Apple Maps sources its business data from various sources like Yelp and TripAdvisor. Unfortunately, there was no way to add a business. So, the next best thing was to get listed on third-party review sites. All that changes with the rollout of the Apple Maps ratings and review system, which allows you to add your business and manage your listing.
Image courtesy of macrumors.com
Apple introduced a new way for users to upload photos and review places of interest in iOS 14 and macOS 11. This feature, though, was initially only available in some countries in Europe, Asia and Latin America. Then, in April 2021, Apple finally launched the native Apple Maps review platform in the USA as part of iOS 14.5.
Image courtesy of imapping.com
When it comes to monthly users worldwide, Google Maps leads the pack with 154.4 million, while Apple Maps lags far behind with only 23.3 million.
Despite having fewer monthly users, businesses must not underestimate the potential of a local business listing in Apple Maps. There are presumably half a billion Siri users, and any company pulled up is exclusively from Apple Maps.
For local businesses, the Apple Maps review platform presents an exciting opportunity to be found by more customers.
But before we jump into how they can help grow your business, let first take a look at how reviews and ratings on Apple Maps work so you can start leveraging its full potential.
How Apple Maps Reviews and Ratings Work
Rating places on Apple Maps is a piece of cake. Simply locate a business, then tap on thumbs up or down.
On iOS 14, the thumbs up and down icons are next to the “Recommend this place” label.
Image courtesy of macrumors.com
On iOS 15, the thumbs up and down icons are beneath the “Directions” button.
Image courtesy of iphonetricks.org
Depending on the type of business, users may need to thumbs up or down a secondary screen that presents attributes such as overall experience, customer service and others.
A thumbs up or down rating is reminiscent of star ratings on eCommerce and review sites. But Apple has improved this rating system, providing up to 56 nuances by including up to three attributes. As a result, users have a better insight into what they can expect from a place.
The new Apple Maps update now also lets users add photos. To do that, tap on the plus icon and choose an image from the Photos gallery.
Unfortunately, Apple Maps does not let users leave business reviews. It continues to pull customer feedback from third-party sites, so there is little online review management functionality.
Thus far, the Apple Maps review platform only works in a few countries. Until this feature becomes available, businesses in international markets cannot use it for local SEO.
What Are Apple Business Register and Apple Places on Maps?
Listing your business on Apple Maps begins with Apple Business Register and Apple Places on Maps.
The Apple Business Register is a local listing management portal where digital marketing agencies, SEO agencies, brand managers and owners can control how their business would appear in the entire Apple ecosystem. It is Apple’s answer to Google My Business (now renamed to Google Business Profile) and Microsoft Bing Connect.
The information you provided syncs across Apple apps and services, including Safari, Siri, Maps, Spotlight and Wallet. Furthermore, it allows a local business listing to integrate with services such as App Clips and Business Chat.
The Apple Places on Maps, which replaced Apple Maps Connect, lets users add or update a local business listing.
How To Add Your Business to Apple Maps Quickly in Three Steps
You can add your business to Apple Maps in only three steps, which only takes a few minutes, and begin local listing management.
Step 1. Sign In or Create an Apple ID
You need an Apple ID to add your business to Apple Maps. If you do not have one, click this link to create a new ID. Registration takes only a couple of minutes and is free of charge. If there are any issues, contact Apple customer service.
Step 2. Claim or Add Your Business on Places on Maps
Click on this link to open Places on Maps.
Search for your business. If listed, there will be an option to “claim.”
If your business does not appear on the search, click “Add a missing place” to manually enter your business information.
Step 3. Claim and Verify Your Business
If you claimed or added a new business on Places on Maps, Apple will ask you to sign in with your Apple ID and take you to Apple Business Register.
Apple will also verify if you claimed a business. Usually, they would initiate an automated call to the phone number found in the local business listing. On the call, you will receive a four-digit access code that you enter on Apple Business Register to verify your claim.
How To Edit or Update Your Business Easily on Apple Business Register
After successfully claiming or adding a business, you can edit or update your listing(s). Then, head over and sign in to Apple Business Register.
Choose the business you wish to edit or update from the list of places. The information that you can change are:
- Display name
- Business location, address and status
- Company website address
- Primary phone number
How Apple Maps Reviews Help You Gain More Customers To Grow Your Business
Online review management is essential to maintaining a positive brand image. With Apple Maps joining a growing number of review sites, users can quickly thumbs up or down your business. Although they cannot leave business reviews directly at this time, it will be in the future.
Knowing how to add your business to Apple Maps, therefore, lets you track your Apple Maps ratings and respond accordingly.
Here are other reasons you need to add your business to Apple Maps:
1. Huge Source of Potential Customers
Apple CEO Tim Cook said there are 1.8 billion active Apple devices. In some estimates, more than half use Apple Maps monthly. So, listing your company in Apple Maps lets you gain exposure in traditional and voice searches.
2. Enhance Local SEO To Connect With Nearby Customers
Often, search engines show businesses and brands from nearby. For this reason, more companies are investing in local SEO as part of their digital marketing. By adding your business, anyone searching for a local product or service will find you.
3. Ensure Your Business Listing Is Accurate
Apple lets you control your business’s appearance in Maps and other services. If there are changes like phone numbers, you can easily update them. So you are not going to lose customers because of some outdated information.
4. Communicate With Customers
Apple is still experimenting with Business Chat. Once fully functional, you can communicate directly with customers through Apple Maps. This feature lets you answer questions and persuade customers to buy.
Since the ability to engage or reply to business reviews and customer feedback is limited, chatting with them live is a chance for you to deliver Apple customer service quality engagements, which is an excellent addition to your online review management strategy.
5. Gain a Competitive Edge
While everyone else is too focused on the Google ecosystem, there are many potential customers in the Apple ecosystem too. By starting early, you can be one of the first in your field or industry to make a strong presence on Apple Maps in your location.
Get Started on Apple Maps Ratings
In summary, Places on Maps is for adding or claiming a business, while Apple Business Register is for local listing management. Once complete, your business should begin appearing in local searches within the Apple ecosystem. In the best-case scenario, the additional exposure can significantly increase your customers and sales.
Once Apple completes the integration of Business chat, you can provide the same quality of Apple customer service by answering customer queries in real time. It is a great way to forge a strong customer relationship besides closing sales or upselling.
For more information on how to gain a competitive edge by listing your business in Apple Maps, call 843-353-6383 or contact us for a free consultation. Our online reputation management team can discuss how to gather customer feedback and reviews and improve your Apple Maps ratings.