If you haven’t already checked out the new Place Pages interface in Google Maps yet, try this sample search for Barbara Oliver & Company Jewelry in Buffalo and you’ll see the full page information layout that is causing buzz in Local Search circles this week.
If you’d like to read up on this, take a gander at my latest Search Engine Guide Post, Google Maps Place Pages Widens Local Horizons, and don’t miss these insightful posts from Mike Blumenthal and Greg Sterling.
Initially, word had it that Google would not be indexing these Wikipedia-like information pages about businesses, neighborhoods, landmarks and cities, but Mike Blumenthal reports that he is already seeing them in the SERPs and that certainly makes sense to me. We’re awaiting clarification from Google on this point, but just imagine how powerful a Place Page could be for any small business making an effort to occupy as many places in the organic results as possible with good, positive, informative entries for their brand name search – possibly even for other keyword searches.
It’s early days yet, but I think Place Pages could become a powerhouse for local business owners and users. Google is pulling so much data from so many different place and, provided that the data is accurate, Place Pages could become real go-to pages for numerous facts about all kinds of places. If you run a local business, definitely stay tuned into this story. I think it’s going to develop into a big one.