Recently, I stumbled upon a change in Google Places, when looking for an ATM within the mall. Below is a screenshot of the Places page.
The strange piece of content here is the snippet from Wikipedia. “All text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License – Wikipedia.”
Alone this info would not be worthy of investigation, but earlier in the day I saw some snippets from insiderpages.com, Superpages.com, and yahoo.com.
Above is a snapshot of a similar search that I reproduced with different snippets. I’ve done several of these searches in different categories and it seems like these snippets are appearing where there is a robust inventory of review content, i.e. car dealers, restaurants, etc.
A few months ago Google removed third party reviews from Google Places. The snippets aren’t on the Place Page, from what I’ve seen they only appear when someone searches from Google Maps. We will see if this develops to impact the local review landscape or if it fizzles out to nothing. Either way it is interesting to see some review content aggregation back in Google Places; we certainly are seeing content aggregation’s resurgence in other areas of Google Places/Maps.
Stay tuned for my next post, where I will elaborate on the new practices in business listing aggregation.
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Phil Britton, Product Manager- Location Based Search