Continuing its quest to make Google+ a powerful and irresistible social media tool, Google today has merged its local listing service Google Places into its social network to become Google+ Local. This new service takes after its older brother, but Google hopes that the added network of users will be much more active in searching for places and writing reviews. Google Places was a necessity for any and all local businesses to increase their searchability and be discovered by new clients online. Now, with the service married to Google’s newest social network, having an optimized business profile is more important than ever.
The future is clear: Google+ Local will soon be the go-to place for searches on Google for local businesses like contractors. Any search done on Google.com will automatically bring up Google+ Local results for your area. This has been the case over the last couple of months as Google has been providing more “socially aware” search results to users. For a while, Google has wanted to improve results to users by using information they get from that user’s friends and interests. Now, with local listings in the mix, the reviews your friends and associates make will be a deciding factor in search results.
Soon, your business’ relevance will be solely based not on how good you say your business is, but how good everyone else says it is. That is why using Google+ Local will be so important to your business. Without an optimized profile and a lot of great client reviews, your business will be lost on the do-not-call list, missing out on the huge (and growing) online audience.
So the switch has been flipped, what happens now? Well, for those of you who already had Google Places set up for your local business, Google has done the favor of converting that listing into a Google+ Local listing. You can claim it by finding your business on the new service and clicking ‘Manage this page’ on the right side under the main image.
If, on the other hand, you never got on the Google Places bandwagon, this is the time to set up your local business profile and start getting reviews! Having a local listing on Google’s platform will be invaluable to finding new local clients seeking your services.
Whether you’ve been sitting on a profile for a while or you need to create a new one from scratch, this is the time to double-down on your local online presence and optimize your options. Come back to the JobNimbus Blog soon to see our guide to optimizing your local business listing for Google+ Local. We’ll have some invaluable advice and great techniques to help you create the ultimate listing for whatever your specialty is.