If you run a small business and aren't taking Apple Maps seriously as a place where people will find your business, you may want to rethink that.
Do you pay attention to your business listing in Apple Maps? Have you seen any indication that it's an important tool for people to find your business? Let us know in the comments.
When Apple first ditched Google Maps on iOS to offer Apple Maps, things went so horribly that CEO Tim Cook actually had to write a public letter of apology to users. This began:
At Apple, we strive to make world-class products that deliver the best experience possible to our customers. With the launch of our new Maps last week, we fell short on this commitment. We are extremely sorry for the frustration this has caused our customers and we are doing everything we can to make Maps better.
Not a great start.
Eventually, Google Maps found its way back onto iOS devices and those who still preferred Google would continue using that. It's not really all that often that we hear much about Apple Maps, but guess what. More iOS users use Apple Maps than use Google Maps, so the joke isn't on Apple after all.
A report that hit BetaBoston.com earlier this month says:
Apple says its mapping service is now used more than three times as often as its next leading competitor on iPhones and iPads, with more than 5 billion map-related requests each week. Research firm comScore says Apple has a modest lead over Google on iPhones in the US, though comScore measures how many people use a service in a given month rather than how often.
Google still dominates among all US smartphones, though, in part because Apple Maps isn’t available on Google’s Android system, which is more prevalent than iPhones. In October, Google Maps had more than twice as many smartphone users as Apple Maps. Much like Apple, Google benefits as the default on Android.
So people are using Google Maps more, but it's a different story when it comes to iPhone. Here's what the operating system market share looks like in the U.S. (courtesy of Nielsen):
The main takeaway here is that you really shouldn't be ignoring Apple Maps.
Apple gets its business listings from a lot of different places, so if you have a business, you’ll probably want to make sure you’re listed appropriately as to not miss out on searches that take pace in Apple’s app.
Local search expert Mike Blumenthal has put together an updated list of data providers Apple is using for business listings. The information comes from Apple’s Map acknowledgements and information from an Apple email.
“With the release of iOS 9 and its increasing foray into local search, it is important to stay on top of who is actually providing business listing data to Apple,” Blumenthal noted in a blog post.
Sources include Acxiom, Booking.com, DAC Group, Factual, GasBuddy/OpenStore, TripAdvisor, Localeze, Yelp, Yext, and many others. Head on over to Blumenthal’s write-up for the full list.
Above all else, this is an important reminder that your local search listings extend well beyond Google. Take the time to make sure your business is represented everywhere possible.
Have you spent the appropriate amount of time going through Apple Maps' data sources and checking the representation of your business? Let us know in the comments.