In 2009, Google launched their Google Place Pages. The goal of this tool was to link Google Maps and Google Search into one tool that would allow people to easily locate local businesses related to what service they were looking for. Today, that tool is even more powerful thanks to the prevalence of smart phones and popular apps like Places and Yelp.
A cursory glance of Google’s official Places website makes the whole thing seem very helpful, and it certainly can be. If a business is pro-active, you can optimize your SEO – this is especially easy because Google is smart enough to list local businesses first during any web search – and even include special coupons or offers through places, which may draw business away from nearby competition. However, a business that fails to monitor or make use of their Places listing is asking for trouble. Without up-to-date information, potential customers may wonder if a business is even still open, or what exactly they offer.
Yelp, powered by Google Places, allows users to submit instant reviews and ratings of local businesses. Assuming you maintain even the most basic customer service, you can count on getting local support. That handful of positive reviews from locals can be far more effective than even the best marketing campaign.
Now, for $25 a month, you can take advantage of Google Tags. Tags is an add-on for Places that increases a standard listing to a high-priority search engine listing, as well as access to the aforementioned special offer and coupon features. Google has a one month free trial for the service as well, so you can easily see if it is a good fit for your small business.
Founded in 1989, WebbMason is one of the fastest-growing print and brand management service companies in the United States, helping marketing departments and their internal and external partners save money and streamline processes through a winning combination of industry expertise, exceptional print supply chain partners and technological innovation. Headquartered in Hunt Valley, Maryland, WebbMason has 20 sales offices throughout the United States.