Linda Buquet

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So excited to finally be able to announce the launch of the new Google Places Dashboard. YAY!

This new All-in-One Google Local Listing Management Dashboard offers SOOOOO many significant advantages
and yes the old dashboard is really going away.

Although, please be aware this is a HUGE UPDATE, that will gradually be rolling out nationally - then internationally. It's rolling out as we speak and could take days, possibly weeks to reach everyone and this is just phase one.

I believe it's open to NEW signups now and will roll out gradually from there.
More changes and improvement are still coming after this, and of course the product will continue to expand and evolve.

A pic is worth 1,000 words so without further ado
let me show you the new integrated dashboard.


DashOverview.png

Above is the demo listing Google created for Linda's Snow Shop. ;) Here is the live page with the categories and description I just added yesterday.

You see the Google Places data editing section, (Yes it's still called Places on the business owner side) there is also one button Google+ Page set-up AND management widget, a Google Adwords Express widget and Google Offers widget, all together in the same interface. How hot is that?!!!

PLUS all the data flows between and is consistent between all the different apps. Additionally, if you do something wrong OR if an edit will be delayed because it needs to be approved, it will tell you that too!
This is just such a major improvement I can't hardly type, I'm so excited.

PLACE PAGE DATA EDIT SCREEN

DataEdits.png

Short on time hope the notes on screenshot are sufficient.


EDITING CATEGORIES

Catedits.png

I tried to add the custom categories "snowman creation service" and "snowblowers full of hot air"
to Linda's Snow Shop as custom cats. Here's what happened:

NO MORE CUSTOM CATEGORIES

CatsNoCustom.png

Yes there is, 1 Button set up for Google+ Business page right in your new dashboard. Super hot!
(This is why I kept telling you Google has been saying to wait!)


Google+ Widget

G+widget.png

Then when I click "Visit Your Google+ Page" here is the G+ Business page management screen.


Google+ Management Screen

G+Interface.png

NOTE: You don't have to merge/verify your G+ Business page yet if you don't want to. If you don't need social or want to wait for things to improve you can simply stay with the Place page/G+ Local page.

A couple other points. Edits SHOULD go live a little faster for most things as they've been working on the data pipeline. However I think images are still delayed, but they are working on it. And again this will take awhile to roll out and more exciting changes are in the wind...

There is a ton more info that I don't have time to type up. I tried to show the most important stuff in the screenshots and links below will answer many of your questions.

HELP DOCS with MORE INFO

IMPORTANT FAQ More details about the improved look and feel of Google Places for Business

What’s happening to Google Places for Business?

Insights for your business (New analytics)

Status of edits in your listing editor Explains edits that could be pending review. It NOTIFIES YOU NOW!

Service area businesses in Google Places for Business This is all changed and MUCH better!

Upgrading your business listing to a local Google+ Page ONE BUTTON UPGRADE TO G+ WIDGET

Sorry, have a family medical emergency and am madly trying to make travel arrangements and trying to wrap up work and get out of town. So I'm not going to be around much to answer Qs. Plus when I'm gone Internet access may be tough, as I'll be in a rural area on Lake Michigan without a good signal.

So this may not be as long and detailed as I'd like. Hopefully the screenshots from my demo account will tell most of the story, along with the links to the official announcement and help docs from Google.

But I think Joel and Jade may peek in to answer Qs as they come up. And Joy can fill in Colan so he'll have a lot of the answers as well. Plus Keenan was in our meeting and saw demo and he's a member here too. Maybe Mike will even stop by. So you guys should be covered, even once I have to rush off. Plus I'm sure Mike has more detailed info and will be answering Qs over at his blog as well.

LOCAL SEARCH PROS CONFERENCE CALL

I'm going to TRY to have a "State of the Union" call of sorts that will be open to all of the consultants that have taken my Advanced Google+ Local training. I'm still madly trying to figure out my travel schedule, but if I don't have to leave til next week, I'll try to do the call Thurs or Friday. Will announce it in the Private Pro Forum if I can pull this call off. (No promises, just best of intentions.)

THANK YOU to the GOOGLE TEAM FOR ALL YOUR HARD WORK ON THIS UPDATE!

What do you guys think?
Are you as excited as I am?


UPDATE: 4/3 Split off all the wonderful supportive comments about my family situation plus will post updates about my travel plans/availability here: Linda Limited Availability Until April 19th

DashOverview.png


DataEdits.png


Catedits.png


CatsNoCustom.png


G+widget.png


G+Interface.png
 
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Thanks so much for the information! I have read your post as well as Mike's and it looks like Google may have turned the corner here.

I just listed a new business yesterday (wish i had waited a day). I am curious to see how this pans out for my new business owner once she is verified.

I will be watching this closely.

My prayers to you and your father.

Jeff
 

m_j_gregory

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What great news, Linda! Thanks for the very thorough, well-written post regarding this! It's great to see some movement on this front!

Thanks again,
Matt
 
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This is so, so huge. My head is spinning. Linda, you are an angel to be writing about all of this with so many family worries on your mind. Going to read Mike's posts right now.

I left for lunch today and when I came back, the whole world had changed. :D
 

Chase Billow

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Why spend all that time and effort on a Places dashboard where there are also G+ Local pages? So Plus Loca and Places can be merged, or not. Seems to prolong the confusion and the inevitable G+ takeover.
 

