Over the last few days, there has been a lot of buzz about Google upgrading its Business Performance APIs which may have impacted the insights visible on dashboards.
So here’s a quick clarification. Google is enhancing its APIs to present sharper insights into digital business listings.
As it stands, the algorithm that powers Google Search has not been modified to cause any impact on the online visibility of businesses. In simple terms, it’s just that the manner in which Google measures ‘Views’ on Google Business Profiles (GBP) through Maps and Search, has been changed. This is a positive move. To make a special note, this is not something to be worried about. It is rather going to be useful for businesses.
Let’s try to simplify this development further. Now onwards, Google will basically present multiple user views over a 24-hour time-frame, as 1 view (for each user). It means that a certain chunk or percentage of all views will now onwards be reported as compared to earlier, where multiple views were counted as many times. Putting it simply, Google used to present Absolute Views earlier, and henceforth it will present Unique Views.
So for example, suppose a business profile listing was viewed on Google Search or Maps 5 times through multiple scrolls in a day, by a particular user. Earlier, it used to be reported as 5 different views. But now it will be counted as 1 view in 1 day, for that particular user.
A ‘View’ previously on GBP would tell us that a business profile popped up as a Search result and viewed somewhere on a user’s screen, if they browsed Google Search, or as a Google Map result. This could either have come from a map pin along with multiple other businesses or a map-pack search result in the local vicinity.
A ‘View’ on GBP, will henceforth be counted as a “Unique User View,” which is the number of times a business profile will be seen by a unique/individual user in the course of a 24-hour period. Whether a user has seen it only once or twice or even 50 times, will not be tracked as separate counts. It will all count as 1, within 24 hours. So if 5 different people, end up visiting a business profile 30 times with all their search activity, it will all be counted as 5 unique views (1 view per person).
Looking at the strengthening digital connect between consumers and businesses, it is important to put this in perspective keeping business listings and profiles in mind. The 1-view-per-user in a 24-hour period approach more clearly conveys a consumer’s intent. This upgrade overall, is one of the key pieces of Google’s augmented performance measurement plan, as a part of this API change development
With the above said and done, here’s a little more about the parameters which are being impacted as a result of this shift.
The following metrics will no longer be available:
– Total Searches (Direct & Indirect)
– Photo views
– Photos Count
– Local Post Views
– Local Post Clicks count
Also, certain metrics have now been renamed and split. Hence ‘Views’ for Maps and Search, will now be represented with a device-based bifurcation. Like this:
Views on Maps:
– Will display Business Impressions on Desktop Maps
– Will display Business Impressions on Mobile Maps
Views on Search:
– Will display Business Impressions on Desktop Search
– Will display Business Impressions on Mobile Search
An overall development such as this, with an impact on critical business parameters, may cause panic. We understand that. Hence, to put everyone’s mind at ease, we have explained what this change actually looks like. We believe that this development will unlock several new possibilities and enable businesses to strengthen their digital existence and find greater value, in the coming times.