Google has just rolled out a new Google Posts option for verified Google My Business users. Not all categories are available as yet (Travel and Accommodation are being held back for the moment), but plenty of business could be taking advantage of this new call to action.
The roll out of Google Posts enables verified Google Businesses to pitch content, events and offers to their prospective customers and clients straight from Googles organic search results.
The service is aimed at local businesses and is not available for brand advertising through Google + But only the Google My Business dashboard.
At this stage, Google Posts will last around seven days and appear in the knowledge panel on the right-hand side of branded search results.
Event cards will show until the event has occurred.
Posts show up quickly in Google search results – in only a few minutes.
Looking for an opportunity to get on the first page of Google? This may be a simple way to get you there.
Using a Carousel display a business could potentially add up to 10 posts at any one time. Desktop displays will show up to 300 characters in the post while mobile devices will show 100 characters.
Something else I really liked about the idea of this service is that all the posts can be shared via social media.
Creating your First Post in Google Posts is Super Simple
Once you have logged into Google head over to Google My Business.
Select a business you wish to promote and Choose “Manage Location”. If your business is eligible, you will see an option to post in the right-hand menu pane.
In this section, you will also be able to view insights into your posts reach and views later on.
The user insights are very simple with Google show you the number of views and clicks.
Once you select the post, you will be able to enter in up to 300 characters. Make it short, sharp and Punchy.
You will also be able to add a high-resolution image. Google recommends 720 by 720 pixels as a minimum. At this stage, there’s no support for video or animated GIFs.
You will be able to edit or crop the image in order to show the most significant portion of your graphic.
After you have entered your text an image, you can choose a call to action.
The calls to action include:
- Learn More
- Sign Up
- Get Offer
A link to your service, product or offer can be placed under these calls to action. As the service grows in popularity, we are likely to see a greater number of options in the call to action section.
Users viewing the result in Google search will only see the first 100 characters initially. However, once they click on your post, they will be able to see the entire Post as a pop-up overlay.
For Google mobile users, you will first need t- open the Google My Business app.
If you look at the bottom right-hand corner of your screen you’ll see an option to create a post.
- Tap the Google Post icon
- In the create post areaWill have an option to add your event, service or product along with text and photos
- You can also add the button option and relevant link
You will be able to preview your Google posted before you go live. If you are happy with its appearance you can select publish which you’ll find in the right-hand corner at the top of your screen.
For a full read of how to use theGooglel Post Service, including its terms and conditions, head over to Google.
This is truly a simple product for small business to use. It is quick, and it is easy. Whether it is effective remains to be seen.
If small business are smart and selective with their calls to action – and highlight products and services carefully – they may find an increase in traffic and a corresponding uptake in their services or products.
At this stage, the search results that display the posts appear to depend on brand searches and a clearly aimed at local business.
Of course with popularity also comes the potential for spam. It will be interesting to see how Google handles these short lifespan products when it comes to spam and misuse.
Some Tips for Using Google Posts in Google My Business
- Keep your office simple and focused on one idea
- Yes strong emotive language
- Use dynamic images
- Include a prominent feature or benefits
- Avoid childish promises and guarantees
Business name as it will already appear in the post.So don’t use up characters on unnecessary branding.
Google first experimented with the service during the last election. Most recently they gave celebrities and other non-entities in Brazil a chance to trial the service. The global release will really put it to the test.
As it all things, the goal is to stand out from the crowd. Consider the design of your post carefully and the target audience.
Avoid industry jargon. Your sales pitches and calls to action need to be succinct and trustworthy if you are to avoid future ad blindness.
We have seen many products come and go in Google. Google Buzz, Reader, Base and Authorship – just to name a few.
Time will tell whether this product meets the needs of small businesses online.