The latest updates on Google My Business.
This post is part of a continuing series of monthly updates on the #1 search tool used by ready-to-buy customers. For all the updates, or to see additional information, read Attract More Customers with Google My Business.
While summer seems to be disappearing, Google My Business users are seeing a few disappearing acts of their own. And not in a good way.
Reports of disappearing reviews on Google Listings.
At the time the reports were sporadic and unconfirmed. Google later spoke to the issue only to say it was aware that a small number of business owners were indicating legitimate reviews were missing and explained that in an attempt to clean up fake reviews, these authentic reviews were inadvertently removed. Google claims the issue is fixed and advises business owners that if you are still missing reviews; they’re not coming back!
Get a Quote
If you are a Better Business Bureau member, one of the benefits of membership is the ability for customers to request a quote directly from your listing. There are early reports indicating a “Request a Quote” button is coming to your listing soon; keep a close eye on the feature and be sure to test it before a customer does!
In order for Request a Quote to be active, you must turn on Messaging in your listing. To turn on Messaging, log in to business.google.com, look to the left on desktop for “Messaging” and toggle the option “on” using an SMS-capable phone number. On mobile, select from the profile options, toggling the feature “On.”
Google strives to make it as easy as possible for customers to contact and do business with a local business. By responding quickly, you can increase your business’ likelihood that you will acquire a new customer.
Listing Insights and Dashboard Redesign
Ever wonder how your business listing Insights compare? Google tells us on average 1000 people view a business listing in a month. The most viewed listings are in the Hotel industry with 13,000+ views per mos.
84% of viewers see your listing after searching for a business in a specific category. For example, based on the current location and a search for gas stations, here are the search results.
These three results (spelling mistakes and all!) are what Google expects most closely match the search terms. Each of these listings will indicate one additional Discovery view, simply because they were viewed once.
As a business owner, likely wanting to increase sales and customer visits, the key measure is conversions. Conversions are how many people contact your business based on seeing your listing. Your listing tracks visits to your website, phone calls and requests for directions. It is ONLY these actions that Google counts as a conversion.
On average, business owners see a 5% conversion rate on their Google business listing.
If your listing is viewed 1000 times per month, a 5% conversion would represent 50 actions on your listing.
Google also points out there is a very strong correlation between the number of photos on your listing and the number of views. Speaking of photos, are you seeing a more visual dashboard, with larger photos and better selections? Not everyone is, but you can be sure it is coming your way!
What the heck? You never added a POI category to your listing. Where did this come from? Google added a new POI (Point of Interest) category to listings based on location. While it is not clear how locations were chosen, it seems like an added bonus if Google sees your location as a POI.