Google Place Search Leads Local Services Push
Google has significantly accelerated its local search and advertising plans as it battles location-based services from rivals Foursquare, Facebook, Twitter and Yelp.Google in October has significantly accelerated its local search and advertising plans as it seeks to rival location-based service efforts of Foursquare, Facebook, Twitter and Yelp. In analyzing its search engine traffic, Google has found 40 percent of its U.S. traffic is local in nature. To address this high percentage, this month Google has:
- Appointed Marissa Mayer to run its geolocation services unit.
- Introduced a new design for how reviews are displayed on Place pages. This new design was added in Google Maps for Android Oct. 28.
- Added a location tab to the left-hand panel of its search results page on Google.com.
- Launched Google Boost, new online ad program that lets local business owners build online search ads from their Google Places account.
- Added photos for businesses Place pages to give consumers looking online for local restaurants, clothing or other wares an idea of what the shops offer.
- Launched Google Place Search, which aggregates information about places when users do a search for a local restaurant, landmark or business.
While these are separate announcements, they actually fit snugly together. Google Place Pages are essentially local business advertisements in themselves, offering searchers store info such as addresses, phone numbers, Website links, photos, reviews and ratings in one concise view.