Google has announced that it will disable the websites that were created using Google Business Profiles, a feature that allowed businesses to create a simple online presence for free. The websites will be shut down on March 1, 2024, and users will be redirected to the Business Profiles of the businesses instead. Google has provided some alternatives for businesses that want to maintain their own websites, such as creating a new website with other tools, managing Ads campaigns, managing third-party domains, and seeking additional help.
Websites Made with Google Business Profiles
Google Business Profiles, formerly known as Google My Business, is a service that allows businesses to create and manage their online presence across Google, including Search and Maps. Businesses can provide information such as their name, address, phone number, hours, photos, reviews, and more.
One of the features of Google Business Profiles was the ability to create a free website based on the information provided by the business. The website would have a simple and mobile-friendly design, and a domain name that followed the format of businessname.business.site. Businesses could also customize their website with themes, photos, and text.
Shutting Down of Websites
Google has decided to discontinue the website feature of Google Business Profiles, citing low usage and feedback from users. According to Google, most businesses prefer to have more control and flexibility over their websites, and the website feature did not meet their needs.
The websites will be disabled on March 1, 2024, and users who visit them will be redirected to the Business Profiles of the businesses instead. Google will also stop supporting the website feature, and businesses will not be able to edit or update their websites after that date.
Alternatives for Businesses
Google has provided some alternatives for businesses that want to keep their own websites, or create new ones. These include:
- Creating a new website with other tools: Google recommends using Google Sites, a free and easy-to-use tool that allows users to create and publish websites. Google Sites also integrates with other Google services, such as Drive, Calendar, and Forms. Businesses can also use other website builders, such as Wix, Squarespace, or WordPress, to create their own websites.
- Managing Ads campaigns: Google suggests using Google Ads, a service that allows businesses to create and run online advertising campaigns. Google Ads can help businesses reach potential customers, increase traffic, and grow their sales. Businesses can also use Google Ads to promote their Business Profiles, and track their performance and results.
- Managing third-party domains: Google advises businesses that have their own domain names, such as businessname.com, to manage them through Google Domains, a service that allows users to buy and manage domain names. Google Domains also offers features such as email forwarding, DNS management, and privacy protection. Businesses can also use Google Domains to connect their domain names to their Google Sites or other website builders.
- Seeking additional help: Google encourages businesses to seek additional help from Google’s support team, or from Google’s partners, such as web developers, agencies, or consultants. Google’s support team can provide guidance and assistance on how to use Google’s products and services, such as Google Business Profiles, Google Sites, Google Ads, and Google Domains. Google’s partners can offer more specialized and customized services, such as website design, development, optimization, and maintenance.