Google has rolled out a new program for local business called Favorite Places. At first glance, the program looks promising. But I can’t help but wonder about the implementation.
Google has picked 100,000 local U.S. businesses to be “favorite places.” They sent these businesses a decal to place on their store windows. It is expected that mobile phone users will scan the decals to learn more about the the businesses and to leave a review of them. Question: How serious do you think mobile phone users will be to take advantage of this moment? Mobile searchers already have that capability with other websites.
This looks like another Google attempt to move into an area where someone else is already doing a better job and where Google thinks it might pick up more advertising money. It is, after all, a Google Maps program. Google clearly wants to add your business to its database. What then? I suspect you’ll start getting snail mail from the company, and possibly e-mail, offering you opportunities to advertise through Google AdWords.
What do you think? Is this a slick advertising move on Google’s part or do you think it will actually attract support from businesses and mobile searchers alike? Would you do it? You can.