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Understanding Google My Business & Local Search

Google as the New Mobile Website

Yesterday at Streetlight Magazine during David Mihm’s and my conversation he noted:

You’ve been banging the drum for the last 12-18 months that for most businesses, Google Is the New Homepage. The reality is most customers are coming into your business digitally with Google as the front door.

But it feels like with all the new features Google has released during that time period, “Homepage” isn’t a sufficiently consequential descriptor. How about “Google Is the New Website?”

Google has been busy adding user and business owner content to the Knowledge Panel for the past year and, particularly on mobile, was beginning to obviously organize that information as a mobile website directly IN the Knowledge Panel. We noted the addition of videos, Google Q & A, Posts and the recently released Service Menu.

Well today they have further built out your mobile website by adding the traditional About tab to your “new website” (h/t to Sergey Alakov on Twitter). It is showing for all categories that I have checked although its presentation is dramatically different with hotels when accessed through the Local Finder rather than a brand search.

Typically it captures the many attributes that Google has been collecting over the past 18 months from Local Guides and if there are notable attributes they get highlighted visually. This is true of lawyers as well as restaurant.

As a note it appears (I am in a rush and couldn’t double check) that if you have the Service Menu you do not show the About Menu. And if you have no Posts that tab is missing as well:

Note that icons for quality and, in this case, LGBT friendly, are highlighted for a lawyer
This location has a Service menu which seems to be used instead of the About tab if available
Note the distinct presentation for hotels via the Local Finder