Last week Google announced their integration with Zagat in releasing of their newest feature, Google + Local and we’d like to take a moment to answer some of the common questions that are clients are asking about the changes and what it means for their business listing and reviews.
In general, listings are being moved from Google Places to Google + Local and the rating/review scale has been changed from a 5 star rating to Zagat’s 30 point rating system. No more 5-star rating system, where a number of businesses found themselves in the 3.5 star area, Google thinks the more detailed, robust Zagat rating system will be helpful for users. According to Avni Shah, Director of Product Management for Google, “It’s integrated into Search, Maps, and mobile and available as a new tab in Google+ – creating one simple experience across Google.”
More info on the new grading scale here: https://support.google.com/local/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=1723748&p=zagat_score.
How does this all affect business listings with reviews?
- Your Listing → The good news is that this change hasn’t affected your Google places listing in any way just yet. It just has a “new look” and the reviewers will be having a different experience when posting.
- Your Reviews → For review postings and questionnaires we will be following grading scale noted below when posting the reviews. Also note that all reviewers must have a Google + account in order to post a reviews for your business.
- Your Rating → Your rating also, as mentioned above may now be different because of the new scale.
We’re reviewing this Google change and will be paying close attention to revisions that may come out in the weeks and months ahead.