Smart Pages, Microsoft’s free website building service, is available to all US-based small and medium-sized businesses, the company announced Wednesday. Microsoft has also added new features to the service, including video embeds, text suggestions, integration with Bing Maps and an updated Social Posts section.
Why we care. Far too many SMBs operate with just a social media profile or a local listing as their only online presence. Having your own website opens up more opportunities to connect with potential customers and drive both online and in-store traffic. Now that this service is more widely available, more business owners can use it to establish a basic website for free.
And, the new features, particularly the video embeds and Bing Maps integration, can be used to improve user experience while providing relevant business information.
The new features. Microsoft is releasing the following features for Smart Pages this month:
- Video embeds – Business owners can now embed YouTube or Vimeo videos on their Smart Page.
- Text suggestions – Smart Pages will generate text suggestions to help business owners fill out more of their business’s information.
- Bing Maps integration – A Bing Map of the business’s location can now be added to Smart Pages.
- Social Posts section – This section of the interface has been updated to allow business owners to write updates without having to post them on Facebook first. This particular feature will roll out by the end of the month.
More on Smart Pages. Microsoft first launched Smart Pages in February 2021. Until now, businesses that were interested in the service had to sign up for the closed beta.
In October 2021, Microsoft announced the website builder’s first round of feature updates, which included an analytics dashboard and the ability to create a Smart Page from directly within a Bing Places account.
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