Hotpot, is designed to make local search results for places on Google more personal, relevant and trustworthy and also includes a new social element – allowing you to share your reviews and ratings with friends.
There are three main elements to Hotpot:
- Google Places – There are currently more than 50 million places listed around the world.
- Places you like – When you rate places you like, Google may suggest other related places you may like as well. Hotpot will try to recommend other local places which are similar.
- Places your friends like – Share ratings with your friends and see the places they’ve recommended.
Combining these three elements could make the hard task of choosing where to go much easier; all you need is to rate places and add your friends.
Hotpot is also closely integrated with Google Places, with hotpot ratings showing up as reviews on Place Pages. A new “Best Ever” ribbon is starting to show up on some Reviews, and Google Places has also recently added the ability to add this simpler, quick Hotpot like star rating to businesses that show in the Related Places area of the Place page.
To make the most of Local Search and maximise the opportunity for your Places page appearing in search results, why not encourage your friends and clients to rate your business/service.
A Google account is required to use Hotpot, but this is easy to setup and is free. You can set a Places nickname when you start using Hotpot , so you control how you post your ratings. That way, only your friends will be able to see your real name.