27 Jun Google My Business: What Information Is Visible to Users?
Google My Business has undergone a facelift. As with all cosmetic procedures, some will like the changes and others will have to get used to it.
Google+ started out as a social networking platform and eventually evolved into a resource for businesses. However, it appears that recent cosmetic changes to Google My Business attempt to make the pages more community-focused. Read on to learn how your business should deal with these updated platforms.
What Is the Difference Between Google My Business and Google+?
Google My Business is the management platform where you are able to manage individual Google+ Pages.
What Has Changed?
When I search for “SEO companies Lehi Utah,” I get the result above. The results from Google Maps show up because Boostability and other local companies have a Google My Business account with a Google+ page. Users can see reviews, as well as phone numbers, hours, and a link to the website. Not much has changed in regards to the displayed information within the initial Google search.
If I expand my search by clicking on “More places” or if I click on a specific company, I get the result shown below.
Again, the business information visible includes the address, reviews, phone number, and hours. You’ll notice that, while there is a prominent link to the website, there is not an obvious link to the company’s Google+ page.
On November 17th, 2015, Google announced the visual changes to Google+. So where are the changes?
If you navigate directly to a company’s Google+ page, you will notice the reviews, and a lot of the company information is gone. Google announced that they changed the site in response to feedback and a desire to focus on communities and collections. A community within Google+ is a group or forum where people can interact with a particular subject matter. A collection allows for a company to group and classify posts by topics.
The image above is the classic view of Google+. The reviews and business information appear to have been removed from the classic view as well.
The new version of Google+ emphasizes the communities and collections. (P.S. If you want to go back to the old version of Google+, scroll down to the bottom left of your screen and click on “Back to classic G+”).
While Google has made a lot of changes to Google+ recently, it is still helpful for your business to create and manage an account so you can interact with your clients. If you have a Google My Business account, you still have a chance to show up in the maps portion of a search result, where at least for now the business information is still visible.