Google adds features to local listings; competes with local online business directories.
Google is enhancing its local business listing features and will now compete head on with local business directories such as yellow pages, and to some extent geo domains.
With its new Local Business Center, business owners can add a listing for their business or claim an existing auto-generated listing on Google. They can then add videos, photos, and even online coupons.
But the real power of the local listings is that Google now offers analytics to help customers understand where their business is coming from. Google Local Business Center lets business owners see:
Impressions: The number of times the business listing appeared as a result on a Google.com search or Google Maps search in a given period.
Actions: The number of times people interacted with the listing; for example, the number of times they clicked through to the business’ website or requested driving directions to the business.
Top search queries: Which search queries led customers to the business listing
Zip codes where driving directions come from: Which zip codes customers are coming from when they request directions to your location.
The service is free.