With more and more people are now turning to search engines to find out local business information, Google rolls out Posts to local small businesses, that appear on Google My Business listing, and can be accessed on both the desktop and the GMB Android and iOS apps.
When tapped the Posts can be read in its full form, and can also be share with anyone directly from Google. The Posts on Google gives offer customers with following abilities:
- "Share daily specials or current promotions that encourage new and existing customers to take advantage of your offers.
- Promote events and tell customers about upcoming happenings at your location.
- Showcase your top products and highlight new arrivals.
- Choose one of the available options to connect with your customers directly from your Google listing: give them a one-click path to make a reservation, sign up for a newsletter, learn more about latest offers, or even buy a specific product from your website," says Google.
Not only consumers, but Google Posts also helps businesses as they can share timely, relevant updates about their products and services right on Google Search and Maps. Business can also add custom "calls-to-action" like "Learn more," "Reserve," "Sign up," "Buy" or "Get offer" directly on their business listing.
To acces Google Posts, go to your My Business account and click on "Posts" on the left-side menu when you are in your Google business listing, or access right here. And, when writing a post, several options like: upload an image, write text (up to 300 words) or add an event title (with start and end dates and times) are available.
Posts will show up in both Google search and maps results.
For more details, check out this Google My Business help document.
Also, Google has updated monthly My Business insights email sent to businesses summarizing the statistics and analytics about their local listing performance.
The new email appealing visually shares all the previous details with additional insights like visits to a website, reviews, type of searches, alongside original details that include: number of people who clicked to get directions and number of people who called business from the listing.
See the screenshots below (via):
Also, Google is reportedly testing a new My Business (GMB) dashboard for an easier update to their listings, right from within the web search results, when they logged in to their GMB account and search for their business name in Google.
The new dashboard gives bunsinesses a quick access to edit information, add photos, read reviews and see their business insights.
See the two screenshots below (via):
Google has also begin rolling out Messaging, Knowledge Panel SMS chat feature to dashboards in Google My Business, so that businesses can start messaging with customers directly from the local panel in mobile search.
The feature is currently made available to local business in the U.S. under a new section "Messaging" on the left, alongside a new option in the mid that reads, "Message with customer" in the Google My Business dashboard.
First time, when a business logs in to their My Business account, would need to configure their mobile number of the Allo device, as they would "listen" to the messages either via SMS or Allo.
After, verifying the number, an autoreply to customers who use the feature is need to be set up, that will show a message icon for a company's local panel in mobile search. The icon clicking upon, open up the native messaging app on customers mobile to message.
Using the Reserve with Google program, customers can now book appointments for spa and salon right from Google Search and Maps.
The feature is currently only available to users across the U.S, who can see pricing, select appointment time and reserve it. And, those, who have Google Wallet enabled, can also pay for services, where supported.