What’s New with Google Places for Business?

If you are a business owner with a local presence, you have probably heard about Google Places for Business and understand its effect on SEO. Since last May, Google has been updating its business listings from Google Places to Google+ Local. This process has been very, very slow and is confusing to most people who are accustomed to just using Google Places to manage their business listings. Let’s take a look at what’s new for Google Places to sort through some of the confusion.

Updated Dashboard

For starters, the Google Places dashboard has been updated and is more consistent with the look and feel of other Google products, particularly Google+. The new dashboard has an updated interface that makes editing info easier; contains listing and per-field updates that show the status of your business information on maps; and contains insights to help you track your business’s performance on Google.

Businesses with Google Places and Google+ Accounts

If you have a business page in Google Places and a Google+ business page you are not alone. Google says the following if you have an existing Google Places account:

Sit tight and continue to use Google Places for Business to update and edit your listing. The update currently affects new users only. Please do not make new accounts/pages for listings that already exist. Please know that the update will be gradually rolling out to existing Google Places for Business users like you in the coming weeks.

And the following for those with a Google+ page:

Continue to use Google+ to manage the page. We do not recommend making any additional accounts or pages for pages that already exist.

What About Integrating my Two Accounts?

If you have been in the Google Places for Business game for a while you probably have two accounts. Integration of the two accounts is not yet available but is coming soon says Google. They say you will be able to upgrade a listing to a local Google+ page right from Google Places for Business. Again, we will have to sit tight.

A Noteworthy Change for Service-Area Businesses

If you are a business that serves customers at their locations (like a plumber for example) you will be able to have a Google+ page for the first time. You can have a Google Places page now where you can make the selection “My business has service areas where I visit customers at their locations” that is currently unavailable on Google+.

Conclusion

When this whole merger is all said and done there will only be two types of local business pages- verified and unverified. The product will retain the Google Places for Business name but have much of the Google+ functionality.

Still confused on how this affects your business (it does)? Contact Tampa SEO today for more information on local business optimization and local SEO.

 

Posted in: Blog, Google by on June 23rd, 2013 Comments (0)

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