Importance of Google Places for Businesses
The basic know-how for any business is to gain visibility in search engine results either for a local or global market. One of the most effective strategies is to optimize the use of Google’s website listing services such as the Google Places.
Big or small, more and more businesses, are grabbing this free service for their potential customers to find them easily. In fact, according to Google, a large percentage of searches online are related to mapping or location searches for businesses.
What is Google Places?
Google Places is an innovative search facility that focuses on creating a reliable database of places, including those of establishments and businesses. Business owners, who are enlisted with Google, may use this listing service to manage and promote the physical location of their business.
For instance, one customer is looking for lighting fixtures for his new restaurant. Yes, he may be looking only for images or possible products fit for his new restaurant, but in the latter, he may also be looking for places where to purchase them. So, if Business A is advertising lighting products tailored fit for restaurants and offices and is listed in Google Places, their products will be part of Google’s online advertising program that enables them to reach this potential customer who is interested in buying lighting fixtures fit for his new restaurant. This way, a business listing with Google Places can find an excellent opportunity to create brand awareness.
Advantages of Google Places
Employing the use of Google Places is highly recommended, not only for small businesses starting up, but for any business wanting to get a free exposure online. More so, Google Places gives businesses control of their brands.
It allows businesses to manage the information they put in correlation to their brands and present them the way they like it for searchers online to see. One may fill up the information page with information like the business’ logo, photos of business store fronts or products, their description of what services or products they offer, hours of operation, their contact information, and other vital information they want their searchers to know.
Managing all these information is very easy.
Plus, one may change it anytime they wish to, especially if there are important updates or changes to the business information or products and services they offer. First, however, is for the business owner to participate with Google Places’ free online registration, then fill up their information and verify their account. As the account is established, Google Places will simply give a walk through on the following steps to get started and take control of the business and their brands. All these steps make sure that only the right information is displayed for Google Places to advertise.
Other Benefits of Google Places Include:
Google Places is a cost effective local marketing strategy. Unlike other Google advertising systems where clients are charged per click of the researcher, Google Places is absolutely free. Even businesses that did not put up any website yet may register and use their services for free. In fact, it is by far the cheapest means to advertise, even with traditional options like pamphlets and leaflets. More so, their premium options like advertising coupons for first time or repeat customers as well as information where to find the nearest parking in your business is absolutely free.
- Google Places enables businesses to reach millions of online users – numbers have already proven that over 97% of searches are coming from those looking for local businesses or local establishments online. In the first place, this already makes sense because why would someone from New York be looking for something he immediately needs in state. This is why it is important for any business to boost first their local markets before going big, and with Google Places’ great listing, local businesses will have bigger chance for their millions of customers to find them easily.
- Improved search engine page rank – not only does Google Places focuses on local searches, it also prioritizes businesses listed with them in Google’s searches and display them at first rank on search engine result pages. For instance, for a steak house business in Queens’s area New York enlisted with Google Places, will have first priority over other steak house businesses in the same area, giving more potential customers. Then again, Google Places will only show results for steak houses within the Queens’s area and not the entire New York City. Therefore, competition from businesses from other city or states or outside of the locality is restricted. And so, the possibility of a steak house business enlisted with Google Places to be found is much better.
- Freedom for Keyword Traffic- since Google Places allows customers to choose keywords to trigger their businesses. The relevance of this system is that it gives clients enough leeway and be more creative to think of the best and most effective search keywords they think may give them sufficient online traffic.
- Businesses are easily found in Google Maps – giving the exact location of a business gives more access for potential customers to actually buy or take their services. It then becomes hassle free, without having to spend too much time, money, and effort roaming and asking around for the business’ location.
- Google Places is easy to manage – maintaining the information in Google Places is very easy. Business owners only have to log in, and they may edit or update their information anytime. They may even check how many clicks they got or how many people have seen their ads.
- Google Places is available through smart phones – convenience is the key to modern world and with Google Places being on mobile phones, it becomes easy for anyone to locate and reach the exact location of the business they are searching for and this again only means more potential customers.
Craig Corbel is the Vice President of Marketing for Solution Web Designs, an agency specializing in web design and online marketing, including Local SEO services for small business.