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Google Places ( is any business’ way into a free listing on Google Maps, which gives a listing and small page to every business it can find, (whether you directly sign up for one or not). This is known as your Google Maps page or listing. You can enter a 200-character description as well as add ten images and five videos. You also select your categories and add a few more details as well. Things are always changing at Google and although you can still enter all this information, they do not display it all. Just know you will still want to fill everything out when you are getting set up.

Another thing you see with Google Places is online reviews. This is very important. If a consumer is looking for a business, he or she will base a large part of the decision regarding a particular business on reviews left by others who have used that product or service. Reviews come from online directories and review sites. Google looks to see what sites have reviews about your business and they display that right on your listing. Customers can also review your business straight through Google Places. It is very important to monitor your online reputation on Google Maps/Places—the reviews here can make or break your potential customers’ decisions on whether to use your services or buy your products. What can you do about bad reviews? Answer them! Answer them in a positive, helpful way. Show the consumer you’re sorry that he or she had a bad experience, offer to make it up to them, and maybe even give them the name of a manager that can hook them up with something extra on their next visit. Google Places can be one of the most powerful forces in your Internet marketing if you help it reach its full potential.

Google Places for Business not only secures your place on Google Maps but also has now become increasingly married to Google+. If you do a search on Google Maps for a business and click on the link that lists the number of reviews, you will notice that you are actually taken to that business’ Google+ page. Here are the features you will see on such a page:

  • Contact Information

    This is the basic contact information for the business, such as address, phone number, website, and hours.
  • Review/Summary

    If the business owner has written a summary about his or her business, it will appear here.
  • Reviews

    These are reviews created by real people online about the business.
  • Photos

    Photos can be added by the business itself or Google+ users.
  • Manage This Page Link

    This link is for the business owner to use when managing his or her own page. In order to manage a Google+ page, you must prove that you are the business owner or at least an authorized representative of that business.

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Data Mining, Data Tracking, Google Tools, Online Tools, Search Engine Optimisation, Web Analytics