Live chat with local businesses using Google Path
Discover the latest business trend that will create business opportunities for marketers for years to come.
Unlike Kim Kardashian, Google may have actually succeeded in breaking the internet this week with the incorporation of their search results into their Path live chat service.
Google Path has been released as a direct competitor with Path Talk – a live chat service which was marketed and released last September as a means of discovering local small businesses and communicating directly with them – and will now feature top-ranked local and international companies, providing potential customers with more options in terms of connecting directly via live chat.
This development, first spotted by Matt Gibstein, promises to change the way in which consumers interact with their suppliers. Although Path Talk enables users to connect directly with local businesses via text and other media, Google Path promises the benefits of search engine results, providing users with targeted results based on terms they search for.
Although this is only an experimental test run, it promises to be extremely profitable both for large businesses and for Google, making it likely to continue as a trend moving forward.
This news is a serious blow for small business owners since (in all likelihood) it cuts them out of search results and keywords they share with large, multi-national businesses. This is primarily due to the enormous marketing budgets that multi-million dollar organizations can afford compared to their start-up competitors. Scale also plays a factor, as the effectiveness of live chat is directly correlative to how many employees can handle live conversations – a business with 5 employees will struggle against one with 5,000.
Live chat communication with businesses promises to change the way the marketing game is played. Gone are the days of “market fishing” where companies cast an advertising line hoping to catch customers. Now individual business owners will have the ability to sell themselves online as if they were in a global marketplace. The ability to reach targeted clients who are specifically searching for your business is a powerful sales option for businesses and this latest development from Google is likely to strengthen the grip of international businesses on consumers.
Given recent developments with Google surrounding their apparent loss of a major search engine platform in Apple, it is not surprising that the search engine giant would be seeking new ways to enrapture clients to their brand. Only time will tell if their efforts will succeed.
There is no guarantee that this feature will become a full-fledged offering from Google, but the potential advertising profits suggest that it is here to stay.