The new Google Maps combines data from different resources – social media and the concept of hyper-personalization generating detail-rich maps.
So far a map was just a map, and everyone got the same results for Berlin, whether searching for the world famous Brandenburg Gate or Cafe Einstein around the corner.
The new Google Maps is always adapting to the task the user would like to perform in this very moment. The result is a personalized map specifically based on the user data – like a friend drawing a map to his/her favorite spot, with only the roads and landmarks needed to get there. The new Google Maps instantly adjusts to highlight information that matters most based on the search and user profile.
The specific results get even more precise the more personalized data is provided by the user. For example setting Home and Work locations, setting stars for favorite places or writing reviews, will result in even more useful maps with recommendations for similar places.
So what are the main new features of the new Google Maps:
1. Full-screen and fully interactive
2. The map is tailored to you and gets better with use – every click draws a new map highlighting the information that matters most
3. Search results appearing labeled right on the map ease the process to find the best local places with brief descriptions and icons that highlight business categories and other useful information such as business hours, and ratings and reviews, so you can quickly decide where to eat, drink and play.
4. The new carousel gathers all Google Maps imagery in one spot
Now, how can hotels, restaurants and further hospitality sites influence the results and recommendations shown on the new Google Maps to attract new customers uncovering the best local gems?
By providing precise, inviting and accessible data for your location. Key takeaways:
- List the location on Google Maps as part of the right category
- Provide inviting descriptions of the site including, e.g. up-to-date info cards with useful data such as opening hours
- Allocate good quality visual information for the new Google Maps carousel – this will be interacting with Google Street View and for users with WebGL-enabled browsers as well with Google Earth – what can be influenced though is the display of images provided by the site itself and user-submitted photos
- Hopefully have or try to generate positive ratings and reviews available on Google+ by followers and friends.
If not done yet, now is the right time to check and update your business data on Google Maps.
A nice video provided by Google visualizing the newest features is available on Youtube.
The new Google Maps is not available yet for public usage, but invitations can be requested under this page.