, for the holiday rush. “I love being part of the holiday celebration - it's time to think about your loved ones and what would be a special gift for them.”
    It’s time for the holidays, and more people are searching online and on mobile
    61% of shoppers will have already started researching their holiday purchases before Thanksgiving weekend. And people are increasingly turning to their mobile devices to discover holiday destinations and buy holiday gifts. Last year, for example, nearly $1 trillion—28%—of all retail sales were influenced by shopping-related mobile searches.

    Stand out with photos this holiday season
    Business owners like Tony and Heather are looking for ways to stand out to consumers busily preparing for holiday parties, family gatherings and gift exchanges. For both, the answer is clear: “Putting photos on Google helps us make an instant connection with customers,” said Heather. “As a retailer, I want people to see a photo of my store and be taken there in their minds. That makes them more likely to come visit in real life.”

    In fact, Google data shows that the average user looks at 12+ photos before making a decision, and online business listings with photos get 42% more requests for directions and 35% more clicks than those without - meaning more visitors both online and in person.




    We’re here to help you showcase the best your business has to offer this holiday season - which is why we’re introducing www.gybo.com/holidays, a site with resources for updating your business information and uploading photos to Google My Business. You’ll find:
    • Video tutorials: Hit play on these new demos to help your business get seen by holiday shoppers.
    • Live help: Get help from Google My Business experts by calling us at 1-844-442-8695

    Be there and look great in the moments customers are looking for you. These resources are free and available to all businesses, so spread the word and the holiday cheer. Visit us at www.gybo.com/holidays. We (and the rest of the world) can’t wait to see photos of your business.

    Happy holidays!

    Posted by Soo Young Kim, Head of Marketing, Get Your Business Online

    Google Shopping Best Practice Videos Help You Reach More Shoppers for the Holidays

    Google and Your Business - Mon, 10/26/2015 - 16:00
    The holiday season is often the busiest time of year for many small business owners. In addition to running your business, trying to implement a top-notch holiday marketing campaign can be daunting. Here at Google Shopping, we want to help you succeed during one of the busiest times of the year and connect shoppers with your products at the drop of a (Santa) hat.
    Earlier this year, we shared Google for Retail, our online hub for businesses of all sizes to get up and running on Google Shopping. Today, we’re introducing a few new Google Shopping best practice videos, highlighting three tactics to help you turn clicks into customers and find even more shoppers this holiday season.

    Manage your Shopping campaign
    After you’ve set up your Shopping campaign, you’ll want to make sure you have your goals, bids, and budgets set for the best results. In the video below, we’ll eliminate the guesswork and walk you through setting up realistic budget and targets to maximize your reach on Google.



    Get more of your products onlineWhen setting up your first data feeds, you may run into issues that prevent your products from appearing on Google. Learn more about how to get your data feed into tip-top shape to show even more of your products online, making it easier for shoppers to find you.



    Optimize your Shopping campaigns Once your Shopping campaign is up and running, you’re ready to think about how to optimize your ads to get the best return-on-investment (ROI). While there are many ways to do this, the key is knowing what to do first. Learn optimization fundamentals including how to drive traffic to your site and optimize that traffic to maximize your profits and ROI.



    By managing your Shopping campaigns, fixing your data feed disapprovals, and optimizing your ads, searching shoppers can find all the products you’re selling -- helping you efficiently and effectively get more sales for the holidays, and beyond.

    For more information on Shopping campaign best practices, check out the Google Best Practices Help Center or our Google Shopping YouTube channel.

    Posted by Kim Doan, Product Marketing Manager, Google Shopping

    How to Win Autumn's Mobile Moments

    Google and Your Business - Thu, 10/22/2015 - 16:00
    Autumn has arrived. For some, that means settling back into football season. For others, it’s venturing to a local apple orchard on the weekend with friends. And for many, it’s making another attempt at winning the Halloween costume contest. But no matter what, people turn to their mobile devices whenever they want to make the most of their autumn. This time of year is full of potential for businesses to connect with customers in the I-want-to-know, I-want-to-go, I-want-to-do or I-want-to-buy moments when they are making decisions.

