Want to Know How Long the Wait For that Hot New Restaurant Is? There’s a Google Integration for That
Building on the Reserve with Google offerings that have made the tech giant’s SERPs the new homepage of local businesses, Google seems to be adding a feature that allows people searching for local restaurants to sign up for a waitlist. Busy folks with a penchant for busy eateries rejoice.
The feature, made possible by restaurant tech vendor DineTime, appears to be available to select restaurants already using the software provider’s technology. It invites searchers to click a button allowing them to “join waitlist” in the same place on the Reserve with Google interface where “Reserve a Table” is currently widely available. Clicking brings you to a screen indicating the current wait time, prompts you to enter your party size, and then sends you a text to get things going.
The move, a no-brainer for consumers looking for an ever-more convenient way to find local businesses and get where they’re going, is perhaps a more mixed bag for local businesses themselves, which are continually losing control over the digital properties on which they engage potential customers. The news fits nicely, then, into the growing consensus that local SEOs should be sharpening their GMB expertise, not discounting local business websites but rather emphasizing the interplay between Google’s properties and those of SMB clients.
Joe Zappa is Street Fight’s managing editor.