BubBye Zagat Restaurant Reviews:Hello Stars!
Okay, you may not have heard of the Zagat review system for restaurants in the US (learn more here) and the fact that this firm was bought by Google back in the fall of 2011 to be used it was stated “to aid it’s local search rankings” and that seemed to hold some promise for the veracity of same.
What I thought back then (blog link here) was that as Zagat had some real authority in the restaurant review world, that when Google bought same, it could only work well for those rankings and at the same time spin away from Yelp et al and the plethora of phony reviews.
At least that’s how it looked to me…at the time – but as I’ve learned….things change muchly in the Canadian SEO world, eh!
And Zagat is toast! At least that’s the announcement made just a day ago by Google…and heres’ how I think this will impact local search…but first, here’s what you used to see in Google Maps…
As you will note I’ve circled the Zagat review rankings on the left hand side that refer to the Chicago Style Pizza Shack….a numerical ranking of same. And here’s what the new Maps layout will look like (at least as far as I can determine on google.ca) -
Note, the numerical Zagat rankings are gone and it includes red stars both numerically and graphically too….here’s a bigger look at what Mike Blumenthal showed yesterday which is where I got this news…. -
Well, thinking on this change is somewhat interesting…in that Google spent I think something like $150 million on Zagat…and it’s toast.
Hmm….so….is the star review any better? I don’t honestly know….and I think that somehow those Zagat scores are “still” used in the Google Maps algo to rank the restaurants….as in why would anyone waste more than 30 years of a great review system…
But you? What do you think on same….do a quick Maps search for restaurants in your own city and see what you get….and learn more about this big change…..Google