Google announced the introduction of Place Search, a new feature that will help users to find information related to local business.
Whenever there is a search related to location, Google will show these blended results, combination of organic and local. In addition to that, Google also have added a link to the left side Menu called Places, so users can get only local results.
When entering a local query, Google will deliver results accompanied by a red pin and will contain information such as thumbnail, phone number, address, link to place page, and reviews page by Google users and reviews from around the web.
Example: toronto plumber " before (old 7 pack)
Notice the following observations for the keyword Toronto plumber:
- Waterworkscanada.com ranks #1. That is an organic result as Waterworks.com hasnt been on the 7 pack of local results Google previously would show, but because waterworks has a place page, Google attaches the place page to the result.
- Same case with #2 Expressrooter.com, in this case Google is giving it priority and rank it one position higher. Expressrooter. was #3 organically and not showing in the 7 pack but now it went to #2 with local information included.
What This Means To You
With this new change Google is pushing business owners to have a Google Places profile page. Its is a must now.
Besides many other suggestions we have been providing on Google Places Optimization. It is also important to consider the following:
- Have a Thumbnail
The first image you upload to your Place profile will be the thumbnail. Its important to add a thumbnail as it will be very prominent on the Place Search results
- Monitor your reviews
This is a strong reason to monitor your reviews online. With this new feature, access to reviews has become easier than before. Not only the reviews by Google users but also reviews from around the web. Those reviews will contribute to the review sentiment that will determine the Star Rating.
The new place results took place on Wednesday, it can take few days until the new search feature will be available everywhere.