Jim Froling

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First, BIG THANKS for such in depth reporting on this important and fundamentally altering change in what affects many of us. I migrated from "Oh, sh...." earlier this evening to "Oh, Wow". I keep telling myself (and clients): "Change is good. Embrace it. Own it". Looks like we've got some embracing and ownership ahead of us. All good!

Second, Congrats for your TC designation on Google's Meet our Top Contributors - Business Help
Though your ranking is #2 below Mike's, I still love you more :eek:

Lastly, at http://support.google.com/business/answer "Upgrading Your Business Listing to Google Plus", it states: "You should be managing no other pages in your Google+ account. If you have other pages which you wish to continue managing, you should hang tight until the Google+ upgrade is available to you." Hang tight? Days? Weeks? Months?

Alternatives? Suggestions?

Still peeling the onion layers so will probably be back soon with more questions, and perhaps fresh observations. Till then, "Cover me, I'm go'in in!".
 

Keenan Glass

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Great Job Linda! You wonder how Mike finds the time, I wonder the same about you.

Chase - the new Places Dashboard and the local +Page interface are now going through the same pipeline. Changes in one will be reflected in the other. Going forward, local business owners will be managing their listings in the Places Dashboard. A local G+ page will just be another feature available through the Dashboard. Not so much merged, but more like integrated.

BTW, Google is finally giving the business owners Super Trust status over the data in their listing.
 

Eric Rohrback

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So if this is being managed on the local side (Google Places for business dashboard), then what would you tell people who merged their local/social pages and are managing it through the social side? Do they delete the page and start over on the local side?
 

freerunr

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BTW, Google is finally giving the business owners Super Trust status over the data in their listing.

How immensely happy that makes me, and will make my clients!

@Linda (or whoever can cover for her), I'm curious to know.... in the chart provided by Joel in the forum post, he pointed out that business listings verified through the new Places dashboard will not have a check mark, and yet the listing for Linda's Snow Shop does have one. Am I missing something here?

Ps, hope all is well with your family.
 

Marie Ysais

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Great information and YES I am as excited as you ARE!! This is BIG and I can't wait to try it all out!
Thank you for always keeping us UP to DATE! My head is actually spinning with all of the new information and ......
possibilities!
 

Linda Buquet

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Second, Congrats for your TC designation on Google's Meet our Top Contributors - Business Help
Though your ranking is #2 below Mike's, I still love you more :eek:

Awww Jim, I love you too!

But I've been #2 on that page since I became a TC a couple years ago. Mike will always be #1! :)

Great Job Linda! You wonder how Mike finds the time, I wonder the same about you.

Chase - the new Places Dashboard and the local +Page interface are now going through the same pipeline. Changes in one will be reflected in the other. Going forward, local business owners will be managing their listings in the Places Dashboard. A local G+ page will just be another feature available through the Dashboard. Not so much merged, but more like integrated.

BTW, Google is finally giving the business owners Super Trust status over the data in their listing.

Thanks Keenan good points all. The increased trust in the owner dashboard data is super important so I'm glad you brought it up.

So if this is being managed on the local side (Google Places for business dashboard), then what would you tell people who merged their local/social pages and are managing it through the social side? Do they delete the page and start over on the local side?

NO I don't think you'll have to delete the page and start over.

Joel said: "I’m currently using Google+ to manage a local Google+ page? Continue to use Google+ to manage the page. We do not recommend making any additional accounts or pages for pages that already exist."

AND BTW that's another reason we've been saying DON'T merge yet. Because sometimes when something is half baked and you jump in too fast, then the final product comes out and it's different - then it can get tricky to go backwards and make it all work.

BUT there are enough businesses that have already merges, that I'm sure Google has thought of this scenario. Plus I would think you'd do just fine continuing to manage as is. Worst case you just may not have the analytics. OR maybe there will be a way to connect a dashboard to your listing? Not sure.

@Linda (or whoever can cover for her), I'm curious to know.... in the chart provided by Joel in the forum post, he pointed out that business listings verified through the new Places dashboard will not have a check mark, and yet the listing for Linda's Snow Shop does have one. Am I missing something here?

Good catch on the check mark eagle eye! :p Not sure what happened but Google must have verified the + page automagically for me. Because when they 1st gave me the test account I didn't think it was merged. Played around, added some cats. Went back in later, noticed the check mark and went back to dash and it said it was merged. I obviously could not have done it that fast and could not have gotten the postcard at my fake address in Nevada! ;) I'm thinking possibly when they gave me the account it was already merged and I just didn't realize it or something.
 
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Quick question for you Linda. Maybe my ADHD has kicked in but I didn't notice if there was anything said about verification's on the listings. Will Google still require 1 verification for the places listing and another for the Google+ local page?
 

Linda Buquet

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Sorry I have heard anything about verification process changing yet.
 

Keenan Glass

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Eric - as far as the Edit Details management, once the Places Dashboard is upgraded, it won't matter which interface they use. They are two doors that lead to the same place.
 

Laura B

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Linda, as an SAB, do I need to merge my places listing with G+ or do I wait for G to do it automatically? I remember months ago when I jumped the gun and created the G+ listing and went thru the verify process and then disappeared from the 7 pack. Just want to make sure that doesn't happen again. Thanks!
 
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