Service radius is out, listing individual locations is in.
Google has finally pulled the plug on the service based business radius in GMB (Google my Business). This began earlier in the year, but the company has finished the job this month, removing the old feature from the final accounts.
What has changed
If you set your service area as a radius before, your new default will be the nearest town to your business. Just one town, not all the towns that filled up that radius.
Showing up in one town besides your home town isn’t a very large service area unless you’re in a large city. So now’s the time to head over to your Google my Business dashboard and check that your service area in GMB reflects what your service area really is. Google gives you some latitude here. You can list cities and towns individually or list counties and states. It’s up to you.
Google has been phasing out the radius service area since early 2019. Google seldom publishes reasons why they do what they do but the feeling among the SEO community is that they wanted to take a more granular, or target specific approach to service locations.
If you haven’t been in your GMB dashboard for a while, now is the time to check and rebuild your service area.
Do I need to do anything?
Not necessarily, if you haven’t made the switch from radius to individual town selection, Google will now do it for you, selecting your nearest town as your service area.
If you want to appear in multiple towns, you need to review your listing under the “Info” tab and make sure that the appropriate towns/cities are selected.
If you have a Google my Business listing, you should get a notification of the change in your GMB dashboard, as well as an email telling you about it.
The final changes were announced on September 3rd 2019.
If all this is foreign to you and you’d like some assistance, feel free to contact us.