Google Related: Business Friend or Foe?
Today Google unveiled its new extension for Chrome called Google Related. The option is also available as a new feature for Google Toolbar for Internet Explorer.
This is a pretty big deal for those SMB’s that are paying attention these days. Watch the Google provided video here.
While the additional information is striking for the end user it can be a web site owner’s worst nightmare. Why? Well, Google’s Related Places from their Place Page data is put front and center for your visitor to see. Now we are seeing what Google had planned for some of the information they recently stripped from their place pages.
Now, more than ever a businesses website better keep a visitor’s attention. Right now, not all sites are seeing the extension pop up but in the local space it looks like it is the vast majority of sites are seeing the bar with this additional information. Even Wikipedia pages get the “related treatment”.
Now the competition isn’t just in the SERP’s but it can come up on you’re your own website! I liken it to being in a store that is running ads for their competitors on big screens while you try to shop at the store. Not ideal for a businesses in most cases.
Also, if you have a dicey history with reviews those little buggers can show up on your site in a manner of speaking. Once again, if this doesn’t make an SMB get on the ball maybe nothing will.
It’s important to remember that this information will not be ubiquitous because not everyone will be using these tools. For those that do, and let’s face it most searchers who are tech savvy are influencers, it provides a whole new experience and a way to always be comparison shopping.
Not sure how I feel about this one yet. For the end user it could be like hitting the information jackpot while for a business it could be like a punch in the gut. Of course, there are all stops in between as well.
What’s your take?