What is Google Business Profile, and what happened to Google My Business?
In short, Google Business Profile is the replacement (that comes with some serious makeovers) for Google My Business. The general idea behind the switch is that Google wants to bring the management of your business account out of the Google My Business app and instead allow businesses to manage their accounts directly from Google Search and Google Maps.
If you are a business owner, you may be confused about what has changed and what features from Google My Business are still working and which are not. Today, we’ll explore the features of Google Business Profile so you know which tools you should focus on moving forward.
What’s New in Google Business Profile?
The switch to Google Business Profile has been challenging for many businesses — especially when they need to figure out which features have changed and what this means for their online presence.
Here, we will dive into some of the biggest changes that have come with the switch from Google My Business.
Of course, one of the most obvious changes to the previous “Google My Business” has been the name change. While “Google Business Profile” is not that different from the previous name, Google has elected this new name to keep business profile management straightforward for business owners.
This section is one of the most important features of the new Google Business Profile. This section allows you to view (and respond to) customer reviews of your business.
Many businesses may think they should only reply to or address the negative reviews, but it is a good idea to also express gratitude to the customers who have taken the time to give you a good review. Another thing to remember is that when you are addressing a negative review, you want to focus on how you can improve or solve the problem. This allows you to address the issue, and then if it is solved, the customer can go back and edit their review later on — which is good for your reputation in the long run.
One of the new features that Google announced with the release of “Google Business Profile” changes how your business can verify or claim your online profile.
Essentially, rather than using a separate platform — like was needed with the previous Google My Business platform — the update and rebrand allow you to claim and verify your Google Business Profile directly from Google Search and Maps.
This new feature is still experimental, and it is only available in Canada and the United States. But, this feature aims to help you respond to missed calls, engage with your customers, and connect with customers who have found your business through Google.
Consumers today love being able to connect with businesses at any time. With Google’s Chat feature, your customers can easily contact you right from your Google profile in Google Search. This is a great way to engage with your customers, answer their questions, tell them about your business’s story, and more.
Messages received this way will appear in your Business Profile, and you’ll receive notifications anytime a new message comes in. You can also create automated welcome responses for your customers when they first message, so they know you have gotten their message and feel welcomed by your business.
One of the features included in the new Chat feature is the ability to include read receipts. These read receipts are turned on by default when you turn messaging on for your Google Business Profile, but you can turn them off in the message settings if you do not want to send these receipts.
People use Google every day. This makes it an incredibly high-traffic area of the internet. Because of this, it can be an excellent place to let customers know about any new offers or what your business does best (whether this is a specific product that is a bestseller or a service you provide).
You can also use this feature to post seasonal specials, events, deals, and sales — which can be a great way to draw in new business. When customers search for your business online, they will see these most recent posts, so make sure you come up with some catchy headlines!
Another important distinction between the new Google Business Profile and the previous Google My Business is analytics. In Google Business Profile, an intuitive and dynamic analytics dashboard (called Insights) allows you to better understand which customers you are reaching and which ones you are not.
It also shows what percentage of people found your business by searching specifically for your company name versus what percentage found you by searching for a product or service that you provide. This can help you to determine if you are getting more of your customers from returning shoppers or recommendations or if you’re getting new customers more from organic searches.
Another tool that Google Business Profile offers your business is the Performance Planner. Using this planner, you can assess forecasts for your campaigns, explore outcomes by adjusting the settings of your campaigns, understand opportunities that come up in seasonal periods, and manage your budget across different accounts and campaigns.
Essentially, you can use this tool to plan and manage your campaign and get suggestions on how to improve them for the future.
How to Keep Up
We live in a world where people can find any piece of information, product, or service in just a few clicks. This has made consumers very well accustomed to (and expectant of) quick and easy solutions to their questions or problems. As a business, you want to be able to provide those solutions for them.
But, as technology keeps changing and advancing, it can be incredibly difficult to keep up with everything you need to update to present yourself as a reliable source that your customers can turn to. When Google My Business changed to Google Business Profile, new features and tools emerged, and older tools became obsolete. Knowing which tools you should still be using and which new tools you should set up can be a lot to keep track of.
Luckily, though, an easier solution can help you keep up to date with all of the changes to social media platforms and search engines like Google. Rather than trying to do everything on your own, you can work with a company like APS Central. Our full-service marketing agency can help you keep up with these changes, stay on top of marketing trends, and explore innovative and creative solutions to your marketing campaigns.