Google Maps Without Third Party Reviews

Jul 22, 2011 • 8:54 am | comments (6) by twitter Google+ | Filed Under Google Maps
 

It seems like Yelp won or did they? Google wanted to source third party reviews because their own review database was limited. Yelp wanted to keep getting traffic from Google but not have Google simply source their reviews on their site.

Google updated the place pages and they now have the new overall design, plus remove the third party reviews, except for a small link.

Here is a picture of Airmont Eats place page. I cropped it a bit, but you can see how Google is strongly encouraging users to write reviews, then shows only their reviews at the top with a small link to third party web site reviews from Yelp and others.

Google Places Design

Google said:

Based on careful thought about the future direction of Place pages, and feedback we've heard over the past few months, review snippets from other web sources have now been removed from Place pages. Rating and review counts reflect only those that've been written by fellow Google users, and as part of our continued commitment to helping you find what you want on the web, we're continuing to provide links to other review sites so you can get a comprehensive view of locations across the globe.

Of course, those businesses that feel like they "lost" most of their reviews are not happy. We have threads at Google Places Help and Google Maps Help. One business owner said:

I'm really worried about all the small businesses I work with that just lost 2/3 of their review count because of the 3rd party reviews being gone from the count (and they're also not really displayed unless you dig down). I'm guessing you guys already thought this through but I've already seen tons of posts of business owners that seem very upset.

I guess time will tell, but I have a feeling those reviews are never coming back, at least not directly on Google Maps.

Forum discussion at Google Places Help and Google Maps Help.

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Comments:

Black Seo Guy

07/22/2011 01:35 pm

This is just another way the show that you don't control anything on Google..those guys do. But we just have to live with it. "Black Seo Guy "Signing Off"

Avraham Solomon

07/22/2011 02:44 pm

Just come to show you that you can't rely one just one aspect of  PR or SEO to get your companies message out there. Honestly if your company is good there is nothing stopping you from getting your customers to actively review on Google. People are just lazy or don't care enough.  http//www.livejewishmusic.com

Matt Chantry

07/22/2011 04:25 pm

Our team here at Screen Pilot broke this news yesterday... http://www.screenpilot.com/blog/2011/07/google-kills-95-of-your-hotel-reviews-what-does-it-mean-for-seo/ Anyone got any ideas on pushing consumers to write reviews through google rather than other sources now?

Em Zee

07/23/2011 03:54 pm

Other than Google really want Google to play fair in review places game. So, Google is doing their parts by dismissing the external reviews. So, is Google evil or no evil doing?

Sean

07/25/2011 01:35 pm

Google is always evil..

Ara

08/08/2011 10:01 pm

It's a good thing they are not showing/counting ratings from other sites such as Yelp. If I see reviews on Google, I want to know that they were from Google users, not Yelp or Insiderpages , etc. This gives Google reviews more weight in my opinion.

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