    With that in mind, it's time to create the best mobile experience so your business can be there in the moments that matter most this season. Start with these three tips from real-life businesses that are turning autumn into a season of opportunity.


    Be thereLyman Orchards shows up when people search on mobile
    Lyman Orchards is the twelfth-oldest family owned business in the United States. Deeded in 1741, this quaint and picturesque farm spans 1,100 acres in central Connecticut and will celebrate its 275th anniversary throughout 2016. Though its roots are in the 18th century, the company connects with potential visitors in a very 21st century way. Lyman Orchards uses Google My Business to easily provide driving directions, hours of operation, a phone number, and even photos to people using their mobile device to search for fun fall activities.

    Nowadays, consumers are 38% more likely to visit and 29% more likely to consider purchasing from businesses with complete listings online1. And because 4 in 5 consumers use search engines to find local information like store addresses, business hours, product availability and directions2, small businesses need to make sure their information is available when their customers are looking for them–especially on their mobile phones.

    Try updating your Google My Business listing with your seasonal information, hours, and some fall-friendly photos to make sure you're providing would-be visitors with all the information they need in the moment it matters.


    Be usefulBlitsy engages customers with crafting how-to videos
    Blitsy, the self-described “must-go source for crafters,” merges old school hobbies with modern day technology by helping crafters discover the latest designs and trends from their favorite brands. When they know their customers are gearing up for Halloween, Blitsy leverages YouTube to motivate crafters with how-to video content, including DIY Halloween Bats, Witch Broom Drink Stirrers, and Easy 3D Paper Pumpkins. With the season inspiring plenty of spontaneous I-want-to-learn moments, Blitsy connects with their mobile customers in creative ways with useful information.

    What makes Blitsy's strategy so crafty? In our age of instant information, sharing knowledge and useful content can influence purchasing decisions. In fact, 1 in 4 shoppers (26%) say online videos are their go-to source for gift ideas, and 32% of shoppers say they plan to use online video more this year for holiday purchases3. When it comes to providing the right information at the right time, videos can convey your company’s message and story more dynamically and provide a better experience to curious potential customers, many of whom are watching on-the-go. More than half of YouTube views now come from mobile devices.

    So get the camera rolling this fall. Create videos to tell your company's story, share how-to clips, and capture the attention and imaginations of viewers, wherever they're watching.

    Be quickPrint Syndicate makes sure its site is built for swipes
    For those who want to express themselves this autumn season but aren’t inclined to wear a costume, they can turn to Print Syndicate. Selling through its three brands—LookHuman.com, ActivateApparel.com, and MericaMade.com—Print Syndicate is a print-on-demand e-commerce company that designs socially and seasonally relevant apparel, phone cases, housewares and more. Their extensive Columbus, Ohio based team is constantly creating new designs in response to social media trends or upcoming holidays. Given that 30% of online shopping purchases now happen on mobile devices, Print Syndicate has ensured that all three of its brands have mobile-friendly sites showcasing their latest and most clever Halloween shirts. With a few simple swipes on their mobile sites, anyone can find, view and purchase a quirky Halloween t-shirt on-the-go from anywhere in the country.

    Print Syndicate is making sure everyone is ready for Halloween, but it’s also looking ahead to the holidays: 1 in 4 people start holiday shopping before Halloween, and last year more than half of those who shopped online did so using smartphones or tablets. Print Syndicate knows that capturing those mobile I-want-to-buy moments is increasingly important for businesses to compete during the holiday season, so the company runs mobile ads through Google AdWords to reach shoppers searching for creative gifts on their devices.

