As small business owners, challenging times require us to think critically and outside the box. How can we utilize the existing tools to communicate with our customers about our plans? How can we stay connected during these social distancing weeks?
Simple, one of the tools I LOVE is Google My Business. Recently, Google developed the ability to create COVID-19 Google My Business posts. I find this to be an excellent way to engage with your customers and tell them about your business updates. Many businesses are developing new strategies like offering virtual visits, product delivery, free classes, etc. By utilizing this new feature, you can keep your customers in the loop.
Here is an example of the knowledge panel display from a business with a COVID-19 update. (Left) desktop view (right) mobile view. Click each image to view it larger.
Google gives you the ability to update the status of your business. Are you Open or Temporary Closed?
With so many rapid changes, it is essential to have a working phone number listed. While we are social distancing, your clients still want to get in touch with you.
You can also update the hours. If you are still open but working on a different schedule, you can update your business hours as you go.
If you are a restaurant, you can let the public know if you are offering deliveries, and take out. If you are a retailer, you can add products or tell your customers what their available options for purchase are.
As you are reviewing your GMB, don’t forget to optimize your NAP (name, address, phone number), and other critical areas that will help your business increase traffic, and your SEO scores. Remember consistency gives you relevancy!
New number? Make it easy for your customers to stay connected. Give them the correct information.
Google allows you to plan. If you know what days of the year you will be closing, Christmas, for example, you can mark these dates ahead. How about an unplanned closing date? Google allows you to update this information in seconds. Special hours are updated almost immediately.
Critical piece to always, always have updated.
For those of you that do not have a physical location but offer services in a region or a specific area, you can show your service area on maps.
If you have recently moved, it is essential to make changes in your GMB as soon as possible. For multiple locations, it is crucial to have the most updated information in your listing.
Do you have a website? If you do, by updating this field, your customers can access your website from the knowledge panel. Once your customers get to your website, keep two things in mind. First off, have a website that converts. Secondly, have a website that delivers a great user experience. One example of a good user experience is to have an optimized site for mobile. Remember, we are not in 1999, but 2020 and most of us are searching the web using our phones. Make it easy for your customers to find you and give them the answers they need.
This feature allows your customers to see the services you offer and more. If you are a restaurant, you can upload pictures of your restaurant menu and also add each menu item. Google gives you the option to list prices.
I hope that you will use these tools to stay connected with your clients.
If you have any questions about how to create COVID-19 Google My Business posts or need additional information on how to optimize your listing, contact us using the link below. We can set up a free consultation call today! If you’re looking for information on COVID-19 federal relief programs check out the last blog post on Salon.Marketing.