It’s the “Year of Mobile” v. 2010 remember? Whether it is or isn’t officially is irrelevant. What is important is just how much mobile is continuing to influence the lives of many Internet users. While not as ubiquitous as many in the industry would like us to believe, it is still a very strong component of the online world and one that has seemingly limitless upside for years to come.
Evidence of just how influential the mobile world is comes from Google who announced that they have hit the 100 million users per month using Google Maps in some form. No matter who you are, that is a big number. From the Google Mobile Blog
Almost five years ago, we launched Google Maps for mobile to help you get where you needed to go from your phone instead of a paper map. Today, more than 100 million people a month are now using Google Maps for mobile to get from point A to point B, find nearby places, and more.
Below is an infographic (notice the use of the hottest Internet marketing buzzword) that shows the evolution of Google Maps for mobile until this point.
What is happening today with this Google service is even more important as the usage continues to rise. The trouble is that the vast majority of the businesses that could benefit from this service don’t even have a clue that it exists let alone how important it could be to promoting their business.
Lately, we’ve been especially focused on helping you find the right place at the right time. With recent additions such as Place Pages, you can now pick a nearby place by browsing information such as opening hours and review snippets for the places around you. It’s easier than ever to find those places with Search by voice or the new Places icon on Android. With this latest Android version, we’re happy to see that you’re now searching for places almost three times as often, doubling how many Place Pages are seen a day.
Place Pages are going to be more and more important to the local player and to the BtoB space as well because they will are a supplemental source of data that may actually be used before a web site or even, gulp, instead of one, by people looking for whatever it is they need.
I believe though that unless Google becomes a better marketer themselves this service will not be fully utilized in the way it could be. Google unfortunately just expects people to know this stuff then even puts the following at the end of this post
If you’re a business owner, help millions of people find you by claiming your free Place Page available in Google Maps and our most used mobile “app” — Google Search. Get started at places.google.com/businesses.
It’s a nice touch but the actual numbers of business owners reading any Google blog are likely to be pretty low. Most readers of Google’s blogs are the industry / tech geek type that can get the word out for sure, if that was their job. In most cases it’s not the business owner reading this so these ‘notifications’ are nice but they are not getting the word out……at all.
Even despite that, a lot of people are using Google Maps though, right? Imagine what it would be like if those people using it had even better information to retrieve because the people they were trying to find were there (and in control of their information) too.
One can dream, can’t one?