What is Google Related?
Google Related is a new browsing feature from Google that offers options on other web pages, articles, local businesses images and videos related to the page you are currently on.
Currently available on Internet Explorer 7.0 and Google Chrome, the Google Related Toolbar feature appears as a separate bar at the bottom of your screen presenting a number of additional options relevant to the website you are currently on.
For example, if you are looking make a search for ‘luxury accommodation Gold Coast’, Google Related will provide further details relating to the website you are on – quite convenient for consumers.
The Google Related tool is another opportunity for Google users to engage with the +1 button as the various elements of the Google Related bar can be +1’d.
Categories that are likely to appear in the Google Related toolbar include videos & images, news articles, maps to the location and reviews about the location. These additional features will only appear from the toolbar when you hover the cursor over the relevant category – if you click on it, it will then open a separate window taking you directly to that content.
From a users perspective, Google Related is a definite plus as it arms consumers with more information which should assist them in making a more confident purchasing decision. It also places an onus on business owners to ensure the standards they deliver are maintained consistently as bad reviews appearing in the Related toolbar at the foot of the window could easily sway consumers away.
What does Google Related mean for Australian business?
The Google Related feature is just further evidence of a need for a comprehensive web presence. A website is no longer enough as a means of promoting your business online – you need to think in terms of maximising the visibility of your business through all available means.
Ensuring your business is listed on Google Places and in relevant local and industry directories as well as making regular contributions to relevant blogs is a good way of supporting your website, which remains the most important online promotional tool available to you.
It also reinforces the need to seek (and even reward!) positive reviews from customers. For most businesses, negative reviews are likely to occur every now and then and when you have a disgruntled customer, they are more likely to leave a negative review. Negative reviews can be more influential if not balanced by positive reviews and feedback, which don’t tend to happen as frequently simply because satisfied customers don’t feel the need to shout it from the roof tops.
In summary, encourage more reviews and things like Google Related and Google Places Reviews will be your friend. Don’t encourage reviews and Google Related may needlessly become a serious headache.