Google Places Adds Client Photo Uploads: Smart Social Play?

The Google Maps blog announced that users will be able to upload photos taken of their Places listings. While no doubt it will require policing by Google, the move makes the review process a little more social.

"The "Photos" section of the Place page now includes an "Upload a photo" link. This new link enables you to select an original photo on your computer and easily add it to the group of photos in the gallery."

It is a smart loyalty play. People who upload pictures for a business are much more likely to become a regular and a recommender - showing others the pic they upload to a place's site is bound to happen and maybe the angle Google is working.

"The most useful photos are descriptive ones that help others experience or envision a place before they visit it in person. It might be a close-up of a popular dish, a wide shot of a business interior, or a picture of the outside of the building," Google instructed.

There is no mention of the businesses themselves being able to edit and choose - this could become a contention in the future. People taking unflattering pictures or uploading false shots etc.

About the author

Frank Watson has been involved with the Web since it started. For the past five years, he headed SEM for FXCM -- at one time one of the top 25 spenders with AdWords. He has worked with most of the major analytics companies and pioneered the ability to tie online marketing with offline conversion.

He has now started his own marketing agency, Kangamurra Media. This new venture will keep him busy when he is not editing the Search Engine Watch forums, blogging at a number of authoritative sites, and developing some interesting online community sites.

He was one of the first 100 AdWords Professionals, a Yahoo and Overture Ambassador, and a member or mod of many of the industry forums. He is also on the Click Quality Council and has worked hard to diminish click fraud.