Over the weekend, many of our clients received emails that look like this:
Though the timing was unexpected, the action was not. Over the last several years, we’ve seen Google start to phase out more and more of Google+ features in favor of Google My Business (GMB) listings. With recent changes including the addition of questions and answers, business descriptions, and GMB posts, the SEO industry has been waiting for this news to break.
Our response to the news is “Let ‘em go.” Aside from cutting down on clutter and confusion for both our clients and their patients, it’s a matter of resource allocation. If your practice has been using Google+ as a social tool, and you find it valuable in communicating with potential/current patients or for other aspects of your business, then you probably didn’t even get this email and you can carry on. However, most of our clients focus on more valuable channels, such as GMB and Facebook posts.
We do not expect any SEO implications from this change. Since Google+ posts were rarely found in search results and seemed to have very little, if any, impact on rankings on local businesses. While one could argue their relevance for bigger brands, it’s harder to say that small businesses received that benefit.
Since your GMB listing (and associated reviews) remain untouched by this change, we recommend allowing these unused profiles to go the way of the dinosaurs of SEO past. As always, we’ll keep you updated if anything changes and if you have any additional questions, feel free to reach out to your account manager or our support team.