Tag Archives: small business

Japan prepares for a changing economy

This summer, Japan was meant to be hosting visitors from around the world at the Olympic Games. Instead, Japan’s people and businesses are confronting the significant and lasting impact of COVID-19. While the postponement of the Games was disappointing, the immediate task is to make the necessary changes to deal with the pandemic and get the Japanese economy growing again in a sustainable way.  


Despite these challenges, there’s an opportunity for Japan not only to rebuild, but to shape a stronger future. We’re committed to helping in every way we can, building on our programs to expand digital skills and advance technology for good. 


Japan’s digital skills divide


One of the most urgent priorities is to close the divide between Japanese businesses that use the internet effectively and those that don’t. According to Ipsos research commissioned by Google, business owners who have adopted digital tools adjusted better to the impact of Japan’s lockdowns and social-distancing restrictions. 


Among businesses that own websites and e-commerce sites, 56 percent said in the survey that digital tools helped them handle the crisis. Kudo Sakai Dojo, a martial arts school in Osaka, began offering lessons online, while flower retailer Hana-Cupid has analyzed Google trends and used YouTube ads to attract new customers. 


Yet the research also found that just 41 percent of small businesses in Japan currently have an online presence—and fewer than five percent of small businesses launched a new website or e-commerce site during the lockdown.


Infographic on Japan SMB research

Many business owners or entrepreneurs want to take advantage of the internet, but they often don’t know where to start. Changing that has to be at the heart of Japan’s coronavirus response, and we want to play our part.  


Our commitment to closing the gap


Since 2016, we’ve provided digital skills training to 5.5 million people in Japan, running courses in 45 prefectures and working with more than 100 local partners. We’re now expanding these efforts. 


For the past month, we’ve been running seminars to help small businesses understand and adopt e-commerce, partnering with companies like Salesforce and Shopify, the Small and Medium Enterprise Agency (part of the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry) and Impulse (part of the Central Federation of Societies of Commerce and Industry). We’re adding new permanent courses to our Grow with Google training program, focused on helping businesses get online and promote themselves using platforms like Google My Business


As well as supporting businesses taking their first steps online, we’ve moved events like our Android 11 beta launch seminars to a digital format—so Japanese developers can now get information and support no matter where they live. We also continue to help Japanese founders through Google for Startups. Our most recent accelerator program got underway just as COVID-19 began to hit, forcing classes to move online, but the founders taking part have shown great resilience and flexibility. For example, Omsister, a childcare startup which provides bilingual nanny service, has launched a service offering online English lessons.


Looking to the longer term


Beyond its immediate impact, COVID-19 is raising longer-term questions in Japan—including what the future of work could look like.   


Japanese companies have traditionally required their workers to be in the office full-time, but during the coronavirus lockdown, many Japanese employees had to work from home—including almost half of all workers in the Kanto and Kansai areas (home to Tokyo and Osaka). After we made Google Meet available for free in April, we saw a big increase in Japanese companies and workers using it for video conferencing. 


This shift to remote work has become part of a bigger discussion about the need for more flexible and inclusive ways of working in Japan. We want to continue providing tools to help and sharing insights to inform the discussion, like our recent study on the impact of remote working


At the same time, we plan to deepen our partnerships in Japan in other areas of technology that we know will become more important as the country rebuilds. As major Japanese companies and government departments look to modernize how they operate, we’re working hard to help them adopt cloud computing. And as Japan continues to explore fields like artificial intelligence to solve social, environmental and economic problems, we’re helping through our program AI for Japan. It’s our commitment to train AI talent and advance and apply AI research for good.


In 2001, just three years after Google was founded, we opened our first overseas office in Tokyo, humbled to become part of a long tradition of Japanese forward-thinking. Today, despite the cancellation of the Olympics and the impact of COVID-19, we’re even more optimistic about the potential of technology for Japan’s future. We look forward to helping build that future with our partners and communities.

Do something new with whats.new

Last year, Google Registry released .new—a domain extension that lets businesses build novel shortcuts into their products. Since then, more than 200 .new domains have come to life, providing shortcuts to common tasks within popular services like Medium, Asana, GitHub and more. With all the .new domains available, you can easily replace menus and long URLs with short and memorable links—clicking less, and getting things done faster.

