Google wants to provide accurate information to searchers and you can help by keeping your business profile up to date. In today’s Tech News Tuesday episode, we’re talking about Google’s recently updated guidelines for managing your profile on search and maps.
Changes to How Operating Hours are Displayed
One of the key areas they addressed is publishing operating hours for businesses. It seems like a small detail, but it can have a big impact on how your business appears in search results. Google is now displaying hours on business profiles and using them to trigger specific filters for searches. For instance, if you search for a pizza shop near me, Google will automatically include an ‘Hours’ filter at the top of the map pack, allowing users to find open shops more easily.
Google uses the hours on your business profile to filter search results for queries that might include phrases like “open now”
If you try searches like ‘open now’ or ‘open late’, these also apply similar filters to the results. So, businesses need to ensure they publish their accurate and up-to-date hours to show up correctly in these time-based searches.
Local businesses should ensure their business hours are accurate and up to date.
Options for Business Hours
Google provides three types of hours that businesses can set. The Primary Hours are the main ones that display on the listing and are utilized for the search filters mentioned above. The second type is Special Hours. These are temporary adjustments or closures that can be set by day. For example on a holiday you are closed, it’s important to note this on your profile. Then there are More Hours. You can use the More Hours option to add details like Happy Hour, Pick Up Hours, or Online Service Hours.
On your Google Business Profile you can set primary hours for your normal business schedule and special hours to indicate things like holiday closures or extended hours.
Google also advises that certain types of businesses shouldn’t provide hours. These include those with varied event hours, like movie theaters, event venues, and schools, as well as businesses that operate only by appointment. One reason for this may be, in movie theaters for example, searchers are much more interested in the time a certain movie is shown, rather than the overall hours of the theater.
Google also advises that certain types of businesses, like movie theaters, shouldn’t provide hours. The show times are more relevant for searchers.
Have you looked at and updated your Google Business Profile lately? Remember the Google Business Profiles are now managed directly from Search and Maps, and you need to be logged in with a Google account which is an owner or manager of the profile.
The bottom line is this. It’s all about providing the best possible experience for your customers and making it easy for them to find businesses like yours!
Links in this episode: