Google My Business is introducing a new call history module to help businesses see and respond to missed calls from Google Search and Maps.
COVID-19 lockdowns have emphasized the importance of communication between businesses and customers. As a result, phone calls are currently experiencing some revival.
Call volumes are rising due to consumers seeking to confirm opening hours and product inventory. Unfortunately, small businesses have struggled with this communication method.
According to a report, small business owners don’t answer 62 percent of phone calls. Meanwhile, 64 percent of consumers say that they connected with a specific business after a phone call.
Now, Google is adding a call history module to Google My Business to address the issue. As modest as the feature may seem, it could help improve customer service and secure incremental sales.
The statement in Google My Business Help page reads:
“You can use call history to keep track of phone calls from your customers on Google Search and Maps. Your calls are all in one place to help you respond to missed calls and stay engaged with your customers.”
Here’s how the new feature works.
Using the new Call History Module in Google My Business
The GMB app now features a “Calls” tab that allows businesses to track their recent calls and missed calls.
Business owners will see a “comprehensive list of the time, date, and phone numbers that called.” Like the call log on smartphones, missed calls will remain in the GMB app for 45 days.
Yet, you may want to think twice before activating the Call history feature. Here’s why.
Customers using the Call icon can only reach you through a forwarding number that Google created, and not the number in your profile. In other words, the new feature disguises your business’s actual phone number.
According to the GMB Help center:
“Once call history is on, customers will connect to you through a forwarding number instead of through the number on your profile. At the start of a call, you’ll get an automated message that says, “Call from Google.”
Admittedly, this may not be an issue for many companies. However, there are a few that would want to be contacted through their actual phone numbers.
Whatever the case may be, users can turn the call history module on and off at any time using their GMB admin dashboard. Google also noted that the feature only tracks phone calls, not text.
Call history in Google My Business is still under beta testing. At the moment, it’s only available to a select group of businesses in the United States.