Any good business owner understands the importance of customer relationships. The internet makes it quick and easy for customers or clients to communicate with you, and vice versa. What you may not know, is that you can now live chat with your customers through your Google My Business account. In this blog, JumpSIX Marketing takes a look at this new feature, which is currently only available in the US.
If you’re not currently all that talkative with your customers online, then JumpSIX Marketing might have some additional advice for you too. Read on to find out more about this new Google advertising feature.
Who Is It For?
This new feature is designed for business owners and managers of a business’s online listings through Google My Business. It’s also be put in place to make it easier for customers and other people searching for a business or service to contact owners, managers or customer service teams. If it’s used right, it can be a great way to quickly answer questions, talk to people about your business, and increase your audience or customer base.
How Does It Work?
The process of setting it up is pretty easy. All you need to do is log into your Google My Business account and find the “Messaging” tab on the main menu. You’ll need to register a phone number to use this feature, so make sure it’s a business number that is manned by either you or specified staff who will be able to respond.
What are the benefits of this new feature? JumpSIX Marketing can list the biggest ones here:
- Improving customer relations. This is the most apparent, and also one of the most important. Talking directly to users allows you to create a bond and foster relationships. This means repeat customers who trust you.
- Improving your reputation. We’ve gone over how important being responsive online is on a past blog, and this is a great opportunity to build on it. If you can build a reputation for friendly, fast and informative communication, more people are like to contact your business.
- Addressing complaints before they become a problem. As with other elements of social media presence, responding to negative messages is important. Being able to head off a potential complaint through instant live chat rather than responding to a one-star review goes a long way toward bolstering your image.
What about drawbacks? Fortunately, there aren’t many, but the potential downsides do mostly come down to you using the feature responsibly:
- Delayed responses. If you opt to offer this feature, you need to be sure that someone is available to respond. Whether it’s you or a specific staff or team member, there should be someone ready to reply. If there are certain times when a response is unlikely, make sure your customers know.
- Damaging customer relationships. Not only is it important to message quickly, but it’s also important to do it responsibly. Being aggressive or disrespectful to customers over live chat, even if they seem to be itching for a fight, will only hurt you. Make sure whoever manages this feature understands this.
- Loss of sensitive information. Privacy is a big deal these days, and live chat environments can potentially be risky. Don’t use this chat feature for credit card numbers, social security information or login credentials — provide those contacting you with a more secure avenue for this kind of data.
Google My Business and Expanding Services
As we mentioned, this is currently only available in the US. Whether or not Google has plans to expand it worldwide is currently unknown, but future blogs from JumpSIX Marketing will keep you up-to-date as availability expands.
Contact JumpSIX Marketing Today
If you struggle to find the time to dedicate to managing your online presence, much less a digital advertising campaign, JumpSIX Marketing is here to help.We can give you professional and insightful advice, and you can leave the hard work involved in digital marketing to us. Take a look at the wide range of digital advertising services we provide or contact us about our full digital marketing services today.