Monthly Archives: September 2017

Google Shines a Beacon on Local Business

Google has started a pilot program that involves sending electronic beacons to businesses with physical (aka, “brick and mortar”) locations to make their venues more visible to customers with mobile devices. 

What’s a Beacon you ask?

Beacons are small electronic transmitters that send one-way signals that are read by customers’ phones. This location information can be used to access a broad range of services on mobile devices.

Benefits

Because beacons help mobile devices determine a user’s location more accurately, they can be used to find your location more quickly. A user’s smartphone that has a more accurate placement of their location unlocks a whole set of new features and sets up your business to use location-related features in Google, such as:

  • Helps your business show up on personal maps or saved places, where users have opted in to Location History.
  • Gathers photos, reviews, and other user-generated content for your business from people who have visited.
  • Provides features like Popular times and typical visit duration to help customers plan their visit to your business.
  • Helps provide Location Insights about how customers engage with your store.
  • More features are being planned and will be accessible as they become available.

How it works

Your beacon transmits your venue’s unique one-way code. When someone visits you with location services turned on, their phone uses the beacon signal and knows that it’s visiting you. The beacon itself does not collect or store any information. It only provides a helpful signal to your customers’ phones.

People who visit your venue can then contribute reviews, star ratings, and photos as well as answer questions about your venue. Once enough of your visitors’ phones have detected visits to your store, Google can activate features such as Popular times to show up on your venue’s Place Page.

The data shown in these products is based on anonymous, aggregated visit statistics. You can’t use it to tie a specific visit back to a specific individual. Google uses industry best practices to ensure the privacy of individual users.

Sound like an interesting way to engage your customers?

Give Mike Parsons a call at 706-826-1506 ext.122 and let us help you make it happen.