Google is known for many things, but an ability to allow businesses to easily connect with customers is not one of them. But that’s changing, says Steve Wyer of Third Coast Interactive, the developer of a comprehensive suite of apps branded as The Review Solution. Wyer has long advocated for Google My Business as a way to remain visible on the web, even when the original service was little more than a free listing opportunity, basic business information, and customer reviews. Now Google is growing, and marketing giant Facebook needs to take notice.
According to Wyer, Google My Business customers using the app via Android and iOS now have the option to both view and respond to customer interaction. Google rolled out several new features in November of 2018. Businesses can now also publish content, such as special offers and changing business hours, which will be released to those who are followers via Google Maps.
Google My Business has redesigned its dashboard with a customer’s tab that allows users on the back end more information regarding their listing. The updated app has proven popular and easily rivals Facebook Pages.
Move over, social media
The ability to release content is one of the most exciting features introduced in the recent update. Previously, businesses that wanted to release news to their customers had to do so through Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram. Publishing directly to the Google My Business platform means business owners can reach customers directly through Google Maps or the site’s standard Search function. Considering that Google sees more than 1.5 billion more searches each day than Facebook, this means greater visibility.
A smart (and free) tool
Setting up a Google My Business account is not difficult, and considering that it is a free service, Wyer notes that it doesn’t make sense for any business to skip it.
Google My Business provides numerous benefits, especially to small business owners. Notably, it is a central location to update business information. Business data, such as the address, menu, hours, and events, can be entered directly into the app. This ensures accuracy on Google’s search results pages and also third-party applications that use Google data. Google’s “insights” is another valuable tool that shows business owners and managers how potential customers are finding them and where visibility may be an issue. This information provides guidance on where to launch new marketing campaigns to engage a wider audience and improve search engine rank.
Businesses that accept appointments or reservations can take advantage of the ability for customers to create appointments directly from the search page. This means customers are not forced to enter a website or call the company but instead can easily secure a spot online.
Review management is another area where Google My Business shines. Steve Wyer stresses that customer reviews, both positive and negative, are a valuable asset to any business. Positive reviews show potential clients how a business treats its customers. And while no one wants to receive two-star feedback, negative reviews are a great way to engage in a dialogue where managers or owners can publicly resolve issues related to service or quality.
Google and Google My Business continue to release new updates to best respond to the two trillion searches made on the site each day.
Latest posts by Steven Wyer ( More about this Author )
- Marketing Through TripAdvisor? Don’t Offer Review Incentives April 16, 2020
- 7 Reasons Online Reviews Matter March 2, 2020
- Why Aren’t 4 Stars Enough? February 16, 2020
- Who’s Listening to Your Private Conversations? February 5, 2020
- Flip the Script: How to Combat Negative Reviews January 31, 2020
- Be the Star of Your Own Reviews December 18, 2019
- What Are Fake Reviews, and Why Should I Be Concerned? July 3, 2019
- FTC Strikes Blow to Fake Reviews, Amazon Shoppers (and Sellers) Will Benefit June 6, 2019
- FTC Targets Paid Reviews; Calls Out False Product Claims May 23, 2019
- Replies Made Easy Via Google Maps May 7, 2019