Google recently rolled out a new service, Google Posts, allowing websites to promote events, showcase new products or present promotions right in the search results. As of June 2017, this is available for all websites using Google My Business (GMB) and we encourage everyone to try this – at least once – to see if it can drive engagement.
Google Posts were actually launched in early 2016 (back then it was called Candidate Cards) and was solely available for political candidates. This made it possible for politicians to answer political questions right on Google’s results page. Later it became available for a handful of businesses and has now been rolled out globally.
What’s in It for Me?
Google Posts is mainly aimed towards local searches, and in consequence, local businesses. According to Google, 82 percent of people turn to Google for local information and therefore wanted to strengthen these types of results.
The function gives websites the option to show additional content in search. On mobile, it gets a very prominent position sitting at the top of the search results. On desktop, the posts show on the right hand side of the results page where you today see company information, maps, reviews etc.
Businesses can upload an image together with a title and a text up to 300 words. There’s also the option to add a call-to-action button saying “sign up”, “buy”, “reserve”, “learn more” etc. What you choose it’s basically up to what you promote. Perhaps you want to provide extra information about your company or maybe there’s a special item you want to promote.
This is how it will look:
Image credit: Google Blog
This function is supposed to give customers a one-click path to a purchase, sign-up or reservation. Google mentions these ways to use Google Posts:
- Share daily specials or current promotions that encourage new and existing customers to take advantage of your offers.
- Promote events and tell customers about upcoming happenings at your location.
- Showcase your top products and highlight new arrivals.
Start Using Google Posts in Three Steps
- If you haven’t already done it, the first step is to sign up with Google My Business
- In your GMB account, click on “Posts”
- Choose an image, write title and main text, and set a date span when the post will be visible for Google users. Also decide which call-to-action to use.
What Businesses Are Local Nowadays?
Even though Google Posts is aimed at local searches, there might be an option for others to benefit from it as well. Of course, a business like a restaurant is by definition local. If their post is, say, a menu, the audience is people who have the option to come there to dine.
However, if you take a walk down the local high street, you’ll see that a large portion of the businesses are both local and global. The local record shop, travel agent, and vintage store all have an online presence. Then you’ll see all offices. It might be real estate agents, web designers, accounting firms and all other offices where you wonder what people actually do during the day.
The same goes for these. Chances are that they are local and global at the same time.
When looking at it from this perspective, there are a lot of websites that could benefit from Google Posts. And the service is free, so why not try it and see if it can drive traffic, engagement and sales for you.