Not A New Way - But Easier to Use
Google's New Business Texting Feature
By Tiffany P.
Do you love to text? That is alright if you don’t, but many of your clients do. To keep up with Facebook Business Messenger, Google rolled out at the beginning of July “Let Customer Message You.” A new feature in your Google My Business setting you can turn on text messages (SMS).
Look for “Chat” in on your Home menu of your Google My Business page.
Follow the instructions to get your business phone number added to the instant messaging service. READ the FINE PRINT! So many people no longer read the fine print, but be sure to read before agreeing to the terms. I can't stress this enough. Although, this is a great feature for many business owners, by enabling this tool you're allowing Google certain access to your text messages. What information you ask?
Good question - it took a day and a lot of pestering Google to find out what data they collect. Because Google is so secretive I didn't get a lot of information. But was told general information like, location of the person sending the text and the location of the person receiving the text. Okay, not to bad. But Google now has the following warning on their information page (not the actual sign up page):
Avoid sensitive content
Make sure that you don’t provide or request sensitive information during a chat with customers. Sensitive information includes, but is not limited to:
- Credit card numbers
- Social Security or other government identification numbers
- Login credentials, like passwords
This is probably just a precaution for Google not to held responsible for any credit card fraud or hacking, but there still is that underlining tone.
Google give local businesses and web designers some amazing tools. This particular tool might not be right for everyone, but it doesn't hurt to find out more about it.
If you haven't signed up for the Google My Business - a free service that Google offers to local business owners I highly recommend you get on the ball. It takes approximately two weeks to verify your business listing. During that time you can be adding images, customizing your page, adding your operational hours, linking back to your website and a tune more other items.
Now after reading all of that you're still stuck on Google is trying to keep up with Facebook Instant messaging feature for your business page. You have a lot more work ahead of you.