There has been a lot of hoopla lately around one of the biggest changes in the new IOS 6 operating system. Apple has decided to discontinue using Google Maps, and instead have implemented their own version of a mapping software application. So far, there have been a lot of complaints, and even an apology from Apple’s CEO Tim Cook for launching a mapping app that was clearly not ready for market. There are many stories of businesses disappearing, moving, old and closed businesses re-appearing, and incorrect city references. Imagine if an old competitor a couple of blocks away that has been out of business for a few years is somehow now competing with your business within the Apple Maps search function, or even worse, imagine your business has completely disappeared. I have personally experienced one of these issues while looking for my closest Verizon store (with hilarious results), check out the screenshot below:
iPhones consist of about 36% of Smartphones in the US. That is a lot of potential customers that could be missing out on your business because of Apple’s premature leap into mapping applications. Apple’s data sources, Acxiom and Localeze, have some work to do in cooperation with Apple to update their databases and provide iPhone users with a better experience. These updates will hopefully phase out old information, correctly include all current businesses, and “move” business locations to their actual, correct locations. This is good news for the many business owners that are currently being placed in the middle of a lake or nowhere at all, but many don’t want to wait for the system to catch up. So what can a local business do in the meantime to update information in the Apple Map environment?
- Claim or create a Localeze account with your correct business information.
Localeze can be tricky, especially for larger organizations with multiple locations, but its important to make sure all of your physical locations are correctly listed. This updated information will make sure Apple Maps will know where you are located, but it will take some time for the data to all be processed and rendered properly.
- Ensure that you have a claimed a Yelp account listing.
Apple Maps typically draws just secondary information from Yelp, but there have also been accounts of Apple providing address and other primary information from Yelp accounts. Go to www.yelp.com and update claim/ update your information on the service. Apple Maps is also integrating Yelp reviews, so you may want to check the reviews that are currently on the website and adjust services to reflect some customer suggestions.
Apple is currently hiring more professionals to help fix Maps ASAP, but they are behind, meaning some users may choose not to wait and download different mapping software instead. This leads to another problem for business owners -- with more players in the mapping software business, it can be even more complicated to ensure that your business information is updated and current. This can also be very time consuming for larger organizations with many locations. In these cases, your best bet is to partner with a company that can automate this on your behalf. If you think you may need to implement this service, let us know! Marketing is all about getting your business found, so first make sure you are on the map.