Two crucial announcements made by Google this week – although not directed to
small businesses – are obviously meant to be noted for local search visibility
in the future.
Visibility on Google Maps is the focus of one of these announcements,
while the second one is centred on search results of Google regarding
the expansion of product inventory listings availability.
Therefore, it does not matter if your business is service-based or
product-based. These future opportunities are worth watching out for.
Business Logo Showing on Google Maps
Companies can have their logos displayed on Google Maps, to replace Google’s
generic graphics. This ‘first of its kind’ service is obtainable at a fee;
the service is what Google calls ‘sponsored map icons’. Undoubtedly,
it is distinct from the bland colors; however, the case may be different when
several companies are placing their logos on the map.
Right now, this service can only be accessed by a limited set of United States
companies that have popular brands as well as multiple locations.
On the other hand, it is most likely that this may translate into something that
even a local advertiser can attain.
Those who use AdWords (with local target in mind) have been able to display
an icon at the appearance of their ad on the map. Presently,
if you are a Google Tags user, your red map marker would have the yellow icons
appear next to it.
Thus, it is easy to infer that Sponsored Map Icons would
become widely obtainable. When this happens, local businesses with
identifiable logo would benefit from it.
Product Inventory Showing in Google Search Results
For some months now, Google has carried on with this but on a limited basis.
However, they embarked on an expansion of this feature for
wider adoption in the course of this week. The red map marker comes up
in Google’s search results, accompanied with a message – “In stock nearby”.
To be a participant, you need to meet certain technical and feed-related directives.
Before you fill out the ‘Interest Form’ that enables you to apply and
participate, it is essential to read the help documentation first.
The two captivating Google announcements are no doubts, signals of future events.
Here’s one of the numerous comments about this development; “this is likely to
be an excellent feature for small businesses; however, it is still in test mode, and
I’m anxiously waiting for its full manifestation to see the benefits it will avail
me as a small business owner”.