So today I was investigating the reasons why some components of MapPI were returning results and the average rating wasnt coming back.
As MapPI requires Internet Explorer as its backbone in order to gather its results it relies on the browser staying as passive as possible.
However, recent changes at Google has seen the addition of Zagat in the Google Places serps. Not a bad thing considering Zagat brings in reputable reviews from registered customers and Google seems to like that. I mean, why reinvent the wheel eh? Great news for Zagat and restaurant owners alike.
Some users will spot that it doesn’t ahve to be restaurants that are bringing back this “out of 30″ score – Google are doing it for other businesses too:
Now you may be wondering why can’t you see any of these reviews. Well, the answer is simple. It’s probably because you’re not using Internet Explorer.
Here’s a dual screenshot of the same search done on Firefox and Internet Explorer 9.
So, when you’re explaining “the score” to your clients, be sure to take into account that they may or may not be using the same browser as you.
*I haven’t tested this on Chrome
Update: 21st June 2012
It seems now that the same results now appear for all the browsers.
This is something I’ve long hypothesised about and believed it was possible to turn a local result where 2 box appears and make it into a three box over time.
I have been long planning this little project and have helped a client out in the process.
To start with I created a new Google Places listing for my client. then I researched what keywords and locations produce 2 box results. In all fairness though this was pretty easy for me to do using my MapPI tool (soon to be released – contact me for a preview).
So the day I created the listing I also created a short Camtasia video where I would record the progress of the listing as it would appear on Google for the chosen search term.
I would then check the Google results each day to see if the new listing appears and whether the two box turned into a three box.
Well, the results are in. I did in fact turn a 2 box listing into a 3 box listing and it took a little over 2 weeks to do.
The beauty is the listing is also appearing for a plethora of other search phrases (as predicted), thus helping boost website visits.
Below is the video – please note there is no sound with it.
Also, this was done on Google.ie Maximize the video to see the whole picture