“Honey, where should we go to dinner?”“I don’t know. Where do you want to go?”
“What about that place across from where we went for your birthday? The Italian one, with the outdoor seating… what’s it called?”
Sound a bit familiar (and frustrating)? Fear no longer: Google is here to help with the introduction of Google Places. You can find everything from dry cleaners to art museums, and even “that Italian place with the outdoor seating.” This new feature is sure to revolutionize the way people search for places even more so than its predecessor, Place Page.
Many of the same features of the Place Page will be carried over to Google Places, and users will be privy to some of the best information sources on the internet. Photos, updates, coupons, hours of operation, videos, offerings, reviews and other information will aid in customer’s decision-making process.
The wild success of the original Place Page, featuring more than 50 million places across the globe, fueled the upgraded version to Google Places. Now businesses can target their customers better than ever, through:
- Tags: Add Tags on Google.com and Google Maps to differentiate from competitors.
- Areas of Service: Include the specific geographic service areas.
- Photos: Showcase your establishment with a complimentary photo shoot.
- QR Codes: Distribute your business’ special Quick Response (QR) codes on all marketing materials. Once obtained by customers, these codes (similar to barcodes) can be scanned by smartphones and then will direct them to your mobile page.
- Favorite Places: Google will choose 50,000 U.S. businesses to be displayed as their “favorite places.” Those selected will receive window decals that can be scanned by smartphones and also direct them to the mobile website.
- Promotion: Post current sales, events, news and promotions and even distribute coupons on your page.
Not only will these improvements benefit browsers, it will help business owners track the success of their efforts. Google Places data conveys useful information for business owners, including how users found the business by the keywords they searched, how often people have discovered the business using Google and which geographic areas the customers came from. This dashboard is a vital tool, as it equips businesses with valuable knowledge and advises them about how to better serve and communicate with their customers.