Google Maps was a service launched in 2005, and since then, it has come a long way. Over the years, Google has brought about several changes to this service, and new features to improve customer interaction. One such feature that was introduced near the end of 2018, and is slowly making its way across GMB listings is Products.
Say you are a customer looking to purchase a certain kind of dish or item from a store. This feature would allow the store to put up a picture of their products onto the business listing. Hence, giving their customers an idea of what to expect when they purchase that particular product.
It allows you to group together products together under one umbrella term or phrase, so you have a collection of products. You can add individual product name and image while including a description, which is optional.
The question now is who exactly is given access to this particular feature. Since not all GMB listings will have this feature appear for them. Through the survey and research we have done, it appears mainly for some restaurants and businesses. This in turn is dependant on having categories Google feels will sell products in the store. Afterall, it makes sense since restaurants primarily sells food which are products of their store.
It is important to note that the Services feature is still possible to add for businesses in other categories. Some businesses had this feature removed and replaced with the Products feature. Hence, it can be deduced that either this new feature is being rolled out case by case basis, or perhaps on whether a business belongs to a category that specializes in either products or services.
Then again, if a business offers both products or services, there is nothing preventing them from offering both in their GMB listings. As for the overall picture, this indicates the continuing trend of Google wanting to take the center stage of local businesses. What these updates and tests tell us is that Google wants to keep you entering more information and images into your Google My Business account, but only Google itself will decide, based on your business type and various other unknown factors, where, how or even if that information is displayed.
The only thing you can do is to ensure that you keep up with the updates Google roll out, and fill out every information when possible. So that you are ahead of all the other businesses. Contact us if you have any questions!