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Are You Open for Business? Make Sure Potential Customers Know with Special Hours.

Nov 08, 2017   |   Conversion Best Practices
Are You Open for Business? Make Sure Potential Customers Know with Special Hours. -, Milestone Inc.

The holiday season is the busiest time of the year for retailers, including restaurants and spas. As a business owner, you do not want to miss any opportunity. One of the critical items that consumers are always searching for is your hours of operation – especially since businesses tend to offer extended hours this time of the year.

To make it easy for consumers to find holiday-specific hours, Google displays holiday hours differently. These hours are called “Special Hours.” If you schedule special hours for an official holiday using Google My Business (GMB), users will see that those hours are targeted for the holiday. If a business doesn’t provide special hours for these days on Google My Business, users on Maps and Search will be warned that business hours may differ on designated holidays.

For days when your business has an irregular schedule, like holidays or special events, you can enter special hours in advance. If you schedule special hours, your regular hours remain in place for all other days.

Does your business update its business hours on Google and Bing for holidays? If not, you could be missing out on customers during big shopping days like Memorial Day, Veterans Day and more.

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Businesses that update their listings with special hours appear in Google My Business with a special designation on the holiday, up to a week in advance. It is very clear that the location below has special holiday hours.

In the example below, you can see that special hours were not updated. Thus, it is not immediately clear to the person searching whether the store is open. They will have to go that extra step, if they choose to, and make a phone call.

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For example, our customer, a well-known jewelry chain, updated their special hours for Memorial Day 2017. We can easily see what kind of an impact that had on the Milestone customer appearing in non-branded search results – such as ‘jewelry stores near me’ – on the Memorial Day holiday 2017 vs. 2016. There was a 56% increase.

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Next you can see how many consumers found the jewelry chain via Google Search and Google Maps: there was a 53% increase in views on the Memorial Day holiday.

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But how do we know that this translated into more in-store traffic and actual revenue? A year over year 91% increase in searchers requesting directions after they searched.

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Milestone Local is a Local SEO software that manages your business listings across the entire local search ecosystem.  Milestone Local is capable of scheduling special hours and updating Google and Bing in real time. Also supported is bulk update of special hours for group locations. This can save time since users can update multiple locations at once. Milestone Local also:

  • Allows you to scan and verify business information in real time
  • Establishes accurate and consistent business information – URL, Name, Address and Phone Number (UNAP) – across the ecosystem to build a strong local presence
  • Enhances your conversions by eliminating duplicate listings and maintaining consistent UNAP information
  • Pushing business information to sources that matter – Google+ Local, Bing Local, Yelp, and key data aggregators including Factual, Acxiom, InfoUSA, Localeze, IYPs, along with crucial local ecosystem partners, all via bulk feed or API integration
  • Manages multiple locations and brand listings using a single interface
  • Is integrated with Google My Business. Review your listing status to see if it has been merged and verified.

Search engines are constantly evolving, and new trends and technologies keep emerging. By using Milestone Local your business is always presented correctly in the right channels every time. Milestone Local takes your local search efforts beyond the ordinary by integrating with the channels most relevant to your industry and target customers. To learn more about Milestone Local, contact us at [email protected] or call us at +1 408 492 9055.

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