Google Posts: What could they mean for your business?
As we know, Google is always looking to improve its algorithms and the services it provides its users; with this in mind, they have recently brought out 'Google Posts' (albeit only in America at the moment.) Originally tested during the 2016 U.S elections, Google Posts offered candidates the ability to submit updates that would appear directly in search engine results when people searched for them.
But what exactly are they and are they worth doing?
Now fully launched across America, Google Posts appear as drop-down information on any Google Business page. This helps users to access critical and relevant information. Ideal for any small business, the posts appear as cards in the SERPs and feature various calls-to-action. It also allows for social sharing to Facebook, Google and Twitter. Following the launch, Google said:
"Posting on Google is a new way to share relevant, fresh content with the people who are searching for you. Use image, videos and animated GIFs to engage your audience and ad in-line links to drive traffic to specific content. This enhanced format allows searches to hear directly from you and complements existing results from across the web."
Any business that has registered for Google Plus/Google My Business will have the opportunity to include these Google Posts on their business pages. Displayed on both desktop and mobile platforms, Posts will take a prominent position in the search engine ranking positions (SERPs). Designed to increase click-through rates and higher levels of engagement, they could well be a vital tool for any small business wanting to generate more traffic on its website; be it a local builder or a jewellery business selling products online. While it's not currently out here in the UK, it won't be far away if it's well received in America. So it's worth doing something about it now and registering your interest. However, you will need to sign up to a waiting list; but don't worry, you can do that by visiting https://www.google.com/intl/en_uk/business/.
How to use Google Posts
Once you have been approved, Google Posts are very easy to use. Just log on to your Google My Business account, select 'Create a Post' and follow the options. Google Posts will allow you to post a wide range of information; from events and videos to animated GIFs and text-based posts. You can therefore use Google Posts to provide your potential customers with more relevant information about not only your business, but also your individual services too. Similar to the 'snippets' you can often see on Google's search results now, you will also have the ability to post short and sweet nuggets of information that can link to relevant pages on your website. For example, if you're a cleaning company, add a small note about 'how to clean marble' and link it to your marble cleaning page.
Add credibility to your online presence
Following approval from Google, your posts will be accompanied by a blue tick (similar to those shown on verified Twitter accounts, for example). This will show potential customers and website visitors that you have been endorsed by Google, adding a real credibility to your online presence. It will also make potential visitors more likely to click on your posts and, indeed, the links to your website.
It's too early to say if it will influence your rankings
At the moment, Google has not said whether it expects the Google Posts feature to be taken into account as a ranking factor in search. It must be said though, that it's very unlikely it's going to have a negative impact on the SERPs, so Posts are well worth investigating for your small business.
However, posts will potentially help your click-through rate
Although it's very early days, it doesn't take a genius to realise that your website's click-through rates could benefit. If used properly, Google Posts will not only draw the eye and add credibility to your site but subsequently improve CTR in the process.
Will it be worth your time?
There's nothing to suggest that it wouldn't be worth investigating further if you run a small business. Adding more relevant information for potential visitors can never be classed as a bad thing. Plus, having Google add real credibility to your business could well be the key ingredient to better future click-through rates. That being said, Google Posts is still in its infancy and hasn't even been launched in the UK yet. It's certainly something that you could put in the 'wait and see' category at the moment. But, it may well be worth signing up to the aforementioned waiting list regardless. Make sure you look out for more Google Post-related articles and information here at the Smart Domain Group. Based in Kent, we operate throughout the South East and the rest of the UK, providing small and medium-sized businesses with the very best web design, search engine optimisation, branding, marketing and copywriting services. Contact us today on 01634 810600 to discuss your marketing needs with one of our friendly team.