Google My Business is adding new features to the Search and Maps applications for stores that offer delivery and pickup. This comes as part of a larger change, with many new enhanced AI features also beginning to appear.
While Google hopes to roll these additions out to other locations and delivery partners in the future, as a starting point for the experiment, they are being solely tested with Instacart and Albertsons Cos. stores in the US. They are also hoping to add this feature to Maps soon.
While this new information will be added behind the scenes, meaning you won't have to do anything manually, it's still worth knowing how this could relate to your business and how you can use it to your advantage.
In this news post, I'll be sharing everything you need to know so far about the updates and touching on some of the ones still to come.
What new information is available in Google My Business?
Google My Business has seen plenty of change recently, with the tech giant testing price estimates in local listings, as well as supplying information on how visitors found you and rolling out desktop messaging, among many other improvements.
The newest updates will primarily affect grocery stores with local listings, with an aim to help shoppers find the most convenient delivery and pickup options close to them — and that will best suit their budgets.
The new information Google is adding is believed to be collated automatically from details given to delivery providers and will include particulars like:
- Delivery providers or couriers
- Delivery and pickup windows
- Order fees
- Order minimums
Here's a look into what to expect if the tech giant rolls this out for good:
Google is also planning to partner with US Supermarket Fred Meyer to launch a pilot of innovative grocery stores that will harness the joint power of Maps and online orders to organise kerbside pickup. Once an order has been placed on a store's app, you'll be able to add this to Maps so stores can provide you with best time estimates of when to leave and allow you to share your location so the whole pickup process can run much smoother. You can see an example of how this would work below.
What else can we expect to see?
As Google works towards creating a better mobile app for users, a focus on developing AI features will be apparent. However, all of these are first being trialled in the US and may be a while until they get sign-off for use in other locations. Here are just a few of the advancements we could be seeing:
Indoor live views
Google's Live View application will begin to show the inside of travel hotspots including airports, train and bus stations, and shopping centres. They also hope to make further advancements on clarifying the size, scale, and location of objects within a building.
Updated directions feature in Maps
Maps have been refreshed to offer a better directions interface that aims to show a much more comprehensive view of how long it will take you to get your destination without the need to toggle between apps.
Should this be carried out, it'll no doubt be advantageous to the proposed Maps project to organise smoother pickup times based on location sharing.
Eco-friendly driving instructions
Eco-friendliness is becoming more important to us all, and Google is listening. As well as the updated directions feature, you can also expect to see the following rolled out soon:
- Eco-friendly driving routes: This would be a fantastic step for all businesses working towards their eco-credentials, particularly if a lot of deliveries and travel is involved.
- Low emission zone notifications
- Weather and air quality layers
What does all of this mean for marketers?
If these features expand beyond the US and the select stores that are currently part of the trial, the updated features in Google My Business can be very helpful in reducing bounce rates on your site. This is because potential customers will have access to even more information at face value, such as order fees and minimums upfront, meaning they can quickly decide if your site is for them or not before clicking onto it. Should the upgrades carry over to the UK, make sure your delivery providers are clued up with all these details, as it looks as though these will be done on Google's end rather than anything you can add input with.
The AI features will enhance the shopping experience for your customers, with the indoor Live Views helping those in a rush to get in and out of your shop efficiently, which will hopefully contribute to more people shopping with you.
Here at Glass Digital, we can keep you up to speed with all of the latest Google updates and help to improve your local SEO results. Why not get in touch today for a free consultation with one of our organic search experts?