To help you get the most out of the .new domains that have launched over the last few months, we’ve put together a collection of notable ones at whats.new. You can also browse all the .new shortcuts currently available by category.


Here are just a few of our favorite shortcuts:


  • The next time you need to convert a file into a PDF, try using pdf.new from Adobe Acrobat. All you need to do is drag and drop your document into their online PDF converter and watch it transform into a high-quality PDF that’s easy to share and looks great on any screen.

  • Create stand out social media posts in just a few clicks with create.new from Adobe Spark. Start from thousands of templates, choose from millions of images, icons, and stickers to add to your design, and brandify with your own logos, colors, and fonts.

  • Ready to make your own podcast? It's easy and free with Anchor, Spotify’s all-in-one podcasting platform. Go to podcast.new to record a new episode.

  • Want to start a new blog? Head to blog.new to create your WordPress.com account and join millions of bloggers. (Already have a WordPress.com website? Try post.new to draft your next blog post.)

  • Whether you’re working from home or organizing a virtual happy hour with friends, go to meet.new to launch a real-time meeting from your browser using Google Meet.  

With more than 200 (and growing) .new domains spanning uses across productivity, business services and creativity, we think you’ll find at least a few .new shortcuts you’ll want to use regularly!

New ways to support Black-owned businesses

While working as an Entrepreneur-in-residence at Google from 2014 to 2016, I traveled across the country to help enhance the online presence of hundreds of Black-owned businesses. As a Black woman, entrepreneur and Googler, supporting Black-owned businesses and Black founders is my passion.


Over the past few months, we’ve seen a surge in online searches for Black-owned businesses. It’s been inspiring to witness so many people look for ways to invest in the Black community. Now, we’re announcing three new ways to help support Black business owners. 


Starting today, merchants in the U.S. with a verified Business Profile on Google can add a Black-owned business attribute to their profile, making it easier for customers to find and support them. As part of our $300 million commitment to support underrepresented entrepreneurs, we’re also integrating the attribute into the digital skills training programs we offer Black business owners through Grow with Google Digital Coaches. And through Google for Startups Accelerator for Black Founders, we’re starting our work with the first cohort of 12 startups. 

Making Search and Maps more inclusive

With this attribute, our goal is to make Search and Maps more inclusive and help support Black-owned businesses when they need it most. 

“Everyone who comes into this store is welcome,” says Janet Jones, founder and co-owner of the Detroit-based Source Booksellers. “For us, being Black-owned means serving the community we’re in.” 

By adding the attribute, people using Google Search and Maps can see Source Booksellers is Black-owned, and easily extend their support by purchasing one of their products, leaving a great review and sharing their Business Profile with others looking for their next book. 

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Identity attributes are featured on merchants' Business Profiles when they opt in

To help get the word out about the new Black-owned attribute, we’ve partnered with the U.S. Black Chambers, Inc. (USBC). With 145 Black Chambers of Commerce and 326,000 members across the country, USBC provides leadership and advocacy to empower Black business owners through resources and initiatives. Together, Google and USBC will provide training for Black-owned businesses to enhance their presence on Google through the use of digital tools like Google My Business and Google Analytics. Our hope is that by partnering with USBC, we can help more businesses connect with their community and customers.

Reaching more businesses with digital skills training

We’re also adding the Black-owned business attribute to the training curriculum offered through the Grow with Google Digital Coaches program. Since 2017, Digital Coaches have offered free mentorship, networking, and workshop opportunities to Black and Latinx businesses in 11 cities across the U.S., including Atlanta, Chicago and Detroit. And the program is growing: Last month, we announced an expansion to Birmingham, Alabama, Memphis, Tennessee and Cleveland, Ohio, as well as a commitment to train more than 50,000 Black owned small businesses. 

Introducing the first class of Google for Startups Accelerator for Black Founders

Through Google for Startups, we’re also expanding ways to support Black entrepreneurs who are using technology to address so many of today’s biggest challenges. Today, we’re announcing the inaugural class of the Google for Startups Accelerator for Black Founders with 12 high potential Seed to Series A tech startups based in the U.S. 

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Inaugural class of the Google for Startups Accelerator for Black Founders

The class includes entrepreneurs like Guy Asaad, founder of Clerkie, a business designed to help Americans get out of debt. It also includes Melvin Hine, founder of Upswing, which is dedicated to improving the online education system, and Ashley Edwards, founder of MindRight Health which provides digital mental health services for young people. Starting next month, these 12 founders will receive training and support from Google and industry experts on technical challenges, business growth, and outside investment opportunities to help them reach the next level.

