If you want someone to do you a favor, you’ll have better luck if you make the favor as simple and convenient as possible. Provide instructions and examples. Be lenient about the timeframe and flexible with your standards. Make the favor uncomplicated and foolproof. For example, if you want your customers to leave you reviews on Google My Business, make sure the URL is as simple as possible so that your customers can easily remember it and type it into the browser’s address bar. With this idea in mind, Google began allowing users to create customized short names and short URLs for their Google My Business listings in April 2019. If you haven’t already taken advantage of this feature, scroll down to learn how to create a short URL for Google reviews. A distinctive, punchy, and business-specific URL could be just what you need to garner more reviews.
How Short Names and Short URLs Work
Google introduced this feature to address a user inconvenience. Some businesses were using their Google My Business profiles as landing pages to secure leads, earn reviews, display photos, share news, provide updates, and more. But because their profile URLs were lengthy and cumbersome – chock-full of random numbers and letters – they were difficult to share and impossible to remember. Google created short names and short URLs for Google My Business to make it easier for business owners to share their profiles and for consumers to interact with those profiles.
The format for a Google My Business profile URL with a short name is simple:
For example, our profile can be found at http://www.g.page/417marketing.
This type of link works on both desktop and mobile devices, and it takes consumers to your business listing in Google Maps. There, they will see a variety of information about your business: a map displaying your location, your logo, your rating and reviews, your phone number, your hours, your website, and more.
If you want to share a link that your customers can use to leave reviews on your Google My Business profile, simply add “/review” to the end of your profile URL. Like this:
For example, our customers are welcome to leave us reviews at http://www.g.page/417marketing/review.
This type of link opens an empty review form displayed on top of your profile page. It gives customers a chance to rate you (out of five stars), write a review, and share photos of your business.
The Benefits of a Short Profile URL
You might be wondering if creating a short name and short URL are really worth the trouble. First, it’s important to note that it takes almost no time at all to create a short name, so it’s not much of a hassle. Second, a short URL for your Google My Business profile and customer review form provide several benefits:
- Easy to Remember: There’s a reason we chose the URL www.417marketing.com instead of, say, www.l&hikmq8#jr01lpraw2$ncm39.com. It’s easier to remember because it makes sense. And because it’s memorable, it’s more accessible to customers who are looking for our business online. Whether a customer is looking for your Google My Business profile to find directions, learn your business hours, or leave a review, they will appreciate a basic and memorable web address. A short URL is also easier for you (the business owner) to remember, which means you may be more likely to include it in social media posts.
- Easy to Type: Not only are shorter and simpler URLs easier to remember, but also they’re easier to type into the browser’s address bar. Again, this makes them more accessible to customers.
- Easy to Promote: No one wants to include the web address www.l&hikmq8#jr01lpraw2$ncm39.com on their sleek, attractive new brochures. It looks messy and random, and it doesn’t convey anything about the business’s name or service. It also looks bad on social media posts, in e-mails, and anywhere else you might wish to use it. A simple, clean URL works much better in promotional materials and posts online.
- Boost Your Reviews (and Thus, Your SEO): Because of the three advantages listed above, you may be able to get more reviews once you know how to create a short URL for Google reviews. These reviews can have a valuable impact on your business’s reputation, your local rankings, and your overall sales. After all, searchers are drawn to companies with a large number of high ratings and positive reviews. Garnering Google reviews can even impact your SEO – and simply responding to your reviews can boost your local ranking.
How to Create a Short URL for Google Reviews
How to Create a Short Name and URL
Are you ready to create your short name? As long as you’re a verified business on Google, you can complete the simple process by following these steps:
- Sign in to Google My Business
- Open the location for which you want to create a short name.
- Click Info.
- Click Add Profile Short Name. (It is represented by an @ symbol.)
- Enter your short name. You must use no less than 5 characters and no more than 32 characters.
- Click Apply.
Immediately after you do this, your short name’s status will be listed as “pending.” When it has been approved, it will show on your Business Profile. Typically the approval process only takes a few minutes.
How do I create a short URL for my profile?
In creating your short name, you will also create your short URL. You don’t need to take any further action.
Can I change my short name?
Yes. Keep in mind, however, that while you are allowed to change your short name, you may only do so three times per year. In addition, it’s generally not wise to change your name often. To reduce customer confusion and personal inconvenience, choose a name and stick with it.
What should my short name be?
As you’re limited on how often you may change your short name, take a little time to consider your options before you commit to one. Be strategic. If you already use a shorter business name on social media, you may wish to use that for consistency. Or, you could include the name of your company or your location – but remember to keep it short!
So long as you don’t violate any policies, infringe upon another business trademark, or use a name that’s already been spoken for, you’re free to choose whatever name you like.
If you have multiple locations, note that you must claim your short names individually per listing. Try to be consistent with your names to ensure they look professional and to make it easier for you to remember them. For example, you could use the formula of business name plus location, i.e., LinseyDentalSpringfield, LinseyDentalBranson, LinseyDentalNixa, etc.
How to Share Your Short URL for Google Reviews
As we noted above, short URLs for Google reviews follow this formula: http://www.g.page/[yourshortname]/review. After you create your short name, try typing that link into your web browser’s address bar with your new short name inserted. If that doesn’t work or you’re looking for another way to find and share your short URL for Google reviews, use the following steps:
On Your Computer
- Sign in to Google My Business.
- If you have multiple locations, click the location you would like to manage.
- In the menu on the left side of the page, click Home.
- In the “Get more reviews” card, copy your short URL and share it with customers.
On a Mobile Device
- Open the Google My Business app.
- Click Customers and then Reviews.
- In the top right corner, click Share.
- If you haven’t already created a short name, you will be asked to create one at this point.
- Copy your short URL to share with customers.
While we encourage you to share your review link with customers, remember that Google’s review policies prohibit businesses from soliciting reviews by offering customers incentives or setting up review stations at their places of business. If you defy this rule, your reviews may be removed.
Now that you know how to create a short URL for Google reviews, what are you waiting for? It only takes a few minutes to secure your new light and breezy link. And if you have further questions about short names or short URLs, check out Google’s support page on the subject. You might also find it helpful to review our blog posts about How to Get More Google Reviews and How to Respond to Google Reviews.
If you’re hoping to build a beautiful, effective website that ranks highly on Google, contact 417 Marketing for help. Our team of knowledgeable, creative, and passionate professionals specializes in SEO, web design and maintenance, and Google Ads, and we have successfully completed over 700 websites since our inception in 2010. Click here to contact us and learn more about what we can do for your company.