In an effort to continue cleaning up search engine results, Google released another major search algorithm update, this time dubbed “Penguin”. Released on April 24th, this update is working to eliminate Google Places, and instead replace it with Google Plus Local, which should also help increase user interactions on Google Plus. But this update is just the beginning, as Google plans to further interface Google Plus Local with Zagat in order to create a seamless online review platform.
As this update will have a huge affect on local businesses and how they are found in search, a notification about the conversion has gone out to all those who are listed on Google Places. It is important to check your Google Plus Local listing now, as it is not only replacing Google Places but also integrating with Google Maps – and you would not want your business to disappear from Google Maps search!
As the mitigation from Google Places to Google Plus Local takes place, there have been changes in the Dashboard view of listings, and currently the listings do not show whether or not they are claimed or verified. It is hoped that this is a work in progress on Google’s part, so it is recommended that you continue to check your Google account at least once a week to see what is going on with your listing.
By integrating Google Places with Google Plus Listings, Google is helping to ensure that your listing can be found through a variety of mediums, including Google search, Google Maps, mobile search, and Google Plus, and also allows your customers to recommend your business to their family and friends, as well as provide reviews for other potential customers to read.
If you need help making the transition from Google Local to Google Plus Listings, or with anything related to Local listings, contact SMT online or call SMT at 407.682.2222 today for a consultation!