In my current role as the Head of Google for Startups in the U.S., I have the privilege of continuing to work with Black entrepreneurs. Today’s updates are a part of our company-wide effort to support Black-owned businesses through products and meaningful partnerships. It’s my hope that this attribute and Google’s tools and training can serve as additional resources for Black-owned businesses and the people who support them. 

Libraries help entrepreneurs write their next chapter

In our over 20 years working with small businesses, we’ve met countless entrepreneurs who have turned problems into opportunities. The COVID-19 pandemic has created unprecedented challenges for small businesses, and we’re committed to finding new ways to support these problem-solvers who are the cornerstones of their communities. That’s why this year alone Google has committed over $300 million to support underrepresented entrepreneurs in the U.S. 

Thanks to a $2 million grant from Google.org, one of the ways we are supporting small businesses and entrepreneurs is through the work of local libraries. Today, as part of our longstanding support of the American Library Association (ALA), we’re announcing that 13 public libraries have been selected to form entrepreneurship centers across the country, focusing on low-income or underrepresented entrepreneurs. 

These libraries will provide virtual and in-person services including workshops such as Business 101, English as a Second Language (ESL), Web Design, Marketing and Accounting. They will also provide one-on-one coaching to small business owners, secure access to specialized equipment and technology, plus help with promotion and marketing assistance, research, and tasks like navigating legal and business licenses and requirements.

The Richland Library in Columbia, South Carolina, is a great example of a library that is making a difference with their Google.org funding. They’ve built a resource center for underrepresented entrepreneurs by offering peer support, training and resources for people at every stage of business development. They’ve recently opened an online hub which helps entrepreneurs and businesses access the resources they need to stay up and running during the pandemic. Richland’s innovative program, and those of the other grantees, will be used to create a playbook that any library anywhere will be able to use to build out their own small business recovery services.

This effort builds on a long-running partnership with the ALA. In January 2019, we worked with the ALAto bring Grow with Google’s free digital skills workshops to libraries, and this investment helped people develop critical skills they need to find jobs and grow their businesses. During these workshops, we connected with small business owners who were facing a range of challenges. We also worked closely with librarians to train their staff on digital skills and equip them with new tools and resources to drive digital learning in their communities. Using free resources from our Grow with Google Partner Program, one librarian in Kentucky trained her staff as well as other librarians across the state. She’s not alone: Through our Partner Program more than 1,100 local libraries use our free content, handouts and resources to train people in their communities.

From small towns to big cities, almost every community across the country has a place you can go to get free information, internet access and digital skills training: the local library. Thanks to ongoing collaboration with the ALA and community partners across the country, we’re continuing to help local libraries provide critical skills training at a time when people need it most. If you are a small business owner interested in learning more about how to grow your business with help from Google and your local library, watch our virtual workshop, Build Your Online Presence with Google and Your Local Library, co-hosted with the ALA. Or check out our other free virtual workshops, events and one-on-one coaching sessions to get the most out of digital tools.

New training programs for European and Israeli startups

Starting a successful company is a difficult job for anyone. But because the startup playing field isn’t level, some entrepreneurs have a tougher time than others. Many women and BIPOC founders have comparatively limited access to capital, mentorship, talent and networking opportunities. More than 7 in 8 people working for European startups identify as Caucasian or White, but only 20 percent of founders are women; and 92 percent of funding in 2019 went to all-male teams. Particularly in times of economic downturn like the current crisis, startups facing these challenges could use even more support.

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Founders from the Google for Startups Germany community

Google for Startups aims to empower startups and equip founders with the resources they need to solve today's biggest challenges. Today, we’re announcing three new programs that will help European and Israeli startups access Google’s products and experts to grow their businesses, including two programs for founders from underrepresented groups.


Immersion: Black Founders

This program will pair ten Black founders from Europe and Israel with international Google experts to identify and solve their most pressing technical and business challenges, such as implementing machine learning and improving user experience design. The program will provide connections to venture capital funding and investor networks, and offer workshops focused on fundraising, hiring and sales. Apply here.


