How the New Google Plus Local Changes will Affect your Tacoma or Seattle Business

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Jonathan Phillips

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On September 29, 2012
Last modified:September 29, 2012

Summary:

Businesses using Google Places need information on the merging of Google Places and Google+ . Things are changing rapidly, and you don't want your hard-earned reviews to go missing. Find out late-breaking information on this internet marketing topic.

tacoma wa social mediaGoogle+ and Google Places Changes In 2012

Your Tacoma or Seattle business should already have a Google Places Page, and have optimized it to the max.  Once that’s done, you’re golden, right?  If only that were true!

Google is like a river that is driven by a flood.  It is constantly updating, and making huge changes in the way it does things.

Something big has been in the works for almost a year now, when Google opened up Google+ to anyone with a Gmail account.  Why in the world would Google want to try to recreate Facebook?  Google is the reigning search engine and has been for years. Why are they trying to start from scratch and fight the reigning social network?

Because they’re merging a social network into the search engine.  Whether that’s a good thing or not will remain to be seen, since Google has created/bought concepts before and discarded them when they didn’t reach their goals.  (Anyone remember Google ‘Buzz’?)

With that in mind, here’s some information about the most recent change in the Google ‘river’ of information.

Google has finally announced and implemented its highly anticipated switch from Google Pages to Google+ Local and the implications for what this means for your business has dire consequences.  It is vital that you understand the changes and begin to take advantage of Google + Local to boost your business before your competition does so.  Luckily, we have a few innovative strategies for you lined up here in this article.

Google Pages to Google+ Local

Chances are if you’re reading this, you already have a Google Page for your business (if you don’t, you really need to go set one up right now).  What this switch has done is basically place a “Local” tab on the left hand side of user’s browsers which allows them to click and instantly see any restaurants and businesses in their immediate area.  Further, these pages are ranked in order of review scores with a special weight given to a user’s friends and family’s ratings.

Now, with just one listing, your business will be found across Google searches, maps, mobile apps and Google+.  Plus, your customers can now review your establishment and recommend it much easier.

And this is such a vital switch because studies show that on average, 50% of all searches for businesses and restaurants are coming from mobile phones.  That means that you could potentially be missing out on half of your customers if you aren’t taking advantage of Google Plus Local.  And with the trend only continuing towards more and more people having tablets and androids, the percentages of mobile app searches are only going to rise in the next few years.

But perhaps the biggest feature here is that these Local pages will be indexed.  This means that users will be able to find them on regular Google searches as well, so your chances of being found greatly increase…if you are getting customer ratings that is.

So What Should You Do?

As mentioned, get a Google Business Page if you don’t already have one.  Then, take advantage of the new page building features that Google is allowing with Local.

  • Post more pictures
  • Manage your profile with the new streamlined look and keep it lively
  • Host “hangouts” at your restaurant to boost attendance
  • Post more updates for increased interaction to stay fresh in customer’s minds
  • MOST IMPORTANTLY: GET REVIEWS

This last point is so vital because your business will now be found by digital word of mouth.  The more people are talking good about you, the better off your business will be.  Seems simple right?  But the implications are much greater: because of the indexing, your ratings will be out there for all to see for all time with the click of a button.

Many businesspeople are not comfortable with soliciting reviews. You can accept compliments when they’re offered, but are you up to asking ‘would you put that on your google page?’  I don’t blame you.  It takes an experienced salesperson and marketer to do that.

We have no qualms asking customers to rate businesses.  We have both a social review program and a reputation management program (usually used when the review aren’t what you’d want!)

Let us know if we can help your Tacoma or Seattle business with these new and important Google+ and Google Places changes.

Google+ and Google Places Changes In 2012

Businesses using Google Places need information on the merging of Google Places and Google+ . Things are changing rapidly, and you don't want your hard-earned reviews to go missing. Find out late-breaking information on this internet marketing topic.
Posted in: Google Places, Google Plus, internet marketing tacoma, Tacoma and Seattle Business SEO and Marketing Tags: , , , , , No Comments »

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