Google My Business becomes Google Business Profile
Google My Business (GMB) is now Google Business Profile (GBP). In case you missed the news, Google has rebranded its business solution from Google My Business to Google Business Profile. It’s not just a change in name, however. It’s a next step in Google’s effort to support local businesses and includes a variety of new features specifically designed for local business searches.
What’s Changing in Google Business Profile?
The biggest change for local businesses is the ability to claim your profile. Explains Matt Madrigal, Vice President, GM, Merchants: “Starting this week, you can easily claim and verify your Business Profile directly on Google Search or the Google Maps app. Search for your business by name and you’ll see an option to claim and verify the associated Business Profile. Once your business is verified, you can edit your business’ information, including the address, store hours, photos and more.”
Local businesses are encouraged to search and claim their business profile and then manage it directly through Search or Map. This makes it easier to update hours for the holidays and add specials on the fly.
Google Business Profile – Benefits for Local Business Owners
These significant changes from Google are designed to make it easier for local business owners to engage with local customers. It also makes it even easier for consumers to find the products they want.
Engagement: Local business owners will now have the capability of messaging their customers directly through Google Search, a feature that was not available in the past. This will make it easier for local businesses to reach out to interested consumers with customized offers, specials, and welcome discounts to encourage them to come in.
Analytics: If a customer uses the Google call button while on your business profile, you’ll now be able to access information about when the calls came in, how many there were, and how many you missed. You can enable Google call history and the calls will be routed through a forwarding number in order to better track the calls.
Bigger, Better Changes Coming to Google Business Profile for Local Businesses
There is no escaping the fact that 90% of consumers turn to Google first to find where to shop, when you’re open, where you’re located, and whether or not you’re worth shopping from (based on reviews). The best way to make sure you’re the business consumers choose is by having a well-developed presence on Google and by taking advantage of all of the features they have.
In addition to the switch from Google My Business to Google Business Profile and the accompanying local business features, Google will continue to roll out additional changes that will make it easier to engage with your local customers.
Attract More Shoppers for the Holidays
According to Google, 60% of shoppers are planning to do their shopping with local businesses. However, they will rely on Google to make sure that they can get what they need when they need it. These features, which are coming to Google Business Profile, will help local businesses attract holiday shoppers and beyond.
Report Local In-Stock Inventory on Your Google Business Profile
A new local “in-stock” filter will allow local businesses to customize their product listing based on which location is being searched for by consumers. This will enable the consumer to determine if a product they want is in stock. Local inventory ads will allow you to connect your eCommerce page directly to your Google Ads so that only available products are showcased in your ads. Through Google Business Profile, you can also effectively turn your local business into an eCommerce store by offering free and fast delivery.
Optimize Your Website for Google Local Search Results
It’s important to understand the changes that Google is making to enhance local search results. As these changes roll out to better serve consumers making the searches, it allows you to adjust your local marketing tactics to make sure you are being found.
The name may have changed; however, your Google Business Profile will continue to be mission-critical to your success. Local search optimization will become even more important in the future, and Google is ensuring that they provide the most reliable results to keep users relying on their search engine. Your local business can benefit by employing the new tools they are offering, updating your profile regularly, and optimizing your website to be the local business Google chooses to serve up when a search is conducted.
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