Guidance for Businesses affected by COVID-19

Updated: May 4, 2020

Check and edit your business information

If your business is affected by COVID-19, update your Google My Business profile to provide the most accurate information to your customers. You can provide updates about your business to customers such as:

  • Your adjusted hours of operation, for instance if you close early.
  • If your business services are experiencing delays.
  • Extra services you are providing for the community.
  • If your business is "Temporarily closed".

The updates will show on your Business Profile on Google Search and Maps.

Marking your business “Temporarily closed” won't affect local search ranking and it will be treated similar to open businesses. Businesses offering pickup or delivery services should not mark the business “Temporarily closed,” otherwise those services won't show on Google. 

Important: We may review your changes for quality before we publish them. The changes may not immediately be available on Google Search and Maps. Learn more about limited Google My Business functionality due to COVID-19.

Grow with Google has information for businesses to learn how to operate during times of uncertainty with resources such as online courses, live streams, and tips for other Google products. In this video tutorial, learn how to update your profile, communicate with posts, and add remote managers to your account. This video is available in EN only.

To make sure your customers have the latest information:

1. Update your business hours

If your business hours have changed, update the times when you’ll be open or closed. Your operating hours will show when the customer visits your profile, and they’ll know exactly when to visit your location. Learn how to change your hours.

Tip: If your business is not permanently closed, but has temporarily stopped providing all services, mark your business Temporarily closed. When your business fully or partially resumes operations, you can reopen your business. If your business is open but has adjusted operating hours during this time, set special hours rather than mark your business “Temporarily closed.” Learn how to set special hours.

2. Add a COVID-19 update post to your profile
Important: Posts that include a phone number may be rejected.

Use the new COVID-19 post type to share more detailed and timely updates about what’s going on at your business. You can add information about:

  • Closures or reduced hours
  • Safety and hygiene practices
  • Availability of gift cards to support your business 
  • Online classes and visits

COVID-19 update posts appear prominently on your profile and are more noticeable to your customers. Learn how to add your COVID-19 update post.

3. Connect with your customers

Download the Google My Business app and turn on messaging as a way to help your customers reach you. If you aren’t reachable by phone or it’s after your business hours, messaging can help customers get the support they need. Learn how to turn on messaging in the Google My Business app.

Tip: Draft an automatic welcome message to let customers know your business status.

4. Edit your business description

Important: Posts that include a phone number may be rejected.

Use your business description to share information about your business such as:

  • If your business is only available for takeout or delivery
  • Extra services you provide to the community
  • If your business services are delayed

Learn more about editing your business description.

5. Hours & services disclaimer

At this time, businesses may find a disclaimer on their profile to let customers know that their business info may not be up-to-date.

Verified businesses can remove this disclaimer when they update recent special hours. The disclaimer won't appear if a business hasn't set hours of operation or if you mark your business "Temporarily closed." If you mark your business “Temporarily closed,” attributes such as takeout or delivery won’t display on your profile.
6. Use attributes to highlight dining and shopping options

Dining and shopping businesses have attributes at the top of Business Profiles to inform customers about service availability. This new info will prominently appear on your Business Profile when customers search for your business on Google Maps and Google Search. Supported attributes will have a “✓” and non-supported attributes will have an “X."  Learn more about how you can edit attributes.

Learn more about specific recommendations for food businesses.
Learn more about specific recommendations for retail businesses.

Tip: If a business is marked “Temporarily closed,” these attributes for both dining and retail establishments won’t surface on Google Search and Maps. Businesses that offer takeout or delivery options shouldn’t mark the business “Temporarily closed.”
7. Recommendations for healthcare providers
Healthcare providers like doctors, therapists, and other medical practitioners can use Google My Business to claim and manage their practice’s info. You can add details about services, such as telemedicine, and personalize your Business Profile on Google Search and Maps.
A COVID-19 info link is also available for Healthcare providers to link out to their facility’s COVID-19 information page as a way to provide details on the facility’s operations and practices during the pandemic. This may include COVID-19 testing information, restricted visitor hours, a COVID-19 hotline, and/or whether visits and appointments are still occurring in person.
Important: The COVID-19 info link is available in the US and displays on mobile only.
8. Keep a pulse on the new normal with help from Google

Temporary closures

You can now mark your business “Temporarily closed” on Google. Google also relies on authoritative data sources, where available, to mark certain types of places as "Temporarily Closed" on Google Search and Google Maps.

Tip: If a business is marked “Temporarily closed,” attributes for both dining and retail establishments won’t surface on Google Search and Maps. If your business still operates through takeout or delivery, you should not mark it as "Temporarily closed."

Where does Google get this information from?

We rely on authorities to tell us when there are closures in their region. We use data from many types of authoritative data sources, which include national, state/provincial and local governments, non-profit organizations, educational institutions, and businesses.

What categories of places are covered here?

Any categories of places that authoritative sources say are temporarily closed. For example, schools are a common example of a type of place that may be listed as "Temporarily Closed." Other possible types of places an authoritative data source can mark as "Temporarily Closed" may include museums, gyms, and stores.

How can someone request an update and how quickly will the update be made?

A business owner with a Google My Business account can directly update their "Temporarily Closed" status to reopen and that change will be effective immediately.

What's your plan to remove temporary closure status?

We'll remove temporary closures placed by Google at the end date announced by authoritative sources. Otherwise, temporary closures can be directly removed through Google My Business if your business fully or partially resumes operations. Learn more about how you can reopen your business.

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