google-g-logo-2015-1920-800x450Just in time for the holidays, Google has announced that now, businesses are able to add “special hours” to their local listings within their Google My Business listings.

With these “special hours,” local businesses will be able to inform their customers about longer or shorter store hours based on things like the upcoming holidays or any special events that might be going on within the store.  This is going to be an important feature for this time of year, so Google is expecting it to launch in early November.

Marissa Nordahl from Google wrote,

[T]he holiday season is fast approaching and with it customers looking for last minute gifts; they are wondering when they can visit your business and counting on your business information being correct on Google.”

If you decide to add special hours to your My Business account, Google will display the hours to users in your Google Maps listing.  But, if you don’t add those hours, Google will add a disclaimer saying that the hours might be wrong.

“Google will add a disclaimer to let customers know that your ‘hours might differ’ for that holiday,” Nordahl said.

Here’s what the special hours will look like:

google-my-business-special-hours-1446555941

Here’s a shot of the disclaimer:

google-my-business-special-hours2-1446555941

There is a comprehensive help document that is posted by Google that gives your three different methods for setting special hours for your business.  Each of these methods requires that you provide regular hours.  Without them, Google isn’t going to let you set any special hours.  Here are the three methods for setting the special hours:

  1. Set special hours via spreadsheet.
  2. Set special hours online.
  3. Set hours that extend into the next day.

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