The Google My Business API is almost over

The Google My Business API is almost over

As of April 30, 2022, the Google My Business API will change its name. It will be the Google Business Profile API. Businesses need to adapt to their size and the number of sites managed.

Google My Business API users still have two months to prepare: From April 30, the API will be permanently replaced by the Google Business Profile API and therefore, Google warns, “existing endpoints will be abandoned and will eventually disappear . ” Main change: Only multi-site companies will be able to continue working on the API. Google actually advertises “evolving to primarily support large companies with multiple sites”.

For small businesses, there will simply be no APIs. To use the Google service, they now need to connect by searching Google for the name of their business. Or type “my company” while connected, on the search engine and go to their profile. These companies will also be able to access their profile directly from the Google Maps application.

The challenge for companies to manage API changes properly is significant. According to a survey conducted by Custplace, Customer Opinion Manager, searches referring to a local point of sale increased by more than 900% between the beginning of 2020 and the middle of 2021. Nearly half of Google queries are also related to local information, according to the survey, conducted from January 1, 2020 to June 30, 2021 at more than 50,000 points of sale, of which 90% are part of a large network. .

But to be well positioned on local queries, the management of Google My Business listings is very important. These listings are one of the most important local SEO factors, whether it is in organic search or for the local package.

Exit schedule

In this context, how do you make this API change a success for companies? Barry Schwartz, editor of Search Engine Land, distinguishes between two cases. “Most companies, I would say 99%, do not use this API. This change will not affect. It will only affect those who use the old Google My Business API. Those who use it through third-party software or their own software must be aware of API changes and customize accordingly. “

For this, Google provides a Google My Business API “outcome plan”. The Mountain View Company page shows the migration dates from the obsolete resource to the API Replacement Resource.

Google explains, “The term” interrupted “means that the API version continues to work as intended, but may no longer be updated or corrected. In addition, support is limited. The term” disappears “indicates that the API version has been discontinued and not longer available. ” And to clarify: “We encourage you to migrate to the latest version as soon as possible after its launch.”

New resources

The new resources are REST resources. In fact, the Google Business Profile API is a REST API. This has the specifics of using intermediaries and helping developers manipulate data. REST works with url and http requests like Get, Post, Put … The server is queried by a URL suggested by the creator of the API.

Upon request, the computer receives data in JSON, in the case of the Google Business Profile API. This language is no longer used not only to prioritize, as is the case with the HTML structuring language, but also to make sense of the content.

Google’s REST resources allow, for convenience, to store objects by category and label them. For example, they allow you to specify the type of account the person has: either a personal account or a user account or a professional account.

For example, the replacement resource “Account Locations” offers “Service Item” as new. “Service item” is a message that describes a single service item. It is used to describe the type of service provided by the business. For example, mowing can be a service.

This news will a priori enable a finer approach. According to Mike Blumenthal, local search SEO specialist at Near Media, “it helps meet the more complex needs of multi-site businesses.” For him, the Mountain View company is “moving from a centralized and gigantic Google My Business API to a wealth of small APIs with very specific features.”

If Google seeks to optimize the exposure of companies with Google Business Profile, this API change still raises questions about the risk of a two-speed situation that this risks bringing between companies. Between these, multisite, managing an API and taking advantage of all its power. And on the other hand, small businesses with only one site, which will inevitably have a much more “manual” approach to the tool, perhaps less effective.

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