For many years, creating a free website with Google Business Profile was a great option for cash-strapped and time-poor business owners. However, Google has announced that the basic websites created through Googler Business Profile will be deactivated on the 1st of March, 2024, giving SMEs a deadline to migrate to a new website provider.

This change has come as a result of the sale of Google’s domain business to Squarespace in 2023. The impending shutdown will result in websites made with Google Business Profile being removed from Business Profiles on the 1st of March. Subsequently, the website URL will redirect customers to the Business Profile until the 10th of June. After this date, visitors will encounter a “page not found” error”. This critical shift emphasizes the need for affected businesses to act promptly.

It is important to note that this will only affect business owners who have created a website through Google Business Profile (formerly Google My Business). You will know if your website was created through this platform, as your domain will end in ‘’. Those with active Google Ads campaigns linked to their websites will also need to update their campaigns accordingly.

If you are one of the affected businesses, you must act swiftly to keep your business online. The importance of a functional website cannot be overstated, as customers rely on it to discover offerings, obtain crucial information such as opening hours and contact details, and establish a digital connection with the business.

While this change may pose challenges, it also presents an opportunity for businesses to upgrade their online presence. Google Business Profile websites, known for their simplicity, are becoming overshadowed by more sophisticated alternatives as SMEs increasingly establish their online presence. This development serves as a reminder that free websites, though beneficial for startups, eventually necessitate an upgrade to platforms offering greater control over hosting, design elements, and functionality.

To create a new website, you will have to register a domain and find a new hosting platform. If you are looking to register a domain ending in ‘’, the .au Domain Administration (auDA) has a list of accredited registrars and resellers here. As for creating the website itself, you can either pay a website developer for a bespoke website (which can be costly), or explore some of the recommended free or low-cost platforms as follows:

Once your new website is up and running, you will need to add it to your Google Business Profile.

As the deadline approaches, affected businesses must act decisively to transition smoothly to a new website provider. This change, while initially challenging, offers an opportunity for businesses to explore platforms that align with their evolving needs and provide enhanced functionalities.

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