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.
Connect GMB to E-commerce
After announcing a new Shopify integration to streamline its Google Shopping connection earlier this month, Google is now expanding its third-party shopping partners, with WooCommerce, GoDaddy and Square all soon set to join the platform’s eCommerce integrations.
In addition to this, Google is looking to stay in touch with the next phase of digital product discovery, through the expanded use of AR (augmented reality) for item listings and promotions.
Given the popularity of video content more broadly, the integration makes sense, and it’ll be interesting to see how Google incorporates these new options into search and maps – which could make Google My Business listings a much more significant consideration for eCommerce in the near future.
Say Goodbye to Shortnames
Google created shortnames, or shortlinks, to make it easier for businesses to provide a direct link to Maps (directions) and the Listing (Review requests, Offers, etc). After a brief existence, shortlinks are being retired.
If your business created a shortlink, it will continue to work.
If you did not create a shortlink, the option will not be visible and you will be unable to create a new link.
Find a Recycling Location
Google is launching an initiative which will help people find places where they can drop off their junk or materials they no longer need so that it can be processed and recycled.
Google Maps is introducing new tools which will help people to find out where they can dispose of their used materials so they can be recycled properly. Verified businesses which will be accepting recycling material can use Google My Business to let people know the type of materials like clothing, electronics, batteries, hazardous waste, glass, plastics which they will be accepting for recycling.
Easier Editing of GMB
Business owners can now add their local service offerings (e.g., eyelash extensions, leak repairs, ground wire installations, etc.) to their GMB profiles directly from Search. And, beginning next week, local businesses will be able to schedule Google Posts from directly within Search.
In order to update your GMB profile from Search or Maps, you must be logged into a Google account associated with your business. To update your profile from Search, type in your business name or “my business.” To update it from Maps, tap on your profile picture followed by “Your Business Profile.”
*For restaurants.* Restaurant owners can now add menu items to their GMB profile from Search and Maps. Google is also rolling out the ability to add and update ordering options (i.e., pick-up or delivery) from Search — that feature will be arriving in the coming weeks.
In addition, restaurant and service business owners can now enable online bookings through their GMB profiles from Search. To take advantage of this feature, business owners must sign up with a Reserve with Google partner.
Local Opportunity Finder
Google launched a new tool called Local Opportunity Finder. The tool is designed to provide local business owners with tailored recommendations to improve their visibility on Search and Maps. Business owners can simply enter the name of their business into the tool and Google will provide a list of resources, such as how to respond to reviews or tips for uploading photos.
Local GMB Search vs an Informational Search
In the split second it takes for Google to produce a search result, one of the most important, and sometimes frustrating aspects of the result, is intent. Google interprets the searchers intent into four moments – Know, Go, Do and Buy.
Searchers early in their buying journey want to ‘know” how to do something while later in the journey, right before purchase, is a “buy” moment.
Customers searching for a local business (plumber, restaurant, retail) are more likely wanting to buy, thus Google provides local results via GMB listings.
From an SEO perspective, the rules are the same.
*Google affirms that the SEO for content is the same:*
“It’s essentially the same. We don’t do anything different with regard to these different kinds of pages. But rather we try to find the content on the page, understand how it’s relevant and treat that appropriately.”
Site Manager User Role to be Retired
After October 24, 2021, the Site manager role will no longer be available in Google My Business. Anyone who manages your business as a Site manager will be converted to Manager. Managers are able to make additional changes to your Business Profiles on Search, Maps, and other Google services. If you would like to remove any Site managers from your Business Profile before his change occurs, you can manage who has access to your profiles by heading to business.google.com.