Google is changing the way businesses can define their service areas. Before September, business could set their service areas with a distance marker, such as “100 mile radius.”

That option is currently being exchanged for a geographical marker related to the closest city or county. Service-area businesses currently based on a distance will be automatically converted to the closest named areas, like Kirkwood, Mo. or St. Clair County, Il.

The intent is to help users find you more easily in areas that you serve, rather than where you are located.

As part of the transition, Google is sending out recommendations for cities in your area. Business owners must approve the recommended cities before they will be added to a business profile. Google is also providing an option that would allow business to manually choose individual cities.

Business owners will be able to review these updates in their Google My Business account under Google updates, and can either accept or provide a new service area. They’ll also receive an email notification about the change.

If our team at Web Design by Knight currently manages your Google Business account, then there is no action you need to take at this time. We will update your profile. For clients who manage their own Google Business account, we suggest you go in and make the necessary changes.

Using Web Design by Knight as an example, here is what you might see.