Apple recently launched Business Connect, enabling businesses to easily claim and optimize their Apple Maps locations. Getting started as a single or multi-location business takes only minutes.
Once you have set up and claimed your location, you will have access to view and edit your place cards. This includes:
- Update your location details.
- Add photos.
- Post a showcase.
- See your location’s performance and engagement on Apple Maps.
Apple Business Connect offers three different workflows:
- small companies.
- Corporate brands with 25 or more locations.
- Third-party partners who manage data on behalf of other businesses and may submit this data through an API.
In this article, you’ll learn how to get started with Apple Business Connect.
Get started with Apple Business Connect
First, create an Apple ID if you don’t already have one.
Next, go to the Apple Business Connect website, select your business type (Small, Enterprise, or Third Party Partner), and log in with your Apple ID.
If you are a brand utilizing third parties to submit and access data through APIs, you will still need to set up and claim your first location in Business Connect. You can then choose to delegate your account to an agency who can bulk add your remaining locations.
For single locations and small businesses with fewer than 25 locations, your first step will be to search or create your locations.
For an enterprise business, you should click on the “Sign up as a business” prompt at the bottom.
When you click here, you will be taken directly to a business verification page where you will need to enter your branding information, including your DUNS number. (Apple also has a helpful onboarding guide for businesses.)
For small businesses (fewer than 25 locations that Apple considers a brand), you will need to search for your location on Apple Maps and select a matching business that appears in the search results, or select Create a new location if your business is not listed Options.
If you’re creating a new location, you’ll need to add address details and make sure the map pin is above the entrance to your location. You can add exact coordinates if needed.
In the next two steps, you need to add main times, holidays, and special times.
Special hours are described as custom or temporarily set times, such as periods of time in which you extend or shorten availability.
Then you need to add main and additional categories, website and phone number. (This is an excellent resource for finding the full list of Apple Business categories.)
Additional categories help with searches and can be differentiated by location, Apple said.
Throughout the setup process, Apple begins building your business card preview. According to Apple:
“When you change information about a location in Business Connect, it will appear in this preview. After you send your changes to Apple for review, it may take up to three days for your changes to be published on Maps on the location card.”
The final steps of setup focus on verification. You will next need to add your company details for verification so Apple can determine if you are the appropriate contact to manage this location on Apple Business Connect.
In order to complete the verification, you will need to provide recognizable business documents such as a business registration, utility bill or lease agreement and a description of the document.
It may take up to five days for your business verification to be processed.
Once verified, you can begin adding additional information to your Place Card, including:
- A unique description of your business location.
- Attributes or add-ons to your business. Property types vary by business type, but include the following categories:
- payment method.
- Reservation type (appointment only, walk-in).
- Parking options.
- Restroom type and availability.
- Technical features (wifi and air conditioning).
- COVID-19 testing and vaccination options.
- Business model (cooperative, nonprofit, membership requirements).
- Safety (cooling centers, COVID-19 precautions, shelters).
- smoking parameters.
- Electric vehicle charging availability.
- Atmosphere details (suitable for kids, couples, groups).
- What types of pets are or are not allowed.
- Links to applications that support functionality such as ordering, booking, or appointments.
- Your company photo, including your logo and cover, which will remain at the top of your business card. Apple advises that photos will be reviewed and may take up to three days to be published. You can find a photo guide here.
- A showcase for your business that highlights timely updates, new features and products. Showcases expire after 30 days, and unless you set them to end early, it can take up to three days for Apple to review and approve your showcase. The showcase includes the following elements:
- A photo and an image tag (accessibility and screen readers should be added).
- A short title of up to 38 characters.
- Display case description up to 58 characters.
- One or more calls to action, including:
- “Call now”
- “Get Directions”
- “Share this place”
- “Add to Favorites”
- “Rate This Place” – This allows users to provide feedback on overall ratings, food and drink, customer service and ambience. It also prompts users to recommend the place to friends or family.
Note that Showcases are only available for businesses in the United States, but Apple is working to make them available globally in the coming months.
If you manage or own more locations, just click the “Add” button in the upper right corner of the dashboard to start the process again. You can also invite other users who need access to manage your locations.
More ways to interact with Apple Maps users
Business Connect is an exciting and well-received innovation from Apple.
It offers local businesses a great opportunity to engage with Apple Maps users and is designed in a way that businesses of all shapes and sizes can get started easily.
You can find more information in the Apple Business Connect User Guide.
The opinions expressed in this article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Search Engine Land. Staff authors are listed here.
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