    Be there when fall’s early holiday shoppers head to the web, and make sure your website is mobile optimized and thumb-friendly to reach customers who are searching on the go. You can also update your website with a seasonal landing page to create an even stronger user experience.

    Mobile is changing the way we live, and changing the types of information customers expect from businesses online. Make the most of that this fall: when mobile users head to the web, be there, be useful, and be quick. These three simple tips can help your business make the most of the season's best autumnal moments.

    Posted by Claire Mudd, Head of Small Business Marketing

    1. Ipsos MORI, Impact of Search Listings for Local Businesses, August 2014
    2. Google/Ipsos MediaCT/Purchased, Understanding Consumers’ Local Search Behavior, May 2014
    3. Google / Ipsos MediaCT, Consumer Holiday Intentions Study 2015

    Custom email, apps and more for Google Domains

    Google and Your Business - Tue, 10/06/2015 - 16:00
    Last year we introduced Google Domains in the U.S. to make it easy for your business to get online with a domain name and website. We wanted to make finding, buying and managing domains for your business simple, and we partnered with best-in-class website builders like Blogger, Shopify, Squarespace, Weebly and Wix to help you create your site — no technical experience required.
    Since then, we have helped people register hundreds of thousands of domain names and create tens of thousands of websites, many of whom are businesses like yours looking to build and expand their online presence. Through your continued feedback, today we’re introducing upgrades to improve the Google Domains experience by adding:
    • Custom email addresses - create an email address like, you@yourdomain or sales@yourdomain via Google Apps for Work.
    • Over 90 new domain name endings - purchase domains with new endings like, .life, .world, .business, .cool, .pizza, .gifts, and .football (here’s the new full list).
    • Domain ownership transfer - allows you to always make sure the right person is managing the right domains (learn more here).

    Custom email addresses are a key part of building your online identity. Email addresses such as you@yourdomain help you establish credibility when you communicate with customers. Setting up a custom email address with Google Domains is an optional service for $5/month/user, and with that you’ll also get the full Google Apps for Work productivity suite. Google Apps for Work includes helpful business tools like video meetings, shared calendars, online document editing and 30 GB of file storage.New domain name endings offer more choice and flexibility as you pick a memorable address for your business website.  New endings are continuously opening up to the web, like .legal, .accountant and .services, and can help you create a name that matches who you are and what you do. Check out some of the people on Google Domains already using these new domain name endings: sublimation.kitchen, smilesnap.social, thecooler.ninja, and marcblair.photography.It’s our mission to help your business easily get online and succeed with a domain name, and we want to make sure we continue to offer you the best tools and experience possible in our beta.  So, if you have any input, questions or feedback, please don’t be shy!
    See you online at www.google.com/domains.
    Posted by Ben Fried, VP and CIO

    Protecting people from illegal robocalls

    Google and Your Business - Wed, 09/16/2015 - 17:00
    You’re eating dinner with your family when the phone rings, and you see a phone number that you don’t recognize. You answer and hear a recording: “It’s extremely urgent that we speak to the business owner! We’ve tried to reach you numerous times. Our records indicate that your Google Business Listing has not been claimed...”
    This is a common type of robocall, or automated phone call that delivers a pre-recorded message to sell or market services. Some, like informational notices from a doctor’s office, airline or pharmacy, can be useful and are allowed by law. Many others, however, are both useless and illegal in the United States. As the FTC explains: “if the recording is a sales message and you haven't given your written permission to get calls from the company on the other end, the call is illegal.”
    Robocallers have targeted Google users for many years. Callers commonly bombard recipients—usually small business owners or individuals—with misleading offers and promotions for improving Google Search and AdWords rankings, or to improve their Google My Business profile. Since the beginning of 2015, we’ve received hundreds of complaints from users about robocalls they’ve received from businesses claiming to be affiliated with Google.
    These illegal calls are a huge nuisance, cause small businesses and Google users to unnecessarily worry, and can lead to rip-offs. Illegal robocalls never have, and never will, come from Google.
    Unfortunately, this is part of a much larger issue that extends beyond just Google users and customers. The FCC received 215,000 complaints about robocalls in 2014, the FTC gets approximately 150,000 complaints about them every month and says it has brought more than 100 lawsuits against more than 600 companies and individuals responsible for billions of illegal robocalls, to date.  Robocallers impersonate many different companies, and have even impersonated the local police, the IRS, and the FTC itself.
    If you receive illegal robocalls, here are a few things you can do right now to protect yourself:
    • Report callers to Google, and also the FTC or the FCC.
    • Hang up the phone. Do not press any key, even if the voice recording prompts you to in order to speak with a live person or to be taken off the call list.
    • Contact your phone company to see if they can block calls from any numbers.
    • Register your personal number with the National Do Not Call Registry at: https://www.donotcall.gov/register/reg.aspx or call 1-888-382-1222.