Immersion: Women Founders

Applications are open for this mentoring and acceleration program that will offer the 12 participating female founders access to a dedicated Google Advisor, in addition to ongoing weekly workshops and skill-building sessions over the course of 12 weeks. In the words of Charlotte Guzzo, founder of Sano Genetics and a Google for Startups UK Residency alumna, “It's a rare opportunity to work with a world-class team of like-minded entrepreneurs and experts from Google and it can really get you places you would not reach on your own.”

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Google for Startups Accelerator: Cybersecurity in Malaga, Spain, 2019

Google for Startups Accelerator

We’re looking for 10-12 startups from Europe and Israel that are using technology to solve the challenges we face today, whether in healthcare, education, news reporting, remote working, finance, wellness, food delivery, or B2B/B2C services. The participants will have access to three months of intensive remote support from Google, including workshops and mentoring sessions with Google engineers and external experts, giving them access to Google products and technical expertise. You can find more info and applications here.

With these programs, we’re committed to helping underrepresented founders access a wide range of resources and opportunities, especially during this global crisis. You can learn more and apply on our site.

Free tools and training to help with economic recovery in Europe, the Middle East and Africa

Through lockdown, many of us found that online tools have been a real lifeline. We’ve used them to find information and stay connected with our communities, support local businesses, teach our children and learn new skills ourselves. The same tools will be vital in helping countries recover more quickly and more sustainably. 

That’s why Google is making a new pledge to help 10 million people and businesses in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) find jobs, digitize and grow over the next 18 months.

Helping people learn new skills and find new jobs

Long before the coronavirus, it was clear the jobs of the future would require a new set of digital skills, so we launched Grow with Google to help people learn new skills. We were blown away by the demand, and by what people went on to achieve, and in five years we’ve trained over 14 million people in EMEA and 70 million around the world.

We’ve seen a tripling of demand for this training during lockdown. To help even more families, communities and businesses recover faster, we’re investing in new, targeted programs. For example, we will be covering the costs for 100,000 people to take the Google IT Support Professional Certificatewhich prepares people for a career in IT. Fifty thousand of these places are reserved for under-served groups who otherwise face real barriers to learning (such as language, caring responsibilities or financial difficulty). Google.org will fund local nonprofits to provide the tailored support these people require to successfully complete the course.

To help people find new job opportunities, we’ll launch our job search tool in more countries in EMEA. We are testing new features for the recovery—such as helping you find jobs that let you work from home. Job search is built in partnership with job boards, local employment agencies and others, like Pôle Emploi in France, Bayt.com in the Middle East and Monster.de in Germany, and it also helps them by finding job seekers with the right skills faster.

We’ve learned over the last five years that we need to do more to reach those whose existing jobs are most at risk of disruption by new technology. Two years ago, we allocated 100m in Google.org grants, to be disbursed over five years to organisations across Europe, the Middle East and Africa that focus on digital skills and economic opportunity. Today, we're announcing that $15m of that funding will go to non-profits that help workers and small business owners who are technologically, financially or socially excluded with critical digital skills and access to jobs.

Grow with Google

Helping local businesses get online and find more customers

As we come out of lockdown, and consumer spending picks up, we’re upgrading our tools  to help more local businesses find and connect with customers quickly. Through Google my Business, it’s easier for businesses to share their latest opening hours and information across Google Search and Maps. They can also shift quickly to new services and business models, such as pick-up, delivery and online classes and appointments. 


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We are also investing in new programs to help industries hardest hit by the pandemic, including retail and travel. 

For retail businesses, online demand has grown exponentially, so they need to provide a great customer experience to be competitive. The improved version of Grow My Store helps local businesses improve digital shopping, grow customer traffic and optimize online stores. Reaching new audiences by exporting abroad should be an easy option for every business regardless of size. 

Our Market Finder tool now provides export marketing and logistics help in light of COVID-19. To help retailers understand changes in demand, we’re releasing a new interactive tool that shares insights on fast-rising retail categories in Google Search, where in the world searches are growing, and the queries associated with them.

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For the travel industry, we’re partnering with experts like the UN World Tourism Organisation to launch training to help tourism officials across Europe, the Middle East and Africa understand and use the range of digital tools to attract travellers. This builds on our efforts to support tourism businesses across the region to help them grow with digital tools, get access to training and digitize heritage

Helping businesses work more efficiently and think differently

The crisis has accelerated trends that we’d expected to see over a longer period of time, like the use of AI and automation to help grow sales, reduce costs, and make better decisions. Research suggests that the European companies using AI most extensively are likely to grow three times faster than the average firm over the next 15 years, adding €2.7 trillion, or 19 percent, to European output by 2030.

