Posted on December 29, 2009 by Kevin Getch I got this note from Kathy Stanley of KIDSPACE Child Enrichment Center today. I always enjoy getting thank you notes from my clients, but this thank you note was written on a letter from Google. Google sent them a letter with a window decal like the one below, that tells their customers that they are a favorite place on Google and it also has a QR code, which is a barcode. This barcode can be scanned with most of the newer web enabled phones that have a camera. I tested it for myself, as I have heard some of them have been incorrect, and walla it took me right to their local listing where I could read testimonials, write a review, make it a favorite myself, among many other actions. Google is constantly evolving and improving it’s ability to provide relevant search results to it’s customers… you and me. They have also “supposedly” released their new search algorhitm upgrade dubbed “caffeine” over the holiday season. The favorite places is another way for Google to provide more relevant content as well as increase user interaction with both Google and the business. So, your next questions is… How do I get my business listed as a favorite place on Google Maps? Good Question! Here is a link to the FAQ on Google Favorite Places that may answer some of your questions. Also you cannot request to be included in Googles Favorite Places, they determine if your business meets certain criteria, based on the traffic your local listing receives, user interaction (Direction,more info,etc), as well as a number of other items some speculative, but they seem to work! How selective was Google in selecting the businesses to receive the decal? Over 100,000 businesses were identified as Favorite Places, representing less than 1% of the 28 million U.S. businesses. We believe that our standards for selecting businesses are as selective or more selective than other companies which have run similar initiatives. Is this a one time initiative or will Google continue to send more decals? We may decide to periodically send out more decals to businesses that meet our criteria. We have not determined specific dates for additional mailings.