How Google My Business Can Help with Social Distancing
In these trying times, many businesses have been forced to adapt. Whether it be handling fewer customers, keeping physical locations closed or any other of a number of unique problems, many inventive solutions have emerged in 2020 to help businesses and customers alike.
Google in particular has added a variety of features since COVID’s arrival that allow brands to more effectively juggle the dynamics of social distance. Given that customers can now better connect with businesses online, it is providing at least some businesses with an opportunity to prosper and be socially responsible.
Today, we’ll examine how GMB specifically can help businesses with social distancing.
Secondary Hours and Info
With the irregularities of pandemic life keeping many businesses on constant watch, hours can shift from day to day or week to week. Likewise, some businesses may wish to accommodate select, higher-risk customers during hours when the rest of the public is not allowed to visit.
This is why GMB’s new secondary hours and info features are extremely helpful. Brands can easily begin pinging to Google updated info about hours – both primary and secondary – as well as updates about social distancing guidelines. This can help maximize social distancing and reduce the chances of irritation from customers who weren’t aware of recent changes.
Within GMB’s dashboard, businesses can find a new array of video services. Through Google Meet, Zoom, Webex or Skype, businesses can setup their own conferencing systems that can easily be configured to display alongside their business listings on Google.
This makes it very easy for customers and clients to book virtual appointments via the internet and be seen in-person – while adhering to strict social distancing policies.
Through the same service as mentioned above, GMB is also offering businesses the ability to configure select online learning options. While Reserve with Google is required for this service, everybody – from online tutors to fitness trainers – can now create multi-faceted, engaging training sessions without anybody leaving the house.
Brands can list schedules on their GMB pages that allow users to book a class or session at an available time. Businesses can even accept payment through the GMB interface, making it a seamless experience for customers and businesses alike.
Last but not least, the COVID-19 posts feature now included with GMB makes it easy for businesses to quickly provide updates to their audiences. These updates can be integrated within existing social media platforms or posted via GMB directly.
This is an effective solution that not only permits businesses to provide more elaborate details and up-to-date information, but can also be configured to list which services are currently available. For instance, a restaurant might only be offering drive-thru or takeout options: the restaurant can quickly begin pinging to Google this information so that future customers are not inconvenienced.
Ultimately, the pandemic won’t last forever. However, the range of utilities that have been unveiled for Google My Business will likely continue to have value for the foreseeable future. As such, we hope that these customizations will remain a part of GMB’s core permanently. In the short term, however, these options will help businesses be more responsible with regard to social distancing.