To make this accessible for every business, we’re launching our AI for business tool to small and medium businesses in Europe. The tool, in English, with more languages to follow this year, provides businesses with a personalised report recommending the most relevant applications of AI and the potential benefits, along with practical suggestions on how to get started. This is part of our commitment to build trust in AI through responsible innovation and thoughtful regulation, so that European citizens can safely enjoy the full social and economic benefits of AI. 

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Financial support for local businesses

A digital transition cannot rely on technology alone: businesses need financial resources as well. That’s why we announced grants and ad credits for local businesses a few weeks ago. And we’ve recently launched the ability for businesses in 19 European countries to add support links on Google My Business to give their communities the option to support them with donations and gift cards. We have also added several new partners to enable gift cards, including SumUp, LaFourchette, OptioPay, Rise.ai, and Atento. 

We remain fundamentally optimistic about the future, and about the role technology can play, and we’re working with governments to help people, businesses and communities. Online tools, which have been a lifeline for many of us in lockdown, are now helping people find jobs and learn in-demand skills. If we work together, technology can be a lifeline for everyone as Europe, the Middle East and Africa look ahead to a sustainable recovery for everyone.

To find out more about these tools and programs, visit g.co/grow.

Stories of small business: resilience amid COVID-19

As a former small business owner, I admire the many ways that an idea-turned-business can start: as a side hustle, a plan dreamed up at the kitchen table, or something passed down from generation to generation. But what I admire more is the ingenuity and resilience of small business owners who make it through all manner of crises, especially COVID-19.


Seventy percent of small businesses say digital tools have been useful to them during the COVID crisis. Here are the stories of a few businesses from across the world who have made quick adjustments to keep their businesses running and how their digital presence helped them along the way:


Corinna and Theresa Williams are sisters who had an ambitious goal: to create a laundromat that made you actually want to do your laundry. Together, they opened Celsious in Brooklyn, New York. Celsious is a light-filled laundromat with soaring ceilings, fast, eco-friendly machines, a barista-attended coffee bar, and places to hang out while you wait for your clothes. They received enthusiastic support from the community, and by all accounts, had more than met their original goal. But when COVID-19 hit and New York’s stay at home order was issued, they quickly switched to a drop-off only business model. Their Business Profile on Google helped customers book appointments online, including priority times the sisters set aside for essential workers. 


Progetto Quid in Verona, Italy is a sustainable fashion brand that recovers high-quality textiles from larger clothing and textile/fabric manufacturers that would otherwise be wasted and regenerates them into beautiful collections manufactured by people (mostly women) with vulnerable pasts. When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, founder and president Anna Fiscale used the textiles to create reusable face masks that she sold online–helping to keep people safe, as well as preserving the jobs of all of her employees. 


Fatima Alvarez and her co-founders had a vision: empower indigenous female artisans in Mexico by introducing Mexico’s traditional craftsmanship to the world. They founded Someone Somewhere, a clothing company working with more than 200 artisans in five states in Mexico: Puebla, Oaxaca, Chiapas, Hidalgo and Estado de México. When they were forced to close their retail stores as a result of the pandemic, they shifted their focus to online sales and reached customers in both Mexico and the United States. This allowed them to continue operating and keep their staff employed. They’ve also begun donating 10 percent of their profits to the communities they work with to help with medical supplies and protective equipment.


BoxFit from New Delhi, India is a boxing and kickboxing-based fitness club with two locations and 20 employees. When the pandemic forced them to close their doors, founder Rahul Kaul had to quickly figure out how to make sure his instructors could keep paying their bills. He started streaming live interactive workouts on YouTube, allowing BoxFit to keep their instructors, stay connected to their members, and reach new followers.  


To celebrate International Small Business Day, we encourage you to check out more videos of resilient small businesses across the world who are using digital tools to build a stronger online presence, reach more customers, and continue making an impact on their communities. To learn more about resources for small business owners, and ways that individuals can help, check out Google for Small Business


6 ways you can support local businesses with Google Maps

Editor’s Note: Small businesses are crucial to our communities. As we head into International Small Business Day on June 27, we’ve compiled six Google Maps tips anyone can use to help small businesses during the pandemic. 

