Google is limiting the functionality of the Google My Business Listing due to the current COVID-19 situation. In times like these, Google wants to make sure that they are providing the most up to date and accurate information to its users.
What This Means For Innkeepers & Lodging Professionals:
Reviews & Replies on Hold
- When someone leaves a review of your property -positive or negative- it will not be posted.
- Additionally, replies to reviews are not being published at this time.
- It is unclear if these reviews will be posted at a later date or permanently diverted from the public eye.
Google Questions & Answers:
- Google’s Q&A feature has been temporarily removed from business profiles
Other Google My Business Limitations:
For all changes to Google Business Listings, Google is prioritizing health-related businesses over all others so any changes you make may be postponed. This includes claiming businesses, receiving listing verifications, and editing business information. If you are editing your business descriptions, operating hours, open and closed states, business attributes, or temporary closures, you can expect an undetermined delay in your changes being published.
How to communicate your updated business information:
- Make your Google Business Changes. They will be delayed, but better late than never. Make sure to change your edits back to usual as soon as things return to normal.
- Facebook & Social Media. Keep your followers updated on the state of your business, whether you are currently open, limiting functionality, or temporarily closing until this all blows over. Try adding a header photo with text stating your current business state like ‘Still Open & Accepting Reservations’ or ‘Temporarily Closed for COVID-19 Safety’. This lets users immediately know your status.
- Make a blog post. Write a blog post about any updates or changes to your business. You can link to this on your homepage.
During this confusing and uncertain time, different businesses and services will react in their own way. As statuses change, we will share the information we find relevant to the independent lodging community. Until then, stay safe, wash your hands and take care of one another!