Google, the worlds leading search engine is now producing search results which are a lot more social as well as localized. What they have done is combined their Google+ Plus social network, local listings, customer reviews, and then combined them under one search result.
So what this means is that the larger retail chains are now required to add yet another task to their existing online social media efforts. This because Google has recently introduced their new search results query service which is known as Google+ Local.
If you’re a business owner, what Google+ Local has done is automatically extended your existing Google+ social media profile page, and combined it with your local listing on Google, and then sprinkled the results with genuine customer reviews.
So translated, those large retailers with multiple chain stores, for instance, who has say 1000 stores nationwide in North America, will now have 1000 completely separate Google+ Local pages, each of them featuring their own area map as well as details about the individual store.
Google will also include past customer reviews, ratings, scores, and comments from Zagat, a localized review site which Google recently acquired. So included in the local listings, interested consumers will also be able to add their own reviews or add photos of that location where they’re at.
Google To Individually Index
Google is also planning to individually index each of these local pages so that the latest reviews will also appear directly on the organic search results.
For example, if you search for “Home Depot stores in Seattle” on Google, it will return nine results as it’s top listing with the heading “Places for home depot near Seattle, WA, USA”.
The search results will also include the local address as well as a map and the phone number. The result will also display the customer rating score, along with any reviews for each of the individual locations. The consumer will also have the option of clicking on each location’s Google+ page.
The Google+ Local page for the Home Depot store in Redmond, WA. for instance, which is a suburb of Seattle, displays a score of 16 out of 30 with 23 customer reviews.
Retailers Still Control The Google+ Pages Content
When it comes to the Google+ Page, the retailers will still have complete control over the content. Any changes which a particular retailer decides to make on their own individual Google+ page will not transfer to the Google+ Local listings of the other stores.
So as a result, it becomes beneficial for the retailers head office’s social media department to keep track of all their local Google listings to see how the shoppers are reacting to each and every store, or how they’re reviewing their brand.
Every retailer, approximately 80 million Google Place pages, are now all automatically listed as Google+ Local in Google’s organic search results. This regardless if they like their particular listing or not, as any and all unbiased customer reviews and scores will be listed on that location for all to see.
If there is any negative feedback on a particular outlet, however, retailers are able to self manage these pages by they going directly to the individual Google+ Local listing and then clicking the “Manage this page” tab to alter any information if needed.
This also provides additional incentive for the retailers to go and “own” these individual pages since they’re able to add their own content. The companies who decide to claim them are also able to turn them into something that’s relevant and valuable, which should in turn reward them with loyal consumers and additional followers.
Google+ Local Listings There To Help
The local nature which these pages now offer should serve well for national retailers wanting to go individual and local. Consumers are now becoming a lot more aware as well as engaged with companies that happen to be in their local area and are responding to their local issues and trends.
The brand presence for some of these larger national retailers is monolithic. Although it may be a large well known international brand, the idea that their particular “national brand” store is firmly grounded in their local community, while responding and reacting to the local events, issues, or even the weather, makes it a lot more accessible and personable to the consumers.
The Google+ Local information is available on all mobile devices including: laptops, tablets, and smartphones, as well as on Google Maps.