New Google My Business changes will affect local businesses and their GMB listings. Service-based businesses like contractors, plumbers, roofers, carpet cleaners and more need to update their GMB listing as soon as possible so as to provide accurate information to potential customers.
Previously, businesses would list their address and that was it. However, as of yesterday, there is a new line in the info dashboard that reads “Add service area.”
Prior to this update, companies that served customers in an area around their business address would set their service area as a distance from their business address. For example, as you’ll see in the screenshot below, a flooring contractor that services the Portland area and 75 miles around the city could select that in their local GMB listing.
Now when you log-in though, you’ll see the following update (see image below), which reads “Update to service area selection: Choose specific cities, postal codes, and other areas.”
Google isn’t allowing the mile radius any longer. Companies must choose how to present their business to visitors in one of three ways:
- For companies that serve customers from a brick and mortar location, they enter their business address only.
- Companies that don’t serve customers at their address will now leave the address field blank and enter their service area using either specific city names or postal zip codes.
- Companies who serve customers at their business location plus have a service enter will use both fields – the address and service area fields.
For more details, visit the Google support page here:
Additionally, some businesses already ranking in the 3-pack no longer have their full address on display, even though they do have their main address in their listing. With the new changes, service-area businesses probably aren’t aware of the need to change their settings to add the new service areas.
It will be interesting to see the effects on local businesses already ranking in GMB listing and maps. But either way, if you have a service area business, it’s time to add your service area specifics to your listing so as not to lose any traffic or visitors to your site.