As cities and economies start to reopen, people are looking for ways to support their favorite small businesses. We recently announced new features to help business owners get support, adjust operations and reach customers in new ways, and have heard from people around the world that they want to support their favorite small businesses. 

Here are six easy ways you can show support for small businesses in your community right now:


1. Report a place as re-opened and edit other helpful information 

Business owners may not have the time or resources to keep the information on their online listing updated. If you know a business has reopened to the public, but it’s still marked as closed on Google Search or Maps, you can report it as re-opened. Click on the “Temporarily Closed” banner on the business and select “Suggest an edit” to let us know that the business has reopened. And for businesses that have reopened with different hours, you can also submit updated open hours information.

Update the Temporarily Closed label on Google Maps

2. Spread the word with reviews, ratings and photos

Share your experience. Writing about a restaurant’s well-executed takeout window or adding photos of the menu or dish you ordered in your Maps review can help businesses you love attract more customers.


Leave a review on Google Maps

3. Try an online class

Missing your go-to yoga studio or in desperate need of a consultation with your hair stylist? Many businesses are pivoting to online services due to COVID-19 restrictions, and you can now see local businesses offering online classes, appointments and estimates, right on Google Search and Maps. Search using terms like “yoga classes near me,” “hair salons” or “piano lessons” to see some of the businesses near you offering these services—and even book directly on Google Search or Maps via a number of our Reserve with Google partners.
Book an online class with Google Maps

4. Buy a gift card or leave a donation

If you have the means, purchase a gift card or make a donation to help businesses in your community. Doing so gives business owners the funds to support employees, while reassuring them that they’ll have your business in the future. If you’re in the U.S., the U.K. or Canada, you can simply type "support local businesses" or a similar term in Google Search to see a list of businesses in your area that are accepting donations or offering gift cards. And for a limited time, you can also click the banner in your Google Maps app on your phone to find businesses near you that are looking for support. Businesses in more than 25 countries can now set up gift card or donation campaigns through Google My Business.

Buy a Gift Card or Donate to a local business

5. Make a reservation for a future appointment

Missed reservations and skipped services are understandable these days, but they can be stressful to local business owners and employees. Consider rescheduling services and appointments for a future date so you can assure local merchants that they still have your business. Plenty of salons and other businesses take appointments and reservations directly from Search or Maps.


Book a later appointment

6. Order delivery or takeout

Many restaurants and bars that are closed for dine-in service have pivoted to takeout and delivery. If you’re not in the mood to cook, treat yourself while supporting one of your local restaurants. Use Google Maps to find restaurants around you that are offering takeout, curbside pickup, delivery, or no-contact delivery.


Takeout and delivery options in Google Maps

6 ways you can support local businesses with Google Maps

Editor’s Note: Small businesses are crucial to our communities. As we head into International Small Business Day on June 27, we’ve compiled six Google Maps tips anyone can use to help small businesses during the pandemic. 

As cities and economies start to reopen, people are looking for ways to support their favorite small businesses. We recently announced new features to help business owners get support, adjust operations and reach customers in new ways, and have heard from people around the world that they want to support their favorite small businesses. 

Here are six easy ways you can show support for small businesses in your community right now:


1. Report a place as re-opened and edit other helpful information 

Business owners may not have the time or resources to keep the information on their online listing updated. If you know a business has reopened to the public, but it’s still marked as closed on Google Search or Maps, you can report it as re-opened. Click on the “Temporarily Closed” banner on the business and select “Suggest an edit” to let us know that the business has reopened. And for businesses that have reopened with different hours, you can also submit updated open hours information.

Update the Temporarily Closed label on Google Maps

2. Spread the word with reviews, ratings and photos

Share your experience. Writing about a restaurant’s well-executed takeout window or adding photos of the menu or dish you ordered in your Maps review can help businesses you love attract more customers.


