Businesses should optimize all avenues with the goal of reaching potential customers. That includes getting set up on Reserve with Google, if possible. We recently covered the importance of this new service and how customers will be using it to book appointments. Now, we’ve learned more about the types of businesses that are eligible to use the service. Mike Blumenthal describes these business categories in greater detail.
Reserve with Google Requirements
Mike writes, “at the highest level, it requires a merchant to have a physical address and a booking service compatible with Google’s API. Thus no service area businesses allowed.” Google confirms this. They write, “For a merchant to be eligible for Reserve with Google, they need to meet two main criteria: The business should have a physical location with an address that can be matched to the Google Maps database. Its services must be bookable according to the service definition.”
This means that service companies without a physical address are not eligible to be on Reserve with Google. Even if a business services a small, local area, they are not eligible unless they claim a physical address.
Approved Business Categories
Google has provided the categories that are allowed to integrate with Reserve with Google. Here are a few types:
- Basic ticketing
- General admission day tours
- Consults and evaluations
- Signups and trials
It’s worth noting that the Reservations category includes restaurants. For example, if I wanted to eat at Sam’s Steakhouse at 7:30 pm this Saturday, I would be able to book my reservation through Reserve with Google.
The same idea works with all other categories on the list, including classes. Let’s say I want to attend a Muay Thai kickboxing class. If the Muay Thai business has integrated with Reserve with Google, I’ll be able to book online without even having to talk with anyone to schedule it.
Speaking of health and fitness, there are a number of available types in this category. Here’s the list that Google provides:
- Craniosacral therapy
- Sports medicine
- Sleep clinic
- Drug testing
- Retreat center
- Speech pathologist
Spa and beauty services are closely related to the health and fitness category. Here’s a list Google provides or approved businesses in the spa and beauty services category:
- Lymph drainage
- Skin care
- Hair removal
- Hair replacement
Reserve with Google is a newer service; therefore, additional categories may be added as time goes on. If you don’t see your business category on the list or aren’t sure if you qualify, contact us and we’ll advise on the next steps you can take.
Ineligible Business Categories
Some business categories, such as mobile pet grooming services or plumbers, will not be able to integrate with Reserve with Google. Google shared a list of some categories that are currently ineligible:
- Doctors, dentists, or surgery
- Medical spas that aren’t covered by insurance
On-demand or home services:
- A stylist that comes to your workplace
- In-home trainers
- A pet grooming truck
- Field services, plumbers, or contractors
- Mobile mechanics
- Location-agnostic multi-day tours
Why aren’t these categories allowed? Mike has some ideas. He writes, “If I were to speculate on the whys of this, the prohibition of on-demand service involves liability risks with the possibility of in-home visits from unvetted businesses. I think Google’s approach to these types of businesses can be seen with the extra vetting required in the Local Service Ad program. I assume, but do not know, that liability issues may still be present in the desire to avoid doctors, dentist and spa bookings as well.”
Mike continues writing about how Google also may want to avoid appointments that are more difficult to confirm. For example, home services experts like handymen often give a four-hour window of when they’re likely to arrive at a residence.
Reserve with Google Example
Hair salon services are eligible to participate in Reserve with Google. For our example, we’re going to take a look at Duke’s Hair Studio which is located in Dallas.
Check out the photo below. On the right side, we see the location of the business in Google Maps. On the left side, the business name, address, and star review score are shown. Under that, you have the option to “BOOK”.
After clicking BOOK, it’s time to schedule your appointment. You’ll be taken to the next screen which you can see below. First, you’ll get to pick the actual service you want. At a hair salon, there will be multiple services to choose from. Then, you can click the date and time.
Finally, notice that Duke’s Hair Salon is partnered with Genbook. Genbook is one of the many scheduling application with have a partnership with Reserve with Google. You can learn more about these partners in the following article: Google Has Added “Reserve With Google” to the 3-Pack Map in the SERPs.
Featured photo by CC0 Creative Commons on Pixabay
Reserve with Google photos are screenshots by Gain Local