OFA Bulletin January/February 2012 : Page 3

January/February 2012 • N u m b e r 9 3 1 trends. Connecting with these groups may bring added sales and will certainly expand the visibility of your company. InformationAge magazine reported, “Collaboration is not just some over-hyped buzzword, but an essential part of business life.” It further stated that the Economist Intelligence Unit found that more than 50 percent of business executives believe collaborative working “will either form an important part of their firm’s competitive advantage or will actually be central to its survival...” Business models are already changing to take advantage of these collaborative partnerships. OFA is taking the lead in this area to help keep the industry relevant and our member businesses agile in order to address future opportunities and threats. Michael V. Geary, CAE Chief Executive Officer OFA – The Association of Horticulture Professionals 2130 Stella Ct Columbus, OH 43215 614-487-1117 mgeary@ofa.org Garden Center Improve Your Google Places Page & Other Tips – Part 2 By Alicia (Wells) Rittenhouse T he first installment of this series appeared in the November/ December 2011 issue of the OFA Bulletin . It covered the basics of setting up a Google account, how to claim your business, and update its information. Claiming your business is critical, and the previous article walked you through the process step by step. To start, log into your Google Places page by visiting google.com/places. The page gives two options – “Rate and Share Places on Google” or “Get Your Business Found on Google.” Select the button below the latter – “Get started” – even though you’ve already started the process of claiming your business (Figure 1). Publicize Your Hours & Payment Methods Customers often use Google Maps on their mobile phones to find products and stores while on the go. Often these customers are planning a trip to your store in the near future and may even be enroute, so helpful information such as shopping hours and payment methods (especially if you have restricted payment methods such as cash only) can help customers easily plan their time and make their shopping more productive (Figure 2). Figure 2. Provide helpful information to customers. Show Your Service or Delivery Area If your business offers floral, mulch, or other delivery services you can easily show this on your Google Places page (Figure 3, page 4). Google provides two options – a delivery Figure 1. Get started. OFA Bulletin 3

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