Google My Business Replacing Google Business Sitebuilder

Q. What is happening?

We are announcing that websites created on Google Business Sitebuilder will become inactive on March 15 2015. There are however some great alternatives available to website owners, including Google My Business and the opportunity to transfer existing website or open a new one with a Google partner.

Q. What is Google My Business?

For most businesses, Google My Business allows you to grow your following online and interact with your customers. It makes it easier for businesses to:

  1. Be found when customers are searching on Google via computer or mobile phone
  2. Show your customers where your business is located
  3. Build and manage relationships with your customers
  4. Update and maintain your online presence

Read all about its features and benefits, and sign up for Google My Business at www.google.com/intl/en/business

Q. What are the timelines for the change?

Google Business Sitebuilder websites for users who signed up through the any of the following programs, will stop being visible to visitors on 15 March 2015: Get Nigerian Business Online program, the Getting Kenyan Businesses Online program, the Getting African Businesses Online , the South Africa Woza Business Online , Appsfly, the Get Malaysian Business Online , and the Bisnis Lokal Go Online.

You will still be able to log in to your Google Business Sitebuilder admin account, to retrieve photos and text if you wish to move them to a different website tool, at least until May 1 2015.

Q. How can I move my website to Google My Business?
You can sign up for Google My Business and recreate the basic information on your website yourself at www.google.com/intl/en/business.

Or you can sign up to get help from our trusted partners, HostGator, who can set up Google My Business on your behalf, taking the information you provide from your current website. They will then transfer the ownership of your Google My Business over to you.

Q. How can I transfer my website?

Our trusted partner, Hostgator, is an international provider of cloud-based web presence solutions with over 15 years of experience helping small businesses succeed online. Their family of brands, through parent company Endurance International Group, serve over 3.7 million subscribers worldwide.

Moving your website to the Hostgator platform lets you continue with your website, and also allows you to access a range of powerful business features, including eCommerce, website security, backup and restore, and 24 hour support. Learn more at http://africa.hostgator.com (for all users in Africa), or at http://my.hostgator.com (Malaysia), or at http://id.hostgator.com (Indonesia)

You can sign up to get help from them to set up your website on their platform.

Q. Can I keep the domain name that I bought?

Yes. The custom domain name you have purchased is owned by you during the term agreed with your domain registrar, and can be pointed to any other website you may choose to create. For further assistance pointing your domain name to a new website, kindly approach your domain registrar directly.

Yes. When you sign up to get help from our partner, they can work with your domain registrar to transfer your domain name to point to the new website on their hosting platform.

Q. Can I keep the subdomain that I was using?
No. If your website URL was something like mybusinessname.kbo.co.ke, then this URL will become invalid at the same time as the content of your website.

Once you have signed up for Google My Business, you can create a Custom URL for your profile, so that you’ll have an address like google.com/+mybusinessname. Learn how to create a custom URL.

Q. What happens to my Google Apps account and emails?

Your existing Google account and Google emails are unaffected by this change.

Only your website at Google Business Sitebuilder is affected.

Q. What happens to pictures that I uploaded?
Images that you uploaded to Google Business Sitebuilder are hosted in your Google Account, and you will still have access to them all at https://plus.google.com/photos

Q. How do I know if should get a website, or just Google My Business?

Google My Business makes sure your business can be found on Google search, Maps and Google+, on desktop and on mobile. It allows you to provide photos and details of how to contact you.

If you want to provide deeper description of your services, photos of your products, product catalog, a direct contact form, or online ordering, then you will benefit from a website. If you want to use your domain, you will benefit from a website.

Read about the benefits of the websites from our our partner at http://africa.hostgator.com. (for all users in Africa), or at http://my.hostgator.com (Malaysia), or at http://id.hostgator.com (Indonesia).

Q. What if I have more questions?

You may also get help transferring your current site to a new host, and setting up Google My Business, with this online form.

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