Notification

Business Profile chat will no longer be supported after July 31, 2024. Learn more about the changes on chat.

How to read & reply to messages from your Business Profile

Your customers can get in touch with you from your Business Profile. With the chat feature, you can:

  • Answer questions
  • Tell your story
  • Attract more customers

To ensure the best experience for your customers, follow the chat guidelines.

How it works

If you turn on chat, customers can use the "Chat" button on your Business Profile and message you at any time.

  • You get notifications for the messages that show up in your Business Profile. 
  • You can customize the automated welcome message that customers get when they message you.
  • You can share photos with your customers in the chat.
  • If multiple people own or manage your Business Profile, each one can chat with customers.
  • Customers can find your Business Name in the chat dialogue.

If you're interested in the chat API, please visit the Business Messages developer site.

Store your messages

If you turn on chat, you can save your messages to your Business Profile.

  • If you delete a message from one device, you removed it from all linked devices. You can no longer open them.
    • Important: You can delete the message from only your devices. The recipient can find the conversation on theirs.
  • To keep for your records or use in other Google products, you can export and download messages.

Manage chat on Google Search

Turn on or off chat in Search

Important: Past chat history is unavailable for businesses when they set up chat for the first time. Subsequent messages to and from the business are recorded after initial setup.

  1. Go to your Business Profile. Learn how to find your profile.
  2. Click Messages.
  3. Click Menu More and then Chat settings.
  4. Turn on or off Chat.
Find your messages in Search

Businesses that turn on chat can manage the chat feature from Search.

  1. Go to your Business Profile. Learn how to find your profile.
  2. Click Messages.
    • Businesses can manage individual inboxes for each business they own.
Turn message read receipts on or off

If a recipient opens a new message, the sender gets a “Read” status. If you turn off read receipts, your customers don't get the “Read” status.

If you turn on messaging, read receipts automatically turn on.

To turn read receipts off in Google Search:

  1. Go to your Business Profile. Learn how to find your profile.
  2. Click Messages.
  3. Click More More and then Chat settings.
  4. Turn off Send read receipts.
Delete your messages in Search
  1. Go to your Business Profile. Learn how to find your profile.
  2. Click Messages.
  3. Open the conversation you want to delete.
  4. Click Delete Trash.
Manage notifications in Search
  1. Go to your Business Profile. Learn how to find your profile.
  2. Click Menu More and then Notifications.
  3. Under Email Notifications, turn on or off Customer messages.
    Tip: For some users, SMS notifications may also be available. To receive SMS notifications, you must include your phone number.
Block a conversation in Search

Important: When the conversation is blocked, you no longer receive messages from the customer.

  1. Go to your Business Profile. Learn how to find your profile.
  2. Click Messages.
  3. Open the conversation you want to block.
    Tip: If you would like to report a message as spam, check the box.
  4. Click Block .
Report spam
  1. Go to your Business Profile. Learn how to find your profile.
  2. Click Messages.
  3. Open the conversation you want to report as spam.
  4. At the top right, click Block .
  5. Next to "Report spam," check the box.
  6. Click Block .
Share photos in Search

You can share photos of any size or format. There’s no limit to how many photos you can share at once.

  1. Go to your Business Profile. Learn how to find your profile.
  2. Click Messages.
  3. Open the conversation you want to share photos in.
  4. Click Photo .
  5. Choose a photo.
  6. Click Share Send.

Tip: You can delete photos through the thumbnails menu.

Welcome messages in Search

Once a client contacts your business, a Welcome message is automatically sent. This greeting sets the customer's expectations for your response.

To add a Welcome message:

  1. Go to your Business Profile. Learn how to find your profile.
  2. Click Messages.
  3. Click Menu More and then Chat settings.
  4. Next to "Welcome message," click Edit Edit.
  5. Edit your Welcome message.
  6. Click Save.
Set up Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Frequently Asked Questions is a feature that creates automated responses to common questions that users may ask about your business. There are 2 types of FAQs that you can use:

Custom FAQs

  • These are questions and answers that you create which can be specific to your business.

Automatic FAQs

  • These are Google generated questions and answers based on information on your Business Profile. Automatic FAQs can currently answer questions about these features:
    • Business hours
    • Appointments
    • Contact info
    • Delivery info
    • Location or address
    • Accepted forms of payment
    • Your website URL

Tip: You can choose to use Custom FAQs, Automatic FAQs, or both. You’ll get a notification for any automatic responses that are sent with the user’s profile photo and a copy of the automatic response.

