Google’s perpetual experimentation with its Business Profiles interface continues with the introduction of the New Merchant Experience (NMX). Despite the passage of time, it appears that Google is still exploring ways to enhance or at least alter the user experience.
The NMX presents a breath of fresh air, whether we embrace it willingly or not. But what specific changes does it bring? To help you adapt to these modifications, we’re taking a close look at the revamped Google Business Profile manager.
A Fresh Approach to Engaging with Your Google Business Profile
For those deeply entrenched in managing Google Business Profiles, this change was anticipated. However, for those unaware, the Google NMX brings forth a multitude of innovations.
Google’s New Merchant Experience introduces an updated interface and a set of new features within the Google Merchant Center. This new Google Merchant experience offers:
- A user-friendly interface for configuring Merchant Center accounts.
- Improved tools for organizing and optimizing product data.
- Comprehensive insights into performance metrics.
- Integration with various other Google services.
- Enhanced troubleshooting and support resources.
Perhaps the most significant change is the capability to edit business information directly from the search engine results page (SERP), eliminating the need to use the GBP dashboard.
The conventional process of managing a Google Business Profile used to entail:
- Choosing between Edit, Photos, and Update/Post options.
- Each icon directing you to a distinct interface for various actions.
- The Edit option allowed you to modify extensive business information.
- The Photos section led to a rather cumbersome interface for managing images.
- The Update/Post feature facilitated posting fresh content or “updates” for your business.
The New Merchant Experience aims to simplify the editing procedure.
From the SERPs, clicking on the three dots at the upper right corner of your business takes you to a list of actions you can perform:
- Access your Business Profile settings.
- Manage Google reviews and notifications.
- Add a new Business Profile.
- Handle your business profiles, if multiple.
Image from: Search Engine Land
Although this major shift might startle Google Business Profile managers, once acclimatized, it streamlines profile management significantly.
So, What’s Different?
Now, let’s delve into the substantial alterations introduced by the Google My Business Profile manager:
- The dashboard is gone: As previously mentioned, this change was highlighted earlier. For a while, managers could alternate between the old and new interfaces, but that’s no longer the case, and in-SERP editing is the new norm.
- Metrics removed: The “photo insights” and “how customers search for your business” sections have been eliminated. Photo insights were hardly dependable, and the latter redundant given similar data could be gleaned from Google Analytics.
- Inconsistent interface: Despite its full-scale rollout, Google NMX still exudes a beta-version vibe. While certain settings are accessible from the SERP, others direct you to the old interface.
- Features renamed: All “posts” are now relabeled as “updates,” while “users” have become “managers.” For most users, this necessitates only a brief period of adapting to the new layout.
- Directions instead of location info: Instead of displaying location information when someone seeks directions or searches for your business, your Google Merchant account shows direction requests.
- SERP-based multiple profiles: With the removal of your Google Business Profile management dashboard, you can now access all your profiles from the SERP. Here, you can determine which businesses you’re currently managing and effortlessly switch between them.
Do These Changes Hold Merit?
These changes aren’t centered around introducing flashy performance insights and metrics. Nevertheless, a shift in perspective reveals that these recent Google modifications are quite advantageous.
Through our time spent exploring Google NMX, we’ve identified several benefits not just for our SEO team but also for average end-users. Key advantages of this Google update are:
- Streamlined onboarding process: Google simplifies creating new profiles and getting them up and running swiftly.
- Efficient product data management: Updating product data is now effortless, ensuring customers easily access needed information.
- Advanced troubleshooting and support: The new support system promptly addresses queries.
- Enhanced overall user experience: With the updated design and tools, website navigation is improved for customers.
Two additional advantages within Google NMX to leverage are:
Enhanced GBP Editing Procedure
The most significant boon of the new Google Merchant experience is its simplicity. Editing via the SERP is far more convenient than navigating a separate dashboard. Coupled with multi-profile access, managing multiple businesses becomes rapid. The New Merchant Experience facilitates the following:
- Adding, editing, and removing a Google Business Profile manager.
- Locating linked accounts.
- Managing notifications, including Google Business reviews, bookings, and quotes.
- Directly accessing multiple Business Profiles from the SERP.
- Incorporating a new business account.
This comprehensive consolidation streamlines the process significantly.
Improved Review Management
A noteworthy, unmentioned improvement lies in review management. On the SERP, notifications surface when users leave Google reviews for your business. This user-friendly interface can be supplemented with review management services to automate more aspects of the review process.
Additionally, there’s no need to educate business owners on navigating the Google Merchant dashboard. Instead, instruct them to:
- Search for their business name.
- Click the three-dot button.
- Opt for their desired action.
In the context of local SEO services, trading certain redundant metrics for enhanced Google review management capabilities seems a reasonable compromise. In the long run, this allows you to deliver greater value to clients and simplify their experience.
Operating within Google NMX: Insights from Experts
So, how can you make the most of the New Merchant Experience?
Tip 1: Familiarize Yourself with Google NMX
As with any new tool, dedicate time to explore Google NMX’s features. Google’s help center can provide a quick guide to managing your business profile via the SERP.
Take the time to become acquainted with the NMX interface and its features and gain a thorough understanding of the available tools and functionalities that will assist you in effectively optimizing your product data and tracking performance metrics.
By testing it out, you contribute to shaping the Google Merchant experience, even if the initial encounter is somewhat uncomfortable. So, plunge in and acquaint yourself with all features and their workings.
Tip 2: Uphold Local SEO Best Practices
Superb tools notwithstanding, success isn’t guaranteed. Employ your familiar local SEO strategies to ensure high SERP rankings for your business.
The standard practices apply: optimize structured data, maintain consistency in citations and your business’s name, address, and phone number (NAP), and address technical aspects.
Maximize the insights offered by NMX for a robust local SEO approach. According to Romero, this involves:
- Analyzing data and recognizing trends.
- Understanding user behavior.
- Optimizing product listings accordingly.
The only alteration is that you must employ the New Merchant Experience. As demonstrated in the case of a local mechanical HVAC company, blending updated SEO strategies with a responsive website design and SEO-focused copy yields remarkable outcomes.
Case Study: Local HVAC Company
Tip 3: Garner More Reviews
Google Business reviews play a pivotal role in bolstering visibility and reputation. With the new Google Merchant experience, managing reviews becomes simpler than ever, facilitating efficient notification management.
As a rule, respond promptly to both positive and negative reviews. Encourage honest feedback from customers as well. When managing reviews, address concerns, offer solutions, and express gratitude for feedback.
This fosters trust with potential customers and cultivates an image of transparency for your business.
Tip 4: Consider Review Management Services
On occasion, outsourcing review management proves more convenient. Experts can be hired to handle reviews, including responding to and flagging inappropriate content.
Review management services also elevate your business’s visibility through reputation marketing and search. They collaborate with you to project your brand positively, nurturing a favorable brand image.
A case study of a multi-location restoration and reconstruction firm illustrates the potential benefits. By enlisting a digital marketing agency proficient in reputation management, SEO, and social media management, the firm expanded its reach and fortified its sectoral reputation.
Up-to-Date SEO Strategies that Yield Results
And that’s a wrap on the New Merchant Experience update. These changes may not boast glamour, but their utility is undeniable.
Speaking of utility, Leadshouse’s digital marketing team assists you in formulating a roadmap to success. We devise a comprehensive strategy encompassing SEO, content marketing, social media, and more.
From refining your Google Business Profile to automating Google reviews for business, our experts are poised to harness these updates and beyond for your business.
Realize your SEO and digital marketing potential and visit our website today!