Google My Business / Google Business Profile, is an invaluable digital asset for your business; however, in order to best leverage its prime position in search, it’s crucial to keep up with its many features and fields available to you. Services and Products are two such elements of Google My Business that help with optimization and customer engagement. That’s why knowing what they are, when they are available, and when to use them is so important.
What’s the Difference Between Products and Services?
Google My Business Products
The Google My Business Products feature, which is available in most verticals, is designed with small to medium businesses in mind and allows you to showcase your products on page-one of Google, for free, within your Google Business Profile Knowledge Panel. (This feature is different from Google’s Local Inventory Ads.)
Where do Products Show up on Google My Business?
Google My Business Products are visible to users in search on both desktop (see screenshot above) and mobile (toggle to the Products tab) and within Google maps on mobile devices (in the overview section, keep on scrolling down).
How Do I Add Products to My Google Business Profile?
Products can be added or updated from the Google Business Profile dashboard, see the product editor section, or even live in search if you are logged into the correct Google account.
When adding a product to the Product feature, the following fields are available:
- Price (fixed or range)
- Call-To-Action with Link For Button (Order Online, Buy, Learn More, Get Offer)
There is also a Google Post type for Products, which once again is only available to GMB listings with the Products feature. I caution against using the two interchangeably though. While products added via a Google Post will appear within the Product listings, have all the same fields, and can be organized into your pre-created custom categories, they will also be posted as a Google Post.
That’s handy if you’d like to give a little extra boost to a specific product at the time you’re adding the product itself, but less so if you have something else you’d rather be highlighting or promoting with the Google Posts feature at the same time. For instance, if you’re running a Google Post for a sales event but then add a couple products via the Google Posts feature instead of the Products feature, you’ve effectively buried the sales event post. Also, Product type Google Posts only last 7 days so with the rare exception, I recommend keeping your Post and Product efforts separate.
Google My Business Services
Unlike the Products feature, the availability of Google My Business Services is completely dependent on the categories selected for your Google Business Profile.
This feature can be accessed two different ways in the Google Business Profile backend. If you’re on the main Info screen, scroll down past the field for links and you should spot the section labeled Services. Click on the pencil icon to edit. This will take you to the dedicated Services area. Alternatively you can go directly there by clicking on the Services menu option on the left hand sidebar.
How to Add Custom & Suggested Services?
Once you are in the Services section, click the “+ Add another service” link under any of the categories to start adding relevant services. Some categories are preloaded with options to choose from, some are not, but all have the option to add custom services to create your own. Take the time to select and / or add any and all that apply to your business for each category.
For example, under the category Tire Shop, “tires” and “wheel alignment” were pre-loaded options, so we selected those but we also added “tire rotation” and “tire repair.”
The Services feature also offers a description field and a price field with the following options: No Price, Free, Fixed, or From. Once you’ve selected or added custom services to a category, you can circle back to add this information like so:
I will add that in our experience at PCG Digital, the Services fields, custom or pre-populated, are the most susceptible area to those pesky updates / suggested edits. It’s not uncommon for us to see selected or custom services crossed-out or new ones added by Google. So check them often and be prepared to roll with the punches or you’ll drive yourself insane with the whack-a-mole antics.
Where do Google My Business Services Show up?
Services are far less in-your-face than the Products feature on the live listings; they are only visible to mobile users within maps. And even then one has to navigate over to the Services section. From there, the services are listed under their respective categories.
They can also sneakily show up in search, which is helpful to your overall Google Business Profile optimization efforts. But not necessarily in the way you might think.
While the categories selected for your business listing are one of the known local ranking factors Google uses to decide when to display your listing in search and on maps, Services are not. Or at least it’s not confirmed or believed to be so at this time.
However, according to the Google Business Profile Help Center, “When local customers search on Google for a service you offer, that service may be highlighted on your profile.” So that’s something, might even help with CTR as your relevancy to the search query is accentuated.
So ultimately Google My Business Services might not be the slam dunk you were hoping they’d be, but that doesn’t mean you should write them off entirely. If Google presents you with an opportunity to provide more specific or custom details about your business to consumers, we recommend taking it.
With all of that said, Google My Business is ever-changing, so take advantage of Services and Products using what you learned here today, but always keep an eye out for new features and further advancements.
If you need assistance with creating products or services for your Google Business Profile / Google My Business listing or have any additional questions, feel free to contact PCG Digital!