New support links and call-to-actions allow small businesses to garner community and stakeholder donations during COVID-19.
Small businesses that are continuing to operate and maintain their operations may have another channel to help build capital, sustain their employee salaries, and provide services/goods to their communities. Google has announced the use of new support links via Google My Business, which allow businesses to collect donations from their respective communities. Businesses that have sustainable operational challenges due to COVID-19 can now add a new optimization to collect funds that help them during this economically tumultuous time.
Dominique McGown, the Program Manager for Local SMB Products at Google, explains that the new links also include the option to add new dining options (based on business type), digital gift cards, and other features so that businesses can continue to operate. The costs for businesses to use these features is minimal, according to the blog update. Per McGown:
Today, we’re rolling out support links for businesses to post directly to their Business Profiles on Google, starting first in the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand. With this feature, merchants will be able to add a donation link, gift card link or both to their profile. They can also share a personal message in their post to inform customers how funds will be put to use. These support links will be visible to consumers later this month.
At launch, we’ve partnered with PayPal and GoFundMe for donations. For gift cards, merchants can link directly to the relevant page on their website or to their gift card offerings with one of our eligible partners, which includes Square, Toast, Clover and Vagaro. While Google is not charging merchants or consumers any fees, there may be partner processing fees associated with campaigns.
The new links are another set of local SEO updates that help businesses with operational adjustments during the COVID-19 pandemic. As mentioned previously on the BWM blog, Google My Business features to enhance local SEO during the pandemic includes virtual transactions, new specialty announcements, and similar updates.
Businesses that want to add the links simply have to log into the Google My Business platform to get started. The on-screen modules will give instructions to managers for donations and offering links for their customers.
Additionally, aligning your local SEO with PPC efforts can also help to build upon marketing strategies that are successful under the complications of COVID-19. If you have any more questions about these strategies, just reach out to a member of our SEO and PPC team today!