Posts tagged with ‘google places’

Google No Longer Posting 3rd Party Reviews On Place Pages

News flash! If you were relying on Yelp, Angie’s List and InsiderPages to get extra reviews on your Google Place pages, you won’t be anymore. Google, under a torrent of criticism, has stopped scrapping those sites’ reviews. 3rd party sites have long complained that Google was using their content, or content generated on their sites, to boost it’s own review service, Google Places. Yelp has been particularly vocal with their displeasure.

This has created a bit of a quandary for small business owners that benefited from having reviews of their businesses aggregated in one place. Now, if you go to a company’s Place Page, it might look a little bare. Only reviews from registered Google users will appear there.

The winners in this scenario are clearly the 3rd party sites. Google will no longer be able to piggyback off of their hard work to bolster it’s own review site. Plus, I think Google will really have to improve their user review process. The losers are users of Google’s search. It will be a bit more time consuming to do research on the companies they are looking into. I don’t think Google is affected in any particularly large way. Their place page results are still going to appear at the top of the SERP’s (Search Engine Results Pages).

What does this mean for business owners? It means that they are going to have to send their satisfied customers to multiple places to post their reviews. I don’t think this is a bad thing, though. For the time being, more people are engaging sites like Yelp and Angie’s List. However, do not ignore Google Places. Not only does it appear at the top of the SERP’s, but it is also gaining traction in the mobile app world. In other words, if you diversify your online presence, you won’t have anything to worry about.

3 Things You Should Be Doing Right Now To Spread Your Word

There are a few things every business should be doing to spread the word about themselves. From dental offices to neighborhood salons, business owners can and should be promoting themselves online. These aren’t hard things to do. All it takes is a little effort.

  1. Google Places – This should be the first place you add your presence online. Places takes the information about your business, and displays it on Google Maps and in search results. Within Places, business hours, address and phone numbers can be displayed. Videos and photos can also be added to further expose your business to potential customers. It’s easy to add a business to Places, and should be done by every business.
  2. Yelp & Angie’s List – Services like Yelp and Angie’s List have become invaluable as people have become more mobile. For instance, my wife and I were on vacation recently, and used Yelp to locate different businesses in the area. Similarly, we use Yelp to guide us to places within our own city. The businesses that don’t add a presence to these types of services are destined to be missed.
  3. Vertical Business Directories – By vertical, I mean industry specific directories. For instance, there are dentist specific directories that compile listings of dental offices in an area. It’s the same with insurance agents, real estate agents and medical doctors. These online directories feed search engines with information about your business, which in turn boosts your search ranking. The end result, of course, is more awareness about your business.

It’s up to you to spread the word about your business. Start with these 3 things, and you’ll be headed in the right direction!