Google Places Best Ever Ratings: Do They Matter?

Google Places

Have you heard of the “Best Ever” medal for businesses on Google Places? Surely you must have, since it was introduced almost 8 months ago. 😉

It’s a great concept, really. In case you didn’t know, you have 10 “Best Ever” medals to award to your most beloved places, from your favorite coffee shop to your cable company. You may be able to go around handing out 5 star reviews to hundreds of businesses, but not so with medals. However, if you find a new place you love even more than the last, don’t worry—you can remove and reassign your medals. If your business receives—and keeps—a “Best Ever” medal, consider it an achievement.

If you’ve made it a point to follow all of Google’s frequent product updates, you might already be using medal ratings, or you at least know where to find them. Most of you who are familiar with Google Places probably recognize the reviews section. When you visit a business’s Google Places listing, you can leave a review if you’re signed into your Google account and have created a Google Places profile for leaving ratings. You can leave star ratings from 1-5 and you can also include longer reviews if you feel like it.

But you can’t leave a “Best Ever” review from the main listing page (or on your iPhone app). You also can’t leave “Best Ever” reviews by clicking on Google Places in your list of products, because it takes you here:

Because you are trying to leave ratings, not create your own business listing, the best way to access the Google Places dashboard where you can leave “Best Ever” reviews is by going directly to http://www.google.com/places/.  I mean, I could go into using the now technically defunct Google Hotpot, but to keep it simple, just take my advice and memorize the Google Places URL. Or bookmark it.

You should see this screen after going to the main Places URL. Click on the blue “Start rating” button on the left.

After you hit the blue button, you should see this screen. Once you’re here, you can finally start awarding those coveted “Best Ever” medals.

So, the next time you’re getting ready to leave yet another 5 star review for a place that you feel actually deserves a little bit more, remember the medals. And businesses, take note…it’s not quite as easy for someone to leave a “Best Ever” rating, and to make the top 10, services and products should be great, not just good.

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