Google Maps App Pushing Ratings with Reviews Optional – July 2016

Overlooking the Atlantic is a great little restaurant called Daddy Mac’s.  If you are ever on Topsail Island, NC, go there for lunch. The wait times at dinner are crazy but at lunch you can slip right in. I personally grab an IPA and a soft shell crab sandwich but the fish tacos are always a hit and made with the fish of the day.

That is what a typical short review looks like by me… But more on that later…

A new notification…

On July 21, 2016, I got off of a call and looked at my phone and there was a notification from Google Maps that I had not seen before. Earlier in the day I had used Maps for directions to this business. Apparently, Google knew, and may have known how much time I spent there, too…

New notification from Google Maps, asking for a rating.

New notification from Google Maps, asking for a rating.

I checked out the notification and it was Google asking me for a review of Daddy Mac’s. But, something was interesting, the Maps app was simply asking for a star rating.

Google Maps asking for a star rating only.

Google Maps asking for a star rating only.

Once I clicked the star rating I was given an option to leave an actual review. I chose not to, just to see what would happen.

Maps then asked, on the next screen, if I’d like to write a review or not. I said no (again, to see what would happen).

Screenshot_20160721-135540

How did this affect the business’s ratings?

Later on desktop I took a look. I scrolled to be bottom of over 100 reviews to see myself and a few others who left a rating. Judging by the number of recent reviews we can see that this is definitely working out in Google’s favor:

Recent ratings with no review.

Recent ratings with no review.

This is a great move by Google. The reviews are nice but at least they are getting ratings. Google has really struggled in this area. In many cases people are 4 – 10X more likely to use Yelp to leave a review instead of on Google, especially in the restaurant business.

Could Google turn things around?

And, Thank God, this does not require Google Plus.

What this means for business owners

If someone uses Google Maps to visit you, they are going to be prompted for a rating. Even if they found you via Yelp, then used Maps to drive to you, they will be prompted to rate you.

If you have a business people drive to and need directions for, such as a restaurant, expect to be rated!

From the image above it appears that Google is about to receive a LOT more ratings. I was wondering when and how they would take control of their ratings system.

  • Update July 22, 2016: Google officially announced this on their blog yesterday.
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