Bing Places Portal for local businesses has stepped forward to bridge the gap between businesses and their customers by adding features that'll help businesses respond to the challenge of the COVID-19 pandemic - with updates for customers on the Bing search listing.
As the world continues to find solutions to the outbreak of COVID-19, Bing (Microsoft) has been on the frontline in terms of providing accurate and up-to-date information and working with relevant agencies as regards the novel Coronavirus pandemic.
Early in April, Bing stated on its news portal that users in multiple countries can now access reliable health information through public service announcements for certain COVID-19 queries.
This reliable information can be found near the top of search results pages and also in sidebar windows.
How the new features will benefit your business
As part of the measure to help combat the effect of Coronavirus, Bing announces an update to their features which will help you to pass important updates directly to your customers on your Bing listing.
These updates include changes to your business hours, limited service or links to more detailed information.
Here are some of the added tools to help you keep your customers informed.
This feature allows you to add temporary opening and closing hours while still maintaining your normal business hours.
Now, customers can see the changes you made to your business hours.
Many businesses have been forced to close down with no idea when they will reopen. To help your customers know about this closure, Bing now offers a new feature to flag off your business Listing as temporarily closed.
However, if you still serve customers but on limited services, you can use the special hours and announcements rather than choosing temporarily closed.
Use this feature to pass important updates to your customers. Updates such as changes to operating hours, delivery methods, closure and resumption date and link to online resources.
This feature is added to make way for losses or expenses incurred during the COVID-19 lockdown.
As a small business, you can create a new fundraiser with the help of GoFundMe via the Bing Places Portal that will automatically surface on your Bing listing.
Note that this is not yet available for chains or agencies at this time. And these new features can only be added through the desktop Bing Places portal.
Further reading: Beginners' guide to Bing SEO.