So recently, Google+ was updated in the way it presented local results. It was a rather quiet update actually: The only people who knew that there were some major changes, were the SEO blogs and platforms that broadcast the information.
So what is this update and change about?
The Coming of Google+ Communities & Collections
Google has changed the way Google+ works. If you’ve never really heard of Google+, that’s okay. It isn’t a famous or popular app/social media platform.
In fact, Google+ was created, in a way, as a response to the growing popularity of Facebook back in 2011.
Google+ was created as a place where people could have meet ups (similar to Facebook) and discuss common themed topics and belong to communities of their choosing.
But it could never compete with Facebook. It really wasn’t even a competition at all.
So, what exactly did Google revamp?
Well, it is now used as a place for ‘interests’
What does that mean?
If one were to to have a look at the older pages of Google+ for a local business, several things will be seen on a local business’ page: Contact information, address, ratings,and other social media tools like who in your friend list has also visited the place.
Effectively, all of that has been taken away.
The only things that was has left behind, are businesses’ basic contact information like its number, and address.
Google is now focusing instead on building communities and groups(or ‘collections’) on Google+.
Why Was It Even Done?
As mentioned above, Google+ was somewhat meant to be the counter answer to Facebook.
However, it never gained much traction (Actually, it gained almost negligible traction).
So instead of prolonging the suffering of a failing social media network (and losing money by maintaining it), Google decided to axe it and just build on what works.
What Does This Mean for the Local Businesses?
After taking a look at the new and old Google+ pages, there isn’t any significant impact on local businesses, simply because very few people visit the wayward social media for local business information.
If anything, people are more inclined to access its Facebook page for information instead.
Any information of local businesses are still available when it’s googled
If one were to do a search for a local business in their area, all the information is still displayed on its search page.
Basically, nothing with Google Business
has changed either.
Any information a that a business owner entered is still stored and kept within its database, and displayed when there are search hits for his business: Address, phone number, operating hours etc.
So, if you happen to visit Google+ and notice the difference, fret not! It is merely a retooling and removing what doesn’t work in Google+ and adding what does.
Still, it would take some getting used to for regular patrons of the social media platform.
That said, if you’re a business owner, don’t worry! You should still submit your businesses to the Google search pages and its various business tools.
There is still an extremely strong correlation between business exposure and online hits on the search page.
So go ahead, just add your information and let the business roll into through your doors!