If you’re running a paid campaign and using Google Places, you’ve probably noticed a switch from Google Places to My Business Locations (formerly Google Places for Business), an automatic upgrade that recently occurred.This upgrade to My Business Locations has also changed Location Extensions within Google Adwords. The main impact for local marketers is in the way Location Extensions are set-up within the Adwords account(s). Manually entering addresses is no longer an option, and any existing extensions that were manually entered will no longer run.
To run location extensions, you have to link My Business and Google Adwords accounts. Instead of adding multiple location extensions, advertisers now add a single location extension to the campaign(s) with the email address associated with the My Bussiness account. Once that is completed, all addresses within the My Business account are eligible to show as Location Extensions for those campaigns.
As more consumers search online for local business information such as hours, phone number and location, having these location extensions is crucial. The red box in the example below shows how a location extension appears in the ad:
Luckily, Google doesn’t make it difficult to take advantage of the upgrade. They provide plenty of resources to navigating the change, and we’ve compiled some of our favorites/most useful.
General information on Google My Business Locations: https://support.google.com/business/answer/6002002
An article noting the differences between Google Places and My Business Locations: https://support.google.com/business/answer/3038166?hl=en
Especially important for local marketers managing multiple locations, an article about managing 10+ locations: https://support.google.com/business/answer/6002011#changes
Have you noticed the upgrade for locations you manage? What's your experience been? Let us know in the comments below.