Google revamps Local reviews

Earlier this year in May, Google announced the replacement of Google Places with Google+ Local; part of its strategy to bring together Google products with Google+ at their centre.

Google+ Local is integrated with other Google services, including Google Search and Google Maps. If you use Search or Maps to find a business venue, Google+ Local page results will be displayed.

As an owner of a business venue you should check your Local page to ensure it’s up to date and has transitioned correctly from Google Places. If you’ve not yet claimed your Local page you should do so by selecting the Manage this page button on the right hand side. As a user, you can search for specific places or browse through various categories of listings such as restaurants, cafes, bars and hotels.

Rather than the potentially confusing 1-5 scale Google have introduced a ‘poor, fair, good, very good or excellent’ rating system for each business listed. This is then converted into a score out of 30 for the business. The numerical scores originally came from Zagat, which was bought by Google. It would also help if the overall score out of 30 was converted to text rather than a number and perhaps this could be a future improvement.

Once you’ve added a rating you’re then prompted to share to your Circles (your Google+ network).

Another improvement is that the reviews made are now listed on profiles thus providing extra exposure for the business.

To learn more about Google+ and Google+ Local and how it can help your business book onto one of my Cheltenham Google+ Masterclasses.

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