Google’s Messaging tool gives businesses an easy way to engage with potential customers in real time. Available exclusively to merchants that use Google Business Profile (formerly Google My Business), Messaging gives people a way to get in touch without picking up a telephone or relying on email.
Instead, online visitors can contact the business in real time through the merchant’s business profile on Google. In order to use Google’s Messaging feature, merchants must enable notifications in the Business Profile Manager dashboard (formerly Google My Business dashboard), turn on Messaging, and agree to reply to all new messages within 24 hours. Merchants who do not reply to messages in a timely fashion risk having this feature deactivated and the message button removed from their business profile.
The Messaging feature is not well supported today for multi-location businesses. If you’re looking for a better option meant for multiple locations, a company like SOCi can help.
Messaging Guidelines for Merchants
To get the most out of Google’s Messaging feature, follow these best practices:
- Create an automated welcome message that customers receive when they contact your business.
- Never request or provide sensitive information to customers during online chats, including credit card numbers, social security numbers, or login credentials.
- Avoid sending messages about products or services that are unrelated to the customer’s original request.
- Conversations that take place in Messaging should focus on the business and services offered. Never send inappropriate content or unsolicited messages.
- Both consumers and merchants have the ability to mute or stop specific conversations at any time.
To learn more about using Google’s Messaging tool, read Google’s official messaging guidelines.