- Google is allowing local businesses to post on Google search and maps to promote their events, products and services, as reported by TechCrunch. Previously, this capability was limited to celebrities, sports teams, movie studios and museums.
- Businesses can use the posts for promotions and can link the posts to websites.
- Posts on Google allow for images, videos, GIFs and text that are akin to social media updates but appear in Google search results.
Local search has become increasingly important for brick-and-mortar marketers with Google research finding 70% of smartphone users making a purchase in a store used their mobile devices to research that purchase in advance.
The value in tapping local search including the newly opened up Post on Google opportunity for local businesses has the potential to connect these businesses with consumers. Users conducting local searches have a high degree of purchase intent according to Nick Neels, head of local search at Location3. He previously told Marketing Dive customers converted through a local search strategy come in at a lower average cost-per-acquisition.
The news is the latest example of how Google is ramping up offerings for mobile searchers, as these consumers now make up more than half of all searches on Google, which updated its app and mobile website to make it easier for U.S. users to find events like concerts, art exhibits, lectures, festivals and sporting events.
Facebook is also ramping up its local offerings, but this is one area where the two platforms maybe more complementary than competitive.
Any local search strategy should begin with Google My Business to ensure that business names, addresses, phone numbers and other details are correct across the internet.