Leave a review on Google Maps

3. Try an online class

Missing your go-to yoga studio or in desperate need of a consultation with your hair stylist? Many businesses are pivoting to online services due to COVID-19 restrictions, and you can now see local businesses offering online classes, appointments and estimates, right on Google Search and Maps. Search using terms like “yoga classes near me,” “hair salons” or “piano lessons” to see some of the businesses near you offering these services—and even book directly on Google Search or Maps via a number of our Reserve with Google partners.
Book an online class with Google Maps

4. Buy a gift card or leave a donation

If you have the means, purchase a gift card or make a donation to help businesses in your community. Doing so gives business owners the funds to support employees, while reassuring them that they’ll have your business in the future. If you’re in the U.S., the U.K. or Canada, you can simply type "support local businesses" or a similar term in Google Search to see a list of businesses in your area that are accepting donations or offering gift cards. And for a limited time, you can also click the banner in your Google Maps app on your phone to find businesses near you that are looking for support. Businesses in more than 25 countries can now set up gift card or donation campaigns through Google My Business.

Buy a Gift Card or Donate to a local business

5. Make a reservation for a future appointment

Missed reservations and skipped services are understandable these days, but they can be stressful to local business owners and employees. Consider rescheduling services and appointments for a future date so you can assure local merchants that they still have your business. Plenty of salons and other businesses take appointments and reservations directly from Search or Maps.


Book a later appointment

6. Order delivery or takeout

Many restaurants and bars that are closed for dine-in service have pivoted to takeout and delivery. If you’re not in the mood to cook, treat yourself while supporting one of your local restaurants. Use Google Maps to find restaurants around you that are offering takeout, curbside pickup, delivery, or no-contact delivery.


Takeout and delivery options in Google Maps

6 ways you can support local businesses with Google Maps

Editor’s Note: Small businesses are crucial to our communities. As we head into International Small Business Day on June 27, we’ve compiled six Google Maps tips anyone can use to help small businesses during the pandemic. 

As cities and economies start to reopen, people are looking for ways to support their favorite small businesses. We recently announced new features to help business owners get support, adjust operations and reach customers in new ways, and have heard from people around the world that they want to support their favorite small businesses. 

Here are six easy ways you can show support for small businesses in your community right now:


1. Report a place as re-opened and edit other helpful information 

Business owners may not have the time or resources to keep the information on their online listing updated. If you know a business has reopened to the public, but it’s still marked as closed on Google Search or Maps, you can report it as re-opened. Click on the “Temporarily Closed” banner on the business and select “Suggest an edit” to let us know that the business has reopened. And for businesses that have reopened with different hours, you can also submit updated open hours information.

Update the Temporarily Closed label on Google Maps

2. Spread the word with reviews, ratings and photos

Share your experience. Writing about a restaurant’s well-executed takeout window or adding photos of the menu or dish you ordered in your Maps review can help businesses you love attract more customers.


Leave a review on Google Maps

3. Try an online class

Missing your go-to yoga studio or in desperate need of a consultation with your hair stylist? Many businesses are pivoting to online services due to COVID-19 restrictions, and you can now see local businesses offering online classes, appointments and estimates, right on Google Search and Maps. Search using terms like “yoga classes near me,” “hair salons” or “piano lessons” to see some of the businesses near you offering these services—and even book directly on Google Search or Maps via a number of our Reserve with Google partners.
Book an online class with Google Maps

4. Buy a gift card or leave a donation

If you have the means, purchase a gift card or make a donation to help businesses in your community. Doing so gives business owners the funds to support employees, while reassuring them that they’ll have your business in the future. If you’re in the U.S., the U.K. or Canada, you can simply type "support local businesses" or a similar term in Google Search to see a list of businesses in your area that are accepting donations or offering gift cards. And for a limited time, you can also click the banner in your Google Maps app on your phone to find businesses near you that are looking for support. Businesses in more than 25 countries can now set up gift card or donation campaigns through Google My Business.

Buy a Gift Card or Donate to a local business

5. Make a reservation for a future appointment

Missed reservations and skipped services are understandable these days, but they can be stressful to local business owners and employees. Consider rescheduling services and appointments for a future date so you can assure local merchants that they still have your business. Plenty of salons and other businesses take appointments and reservations directly from Search or Maps.


Book a later appointment

6. Order delivery or takeout

Many restaurants and bars that are closed for dine-in service have pivoted to takeout and delivery. If you’re not in the mood to cook, treat yourself while supporting one of your local restaurants. Use Google Maps to find restaurants around you that are offering takeout, curbside pickup, delivery, or no-contact delivery.


Takeout and delivery options in Google Maps