Considering today’s announcement that Google is doing away with Google Places and replacing it with new feature that combines its Google Plus social site and renowned restaurant reviewers Zagat. For those of you who don’t remember, Google purchased Zagat in September 2011, check out our article on elocalrocks.com about the acquisition.
For those of you who weren’t old enough to carry a little Zagat’s book when you went on vacation or to select a restaurant (yes, Virginia there was a time before Yelp), Zagat was formed in 1979 by a couple in New York who felt that diners and travelers needed a way to review restaurants and hotels prior to actually going to them. The little purple book was a main stay for people of my generation and the first of its kind to offer reviews by actual customers in order to help others make decisions.
That all being said, it seems that Google is finally going to put Zagat to good use and to make yet another push at taking the Social Networking dominance from Facebook (good luck there). So really despite all of the shock and dismay being expressed on line about the demise of Google Places, it really should have been read in the proverbial tea leafs.
With the announcement, it seems timely that not only do I add MyLocally to Google Plus, but that we let our readers know that it is definitely time to embrace Google Plus as a business network. We will keep you posted on any future developments or the impact this change will have on small businesses and Local Search, but in the mean time, we are advising that advising that you add a business account to Google Plus and am including a link on how to do so from the Social Examiner.