Google Local Business System Changes will Help Dealers


By Peyton Hoffman

Each time Google makes a change, whether it is Google+ Local, Google Search, a 5 star rat­ing or a 30 point scale, deal­er­ships hold their breath.  Con­sumers rely on search to give them quick, rel­e­vant infor­ma­tion and with these new changes.  This is exactly what the new Google local busi­ness sys­tem rat­ing is deliv­er­ing.  And the new changes are the best to date!

Google has made a remark­able change to Google Maps. This change has not yet been released to the gen­eral pub­lic, but will be rolled out on Google Maps for Mobile, Google search results and Google+ Local in upcom­ing months.

Old vs. New
The most promi­nent change in this ver­sion of Google Maps is how busi­ness results are now dis­played dur­ing a local search.  Most of us are famil­iar with the cur­rent Google Maps inter­face with its two-column design.  Cur­rently, Google Maps places the search results and direc­tions on the left and the map on the right.  This will soon be no longer the case.  The new Google Maps inter­face breaks the map out of the box and, instead, labels results directly on the map. This makes it much eas­ier to see mul­ti­ple results at once. Also, the more rel­e­vant results have a larger Google Map icon and the busi­ness name listed. The days of asso­ci­at­ing a Pin with the busi­ness listed on the left col­umn search results are gone.

Float­ing search bar
The Google Maps search bar now sits at the top of the map, rather than being sep­a­rated out. Once a spe­cific loca­tion is decided upon, Maps dis­plays addi­tional detail beneath the search bar with float­ing “infor­ma­tion cards”.  This pro­vides nav­i­ga­tion short­cuts to that loca­tion, along with the abil­ity to save it for later or exam­ine the busi­ness’ star rat­ing and num­ber of reviews.  Select­ing the reviews sec­tion within the infor­ma­tion card takes con­sumers directly to that busi­ness’ Google+ Local page.

5 Star rat­ing sys­tem
When the change goes into effect within Google Maps, con­sumers will rate busi­nesses on a review scale of one to five stars.  This new rat­ing sys­tem main­tains the pre­ci­sion of the for­mer 30 point scale while improv­ing the read­abil­ity and acces­si­bil­ity of the busi­ness listings.

A dealership’s over­all rat­ing is cal­cu­lated from both the old and new review sys­tems to con­fig­ure a 5 star rat­ing.  Sub cat­e­gories such as “ser­vice”, “qual­ity”, or “appeal” also con­tribute to the over­all rat­ing.  Accord­ing to Google, scores will be more reli­able for those deal­er­ships with only a few rat­ings.  With the Zagat rat­ing, at least 10 reviews were needed to show the 30-point scale for any busi­ness.  With the new 5 star rat­ing, only 5 reviews are nec­es­sary to com­pile an actual star rating.

With this new change comes sim­plic­ity.  Search for deal­er­ship.  Find deal­er­ship list­ing. Click deal­er­ship to receive info card and read reviews.  It truly is a glo­ri­ous site!

Pey­ton Hoff­man is in Media and Indus­try Rela­tions with Domin­ion Dealer Solu­tions. Jes Cote, Senior Rep­u­ta­tion Spe­cial­ist, Domin­ion Dealer Solu­tions, wrote the orig­i­nal arti­cle which can be viewed here.