In the Google tradition of continually adapting their products toward the best interest of its users, Google Places officially announced this week the introduction of user contributed updates for Google Place pages.
Customers of local businesses will be given the opportunity to provide up-to-date information on business listings that are potentially outdated or incorrect. In addition, Google Places will also source and identify content from third party sites online that are more recent and correlate with each other. This provides many benefits, not only to users, but to busy business owners who may not always have the time to manage their Place pages.
This new system leverages the willingness and loyalty of customers to help their local businesses. User updates may include sharing new trading hours, specials and changing outdated addresses and phone numbers. Updates will automatically be sent to the business e-mail address for the Google Places account, and are reversible by the verified owner should there be any incorrect submissions. There will also be the option to opt out of this feature for owners who would prefer to retain control and active management of their information.
In the meantime, updates by verified business owners are already accessible in the Google Places dashboard. To share an update, simply click on the name of your business and enter a short message. Good ideas include sharing discounts, sales or special offers, but you can always choose to get more creative with it!