Google has recently announced a significant change in its services, impacting users who have relied on their free, basic websites created through Business Profiles. This move, scheduled to take effect in June of this year, comes with a set of deadlines and actions that site owners need to be aware of and take action on. This blog will help you learn about these changes and what to do going forward.
What is Being Changed?
As of March 2024, any visitors attempting to access websites created through Google Business Profile will find themselves redirected to the corresponding Business Profile page instead. This redirection will remain in place until June 10, 2024, at which point users will encounter a discouraging “page not found” error. This transition primarily affects domains with endings such as business.site and negocio.site. With only six months to adapt, site owners are urged to promptly reorganize their online presence to avoid any disruptions.
To ensure a smooth transition, site owners should follow a two-step process. Firstly, they should create a new website using one of the recommended website builders suggested by Google. These website builders include Wix, Squarespace, GoDaddy, Google Sites, Shopify, and WordPress. Once the new website is ready, owners must update their Google Business Profile with the new website address before the looming deadline.
How Google Ad Campaigns Are Changing
In addition to updating their Business Profile, users should also be mindful of any active Ads campaigns connected to the affected websites. To keep these campaigns running smoothly, it is essential to update the ads with links to alternative websites before March 1, 2024. Alternatively, site owners can opt to pause these campaigns if they are not ready to redirect the traffic to a new web address.
For those utilizing custom domain names to forward traffic to their affected websites, a similar redirection process applies. Visitors will find themselves redirected to the respective Business Profile until June 10, 2024. To avoid any disruptions, Google advises site owners to take action through their hosting companies and redirect their third-party domains to a different website before this crucial date.
What Action Should You Take?
This announcement from Google underscores the importance of promptly addressing the impending changes for those impacted by the website shutdown. Taking action within the provided timeline will help users avoid potential disruptions to their online presence and ensure a smooth transition to alternative websites.
Google’s decision to discontinue free, basic websites created through Business Profiles is a significant development that affects numerous site owners. To adapt to this change, site owners must create new websites using recommended website builders, update their Business Profiles, and address any Ads campaigns and custom domain name redirections before the respective deadlines. By following these guidelines, site owners can mitigate potential disruptions and maintain a strong online presence.
Of course, changes can be made at any time, such as critical ones like this. At Hometown Marketing Group, we adapt to policy updates and changes in record pace, ensuring our clients are always getting the most of their digital marketing and website exposure. If you are a business owner in the Collinsville, IL region and beyond, please contact us today!