If it feels like a lot of companies are changing their names and the names of their products or services lately, you’re not wrong! Facebook is now under the technology conglomerate Meta, which is the parent organization of Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp, among other subsidiaries. Recently Google made a change too: Google My Business is now Google Business Profile. Here’s what that means for your business.
What is Google Business Profile?
To understand what Google Business Profile is, let’s first talk about what Google My Business was. Google My Business was a free tool for businesses and organizations to manage their online presence across Google, including search and maps. This platform was ideal to help customers find your business, and to tell them your story, publish events, images, and more. It was an effective way to verify your business and edit your business information for the public to see. At a minimum, having accurate NAP (name, address, and phone number) was important to update and monitor your company on Google My Business. Google Business Profile isn’t necessarily taking any of those features away (which is good!). There are a few differences with this new (updated) offering. One of our favorites is the new “customers” tab. The Customers section allows you to engage with your customers in ways that are easier than ever before. Previously, it was really a matter of just responding to reviews; now you can have more interaction.
Is the functionality different than Google My Business?
One of the biggest upgrades from Google My Business (GMB) to Google Business Profile is the ease in updating information. It used to be that you had to log in via your desktop or an app to update your information. Now you can update your business information directly from search, which makes it much easier to keep your information current. Another new feature is being able to verify your business through search too. Just do a search for your company’s name on Google or on the Google Maps app and you’ll see an option to verify your Business Profile or resolve other issues your profile might have, like a suspension. Anyone who ever experienced the snail mail postcard option to get your business verified is going to love this new feature! They also added a variety of ways to promote your business. They even added further editing features such as adding exterior pictures, seeing your call history and adding an update post quickly and easily. Messaging can be executed directly from search now too! Just a heads up: sometime in 2022, Google will retire the Google My Business app completely.
What do you need to do for this change?
The short answer is nothing. The biggest change is getting used to managing profiles directly from search results or maps instead of the platform or app interface. If you manage multiple locations for your business, you will still continue to use an interface like Google My Business, renamed to Business Profile Manager going forward. Of course, more features mean the potential for more work since you now have so many more options to interface with clients, advertise, etc. To make sure your Google Business Profile is as updated and effective as possible, work with a small business local search marketing professional that understands these changes and can manage them for you.
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