We are hearing ever more about personalised recommendations, reviews and ratings systems within individual websites. Whether it is Loren Baker at the SearchEngineJournal commenting on the increasing power of Social media voting and user views of particular videos for first page results or perhaps that of Technorati Authority and it’s relationship with Google’s ranking and PageRank algorithms.
Enhanced Google business listings, which, using the example of the Travel industry, draw from a number of recourses including Tripadvisor and TabletHotels, have been reported to boost local search listings. With the introduction of universal search within the UK, this is certainly something business owners should be harnessing.
Running a search for ‘New York hotels’ on Google Maps will return a vast list of various accommodations in the city, however many will be differentiated with reviews, photos, comprehensive contact details, payment terms and perhaps even the hotel’s logo.
The example given for the Hilton Millennium includes 385 reviews and 35 photos – which certainly beats a traditional name and address listing.
An extract from the ineedhits blog details an actual user’s experience on Google Maps, concluding that users are more likely to convert into enquiries, and, using the example of travel, customers if they are presented with as much relevant information as possible to enable them to make an informed choice from the range of companies offering a particular product or service.
In addition Google’s enhanced top-of-the-page listings are being returned for individual business lookups, such as a specific restaurants or location-specific business searches. We have run a search for “Hilton Millennium new york” and the following screen grab shows the results.
Considering the scenario that a prospective traveller might print off a map and directions to your hotel, as well as noting the telephone number to confirm his reservation, isn’t it worth ensuring the information is correct?, particularly if it is supplementing Google’s ‘Local’ results?
But Google’s Local Business listings aren’t just for Hotels, and should be considered like a hard copy of the Yellow Pages, where you can list your business, its location, and in light of this blog post, a detailed amount of relevant information for prospective customers. You might also like to encourage your customers to add a review to your listing as a means of differentiating you and your business from existing listings.
Further information about listing your business on Google Local, which is FREE, visit google.com/local/add