Perhaps you’ve noticed the new Q&A section in Google Maps application listings. Maybe you have some questions about it or just ignored it completely. That’s why we are here: to help you sort it all out. This helpful new feature was introduced this past summer as a new feature on Google Maps app on Android. It’s referred to as Questions & Answers and it’s available on mobile browsers as well. Check out Search Engine Land for a handy graphic on where to find it. The Q&A can make a nice complement to your online marketing strategy for your eldercare website.
As the owner of a home care business, it’s imperative that you are accessible to people looking for you. Your core demographic — older females looking for care for their aging parent — is searching for you right now. They have to be able to locate you, first of all. Then, it has to be easy for them to get the information they need. That’s where this Q&A feature comes in handy. They can pose questions themselves so that they’re posted for everyone else to see, or they can simply read through other existing questions in hopes of finding the answers they need.
Let’s go over some of the features for the new Google My Business Q&A:
Don’t see the feature on listings? That’s OK, you probably just need to update the app in the Play Store. You won’t get notifications yet when a user responds. This may come in time, but not yet. It’s likely a bug that needs to be corrected. If you want to be notified about questions submitted by customers, you have to have the Google Maps app and sign in with your Google account. Important: use the account you use for Google My Business. When looking to see who reached out to you, you’ll notice the profile and name of whoever asked the question. On the main screen, you’ll see just the question, and you may be confused as to who sent it. Just click on the question to view the information and you will see what you need.
How to Respond
As a local eldercare company, you want to do as much as you can to stand out from the competition. This means responding to all questions quickly, succinctly and compassionately. Other companies can get away with quick yes or no answers, such as pizza joints or retail shops. Not you. It’s important to get to the point but elaborate on your answer for the benefit of not just that one person asking the question but for everyone else that comes along to view it.
Elaborate on Your Answer
Why? Let’s says you answer a question with a simple yes or no as to whether you offer a particular service. Let’s say you answer yes to something and then the user goes back later to edit the question. If they wanted to harm your reputation, they could type in “have you been fined by OSHA” or “have you overbilled Medicaid for fraudulent home care services.” A simple yes could make you look very, very bad. If you take the time to enhance your answer, you can see why a change in the question simply wouldn’t make sense. Just trust us and stay ahead of the spammers!
This is when other people “like” a question, causing it to show up in the listing itself without the need for further clicks. Google says up-voting makes popular questions more visible. So, questions that everyone seems to want to know the answer to will appear front and center. Another helpful feature of the Q&A.
Clean Up Listings
Of course, it goes without saying, in order to maximize your visibility on local search, you need to update your Google My Business information and make sure all directory listings are perfect. Check spelling and make sure all listings are the same in terms of address, phone number, etc. Remember, Google considers a wide variety of factors in ordering results, says Website Magazine.
It’s almost certain that Google will be making more tweaks and changes to this feature, especially with it being so new. Check with Google often to learn updates, and don’t forget to update and refresh your app as needed.
Contact A Servant’s Heart Web Design and Marketing
If you would like to know more about how Google My Business Q&A operates, we can offer insight into how your elder care business can benefit from it. Contact us at 760-744-8200. A Servant’s Heart Web Design and Marketing, specializing in SEO and online marketing, helps you emerge head and shoulders above the rest of your competition online. Get in touch for a free website SEO consultation today so we can get started!