Maximising New Google My Business Attributes
As COVID-19 ebbs and flows, and safety measures evolve, being able to communicate these changes effectively to consumers, staff, and stakeholders becomes paramount.
For organisations looking to meet these needs head-on, Google My Business is a must, with the tool growing in stature every quarter.
Within an organisation's Google My Business profile, updating Attributes is one of the most useful features for communicating updates.
"Google My Business is a great way to keep customers up to date with the most accurate business information, especially since that information often varies by location.
You can add service attributes about your business, like "In-store pickup" and "No-contact delivery", which appear on Google and the Business Profile page, so customers know how you're operating when planning their visit."
People now want to know more before they venture out of their own home. According to Google, searches for 'curbside pick up' have increased more than 3,000% globally since the turn of the year, while searches for 'takeout restaurant' are up over 5,000%.
COVID Specific Attributes
Attributes have long been a feature of Google My Business, and useful for generating standout.
For example, before COVID, you could share whether your business has things like outdoor seating and Wi-Fi, or were women-led.
Adding relevant, accurate attributes to your Business Profile helps your business catch the eye online, appearing on your Business Profile on Google Search and Maps.
Since the onset of COVID, Google has rolled out a raft of dedicated pandemic attributes.
Recent updates will allow businesses to add the following to their listings:
- If you need to make an appointment
- If you need to wear a mask
- If staff where masks
- Whether or not staff are temperature checked
- Whether or not you need to be temperature checked
Google is now beginning to extend select attributes to Local Campaigns, helping you connect with nearby customers when they're searching or browsing Google Maps, Google Search, YouTube, and the Google Display Network.
Google My Business & Local Campaigns
There are a variety of local business attributes available in Google My Business, although most are category dependent. For example, educational providers like SMK will vary from restaurants.
Within Google Local campaigns, it is now possible to highlight attributes, almost like ad extensions, generating extra visibility, building trust and helping drive conversions.
Local campaigns can now highlight dining service attributes like "Dine-in" and "Takeout." Soon you'll be able to feature retail service attributes, like "In-store shopping" and "Curbside pickup."
Google's Local campaigns are primarily automated and meant to help promote a brand or shop across the full suite of Google offerings, including Google Search Network, Google Maps, YouTube and Google Display Network.
Ads can then appear across the Google network. For example, if a potential customer browses the local area on Maps for a business like yours, Google will match those actions to your business.
Google's Burgeoning Online To Offline Offering
Alongside this, Google recently rolled out "Curbside pickup" for local inventory ads to help you connect local shoppers with the products they need and promote safer fulfilment options.
Local inventory ads are now available across select markets worldwide, although Australia is the only market where they are currently live in APAC.
Local inventory ads showcase your products and store information to nearby shoppers searching with Google. When shoppers click your ad, they arrive on a Google-hosted page for your store, called the local storefront. Shoppers use the local storefront to view in-store inventory, get store hours, find directions, and more.
Building on Curbside pickup, Google is now expanding this capability with the introduction of "Pickup later" for local inventory ads.
"Pickup later" provides the option to promote products that may not be available in-store now, but can be available for pickup within a few days.
Google's aspires to own the BOPIS space, as part of the COVID inspired evolution of online/offline commerce. With Google My Business expanding on the organic front and Local campaigns getting better by the month on the paid front, Google is extremely well placed to be a major winner as the world limps out of lockdown.