Bing Places for business has added some new features that help local businesses update their Bing Places listings if they were impacted by COVID-19. Bing Places has added Bing Announcements, GoFundMe Campaigns, Special Hours, and Temporarily Closed features.
Bing Announcements is a new feature that allows you, the business owner, to pass on important updates directly to customers by showing the announcement on your Bing listing. You can include updates such as info on limited services, changes to business hours of operation, or even links to detailed information, which you should link to your website. You can only add the announcements via the Bing Places portal on desktop. Bing Announcements aren’t available on the mobile app.
It’s fairly easy to add an announcement, clicking in the Bing Places portal to add the announcement shows the form above. You can add a start date and an end date.
GoFundMe Campaigns via Bing
You can now set up a GoFundMe campaign directly in Bing Places. The idea here is for businesses impacted by COVID-19 can create a new fundraiser that will be automatically shown on the Bing Places listing. This is not available for agencies or chains. Like the Bing Announcements feature, it can only be added through the desktop Bing Places portal and not through the mobile app.
When you click the GoFundMe link in the Bing Place portal, the following notice appears:
“Would you like to create a fundraiser for just the following business listing or for all listings under your account?
Either way, you will be redirected to GoFundMe.com to create your fundraiser. GoFundMe will handle the entire fundraiser from setup to finish, including any support or questions related to the fundraiser throughout its duration.*
Once your GoFundMe fundraiser is live, Bing will automatically link your fundraiser to your published local listing. No further action is required within your account.
*The creation and operation of GoFundMe fundraisers is solely managed by and the responsibility of GoFundMe. Other terms and conditions may apply. Microsoft reserves the right to cancel, change or suspend this offer at any time without notice.”
If you agree to the terms, then you will set up the GoFundMe fundraiser on the GoFundMe website. Then, as they stated, Bing will automatically link your fundraiser to your published local listing on the Bing search engine results.
The Bing Places Special Hours feature lets you add temporary hours while keeping the business normal hours active. On the Bing Places listing, it will still show the normal hours, but they are crossed out with strikeout text and “Special Hours” are listed if entered by the business.
On the left side of the Bing Places portal, you can add Special Hours.
If a business is temporarily closed due to COVID-19 restrictions, then the business has an option to mark the listing as temporarily closed. This is different than the Special Hours, as “temporarily closed” means that the business will NOT be serving any customers in any way. If a business has a limited amount of services available, then the business listing should use the “special hours” feature, and then add the information in the Bing Announcements.
On the left side of the Bing Places portal, you can select the new Temporarily Closed option. You can select from Mark as Temporarily Closed, Mark as closed, or Delete. I don’t recommend marking the business as closed unless you actually have closed the business permanently. It will be still shown–but the listing will show that it’s permanently closed. In the case of Deleting a listing, this is how you would remove the listing. I recently had to do this to a Bing Places listing, as there were 4 different listings for the same business in my Bing Places portal dashboard. They all had the same phone number and address, so I removed all but one of the listings.