    It’s difficult for Google to take action against callers because they often use untraceable phone numbers, fake company names, and massive global networks of intermediaries. However, today we’re filing an action in California against one search engine optimization company for making these robocalls and confusing our users. It’s unfortunate when a problem must be addressed in a court of law, but we believe this course of action will protect our users and discourage this practice more broadly.
    Running a small business is hard work under the best of circumstances. Dealing with illegal robocallers isn’t just a waste of time, it can result in wasted resources and significant damage to your business. We hope these tips, and shining a light on the issue, will help discourage and eventually eliminate this practice.
    Posted by Brad Wetherall, Google My Business Operations Manager

    Become a Smarter Marketer with Primer

    Google and Your Business - Tue, 09/15/2015 - 15:00
    Whether you’re a small business owner or a professional at a large company, connecting with customers can be a challenge. The opportunity to reach people in the moments that matter has never been greater, but to succeed, you must master a new set of tools, skills, and strategies. Keeping up can be tough for even the most experienced marketer.
    At Google, we’re working hard to make sure everyone can keep up in today’s digital landscape. That’s why we’re happy to introduce Primer, a free mobile app filled with bite-sized lessons that help you put to work the latest and most useful marketing concepts. You can do Primer’s lessons on the go, whenever you have a few minutes free.  We think of it as an in-the-coffee-line guide to marketing.

    Primer was inspired by the struggles my colleagues and I have faced while trying to learn new marketing topics during our busy daily schedules. The fact is, over 90% of adults don’t spend any time during the day educating themselves.1 So we wanted to build a tool that offers digital lessons that can be soaked up within five minutes – like when you’re on the morning train commute, waiting in line for coffee, or in between meetings.
    Primer lessons are available offline so they can be done anywhere. And each lesson is fun and jargon-free, covering topics like mobile site design, programmatic buying, content marketing, and search advertising. In short, you’ll learn real skills you can use today.


    Whether you’re looking to grow your business, advance your career, or simply build your professional aptitude, Primer presents you with fresh knowledge to become a smarter marketer. Download it now on iPhone and Android or visit us at www.yourprimer.com.  
    Posted by Bethany Poole, Group Marketing Manager, Google
    Sources: 1Data for adults over 25 from the BLS’s American Time Use Survey.

    Google Small Business Presents Social Media Month

    Google and Your Business - Wed, 09/02/2015 - 17:00
    September is Social Media Month for Google Small Business! All month long, we're bringing you a variety of experts to help you harness the power of social for your business. Tune in each Friday at noon PST for a live video Q&A about a different social media topic.
    Check out our lineup below:
    LinkedIn for Small Business, 9/4 at noon PSTYouTube for Small Business, 9/11 at noon PST
    Pinterest for Small Business, 9/18 at noon PST
    Twitter for Small Business, 9/25 at noon PST



    Click on the event links above to RSVP and come prepared with your social media questions. For more tips, tricks and small business help, join the Google Small Business Community.
    Happy Social Media Month!

    Pages