HometownLocal Analytics

Google is Moving Away from Google+ for Business Reviews. Your Current Online Reviews and Local Listings will be Affected.

Google announced late last year that they were introducing a “new redesigned” Google+. This is their fourth attempt at gaining additional market exposure in an otherwise crowded arena. First launched in 2011, Google+ was a way for Google to enter the social media frenzy.

Google’s new redesign is centered around Communities and Collections, they hope to capitalize on people’s shared interests and topics. Google ultimately hopes this new design and concept will compete better with Facebook and other social media platforms. Additionally, it offers ease of use and a better mobile-friendly experience.

New Google + Introduction

How does this affect my reviews and business listings?

Google has separated local business pages (remember Google Places?) from Google+. You now get directed to a business’ Google Maps listing rather than their Google+ page. As you recall, reviews were collected and displayed on Google+, now reviews are collected and displayed on the business’ Google Maps listing (see below).

Google Maps

Looking for your new Google Maps page? You can now find your business page and location (URL) by going to your Google My Business account dashboard. If you need a refresher on Google My Business, check out this post.

Separating these two services has created a level of frustration for both the business and customer alike. Our advice is to go to your Google My Business account and ask the following:

  1.  Is my business listing information correct?
  2.  Is my contact information correct for both Google Maps & Google+?
  3.  Does my website have correct links for both generating & displaying reviews?
  4.  How does this change affect my review acquisition strategy?

Local marketing changes quickly and most small businesses have little or no control over their listings, reviews, or SEO strategy. At HometownLocal, we help you take back control of your local online presence. We offer simple tools and the expertise to help you stay ahead of these impactful changes. Contact us today for a free demonstration.