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Google Reviews Front and Center in Overhaul of Place Pages

The relationship between Google and review sites like Yelp and TripAdvisor has been rocky at best over the past year. The appearance of reviews on Google’s Places Pages has been the biggest point of contention as Google and its review partners argue over the best way to present reviews and serve the user.

A mere three weeks after releasing their social media platform, Google +, the company has announced some major changes to the Google Maps and Google Places platform, with promises for more changes in the near future.

One glaring difference on the new Places page is the absence of review snippets from both Yelp and TripAdvisor. Instead, the page now lists Google reviews, accompanied by two bright red buttons where users can sign in and leave their own reviews.

New Google Places Impact on your Practice

While the importance of online reviews is well-documented, Google has just separated themselves from the crowd and taken center stage on the local SEO stage. As Google + becomes more popular, and the +1 button is used more often, reviews are likely to have a much bigger impact on local SEO.

However, the reviews take the +1 or Like button concept a step further, and provide even deeper insight into your practice. As patients continue to turn to the internet to conduct research before contacting an aesthetic healthcare practice, the social community that is likely to spring up around Google +, personalized search, and the Google reviews will have a significant impact on your practice’s online performance.

2 Ways to Get the Most Out of Google Reviews

As the search experience in general, and local search results in particular, become increasingly personalized, proactive online reputation management will play a significant role in the performance of your website. To be sure you squeeze everything out of your practice’s online existence, first focus on the quality of your Google Profile, and then be sure to cultivate the potential reviews from happy patients.

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