To add Custom FAQs:

  1. Go to your Business Profile. Learn how to find your profile.
  2. Tap Messages.
  3. Tap Menu More and then Chat settings
  4. Tap Add FAQs and then Custom FAQs.
  5. Add the question and the automated response.
  6. Tap Save.

To turn on Automatic FAQs:

  1. Go to your Business Profile. Learn how to find your profile.
  2. Tap Messages.
  3. Tap Menu More and then Chat settings
  4. Tap Add FAQs and then Automatic FAQs.
  5. Turn on Automatic FAQs.

Tip: If Automatic FAQs provide incorrect answers to users, check that the info in your Business Profile is up to date and consistent.

Manage away mode

Important: This feature is currently available to some users. It will roll out to all users soon.

You can set up an automatic message response to let customers know you’re unavailable. If you only respond to messages during business hours, you can schedule an away message to be sent outside those hours.

Manage automatic away messages

  1. Go to your Business Profile. Learn how to find your profile.
  2. In the Business Profile you want to manage, click View profile and then Messages.
  3. At the top right, click More More and then Chat settings.
  4. In the box that opens, click Manage away mode and then Edit automatic away message.
  5. Enter your away message and click Save.

Snooze new message notifications while away

  1. Go to your Business Profile. Learn how to find your profile.
  2. In the Business Profile you want to manage, click View profile and then Messages.
  3. At the top right, click More More and then Chat settings.
  4. In the box that opens, click Manage away mode.
  5. Turn on Snooze notifications when away.

Schedule away mode

  1. Go to your Business Profile. Learn how to find your profile.
  2. In the Business Profile you want to manage, click View profile and then Messages.
  3. At the top right, click More More and then Chat settings.
  4. In the box that opens, click Manage away mode and then Schedule.
  5. Set times for your business to send away messages.

Respond promptly

The following requirement is for any business that uses messages on their Business Profile.

You must reply to your messages within 24 hours. It can promote trust and encourage engagement. If you don’t respond within the time frame, we deactivate chat for your business.

Find average response time

Businesses can find and track their average response time in the app. You can get insights if you have messages turned on in your Google Maps app.

These insights show average response times using the last 28 days of data. You can choose a longer time period and compare wait times for similar businesses nearby.

If customers search for your business, they can get a status update for a message response time:

  • "Usually responds in a few minutes"
  • "Usually responds in a few hours"
  • "Usually responds in a day"
  • "Usually responds in a few days"

Learn more about changes to your Insights data.

FAQ

What happens when chat is enabled?
If you turn on chat, customers can message you through the "Chat" button on your Business Profile. Get quote or request a booking buttons may also appear on profiles in selected categories.
When chat is enabled:
  • You get notifications for incoming messages. 
  • You can customize the automated welcome message.
  • If multiple people own or manage your Business Profile, each one can message customers. 
  • Customers can find your Business Name in the chat dialogue.
How do I keep the chat button active on Google?
You should respond to messages within 24 hours. If you don’t, we may remove the "Chat" button from your Business Profile. If you get spam or poor quality messages, you can mark them as spam. Learn more about messaging guidelines.
How is response time calculated?
Your response time is the average amount of time it takes your business to reply to new messages from the last 28 days.
  • If you've received fewer than 10 messages in the 28-day period, the response time uses your last 10 messages.
  • If you've received fewer than 10 messages since enabling chat, the response time uses all messages received.
How is response rate calculated?
Your response rate is the percentage of new messages you responded to in the last 28 days.
Your response counts:
  • If you reply to the first message you get after at least 7 days of no communication with a given customer.
  • If you send your response within 24 hours. 
  • If you've received fewer than 10 messages in the 28-day period, the response rate uses your last 10 messages.
  • If you've received fewer than 10 messages since signing up for chat, the response rate uses all the messages received.
How do I reactivate my chat?
If you lose access to your chat button, you can turn on chat. To keep the chat button active, you must respond to all new messages in less than 24 hours.
Are there any messages not used to calculate response time and rate?
Welcome messages and messages marked as spam aren't used to calculate response time and rate.
Are there any limitations when setting up the FAQs messages?
  • You can set up 10 messages.
  • Questions can be maximum 60 characters.
  • Answers can be maximum 500 characters and can include links.
true
Get help from Small Business Advisors

Want to receive one-on-one guidance and tailored recommendations on how to make the most out of your Business Profile? Try booking an appointment with Small Business Advisors.


Important: This service cannot troubleshoot issues, including Business Profile verification or suspension, or Google Ads billing.

Search
Clear search
Close search
Google apps
Main menu