Google Offers Green Industry Free Coupon Ads

Google Offers Green Industry Free Coupon Ads

Apparently, there is such a thing as a free lunch–at least in Google land. The Internet search goliath is offering nurseries and all other U.S. businesses free coupon advertising on its Google Maps (http://maps.google.com/) site, in an effort to get more businesses to “think Google” for local advertising. Essentially, the coupons pop up on Google Maps when a visitor types in a zip code or town name, along with an industry keyword. A search on Google Maps for “nursery 10001,” for example, brings back links to scores of nurseries in the area. Similar searches for nurseries in other zip codes yield similar results.

A number of nurseries are already offering coupons on the Google Maps system. Plantasia Gardens (www.plantasiagardens.com/nurserycoupon.html), for example, sports a $5 off coupon on Google Maps, as does Puckett’s Nursery (www.allenonline.com/Coupons1/PuckettsNursery-1.html). Ft. Collins Nursery (www.fortcollinsnursery.com/coupon/) is another industry business that offers a $5 off coupon on Google Maps. And Yamagamis Nursery (www.yamagamisnursery.com) offers coupons there from time to time, as well.

“Google’s goal is to connect searchers with the information they need, whether it’s halfway around the world or in their neighborhood,” says Sergey Brin, Google’s co-founder and president. Given Google Maps’ current reach, the company’s offer to host coupons from any U.S. business at no charge is substantial. The site saw 23 million visits from Web users in June 2006 alone. They used Google Maps to get driving directions, generate maps of specific areas, and find businesses located in a particular town or zip code.

Where Are You?

The service also enables users to get additional information on a business–such as the nursery’s phone number, street address, hours of operation, directions to the business, Web and e-mail address, user reviews and similar info–by clicking on business names returned by the search. In practice, creating coupons for Google Maps is a snap.

Businesses simply sign up for a free account at Google Local Business Center (www.google.com/local/add), click on the “Coupons” tab and follow the online prompts to auto-generate coupons from a template in five or 10 minutes. No graphic design skills are necessary. And you don’t have to be a champion wordsmith. If you can keypunch in your business name and a few words about your coupon offer, Google Maps will do the rest for you. Moreover, a business does not even need a Web site to take advantage of the offer, since the Google Maps system auto-generates a company’s coupon anytime a user conducts a search for your type of business in your zip code.

“The coupon creation process is very simple, which suggests businesses will use it,” says Greg Sterling, an analyst with Sterling Market Intelligence, a market research firm that monitors local search advertising. The fact that 70 percent of American households now use the Web as an information source when shopping locally, according to a March 2005 study from the Kelsey Group, may also help convince businesses to take Google up on its offer. For established nurseries already in Google’s database, the coupons generally appear online in about a week or so, after Google calls to confirm that the business has actually in fact posted a coupon to its maps site. Brand new businesses or businesses not on Google’s radar may have to wait up to six weeks to see their coupons online. The reason: Google prefers to verify the existence of these businesses by mailing a postcard to the business address. The card includes a PIN the business can use online to activate their business listing on Google and trigger their coupon to go live.

While all the Google coupons generally take the same format–business name, a short headline describing the offer and a few lines of text offering specifics–companies can upload a small graphic to go with the coupon, such as a business logo or product pictures. Plus, each coupon also comes with its own unique identifier number generated by Google to help prevent coupon fraud.

This latest freebie from Google represents an enhancement of its aggressive strategy to build a comprehensive, easily accessible database of businesses throughout the U.S. and leverage that database to sell local advertising. Back in March 2005, Google first went live with the Google Local Business Center, which offers businesses the ability to get listed for free in Google’s database, as well as update their listing at any time.

Ultimately, Google hopes to profit from its free coupon program by eventually offering businesses the opportunity to feature those coupons on its primary search tool, the Google search engine. Google’s search offers businesses a much broader base of users than Google Maps, and it is already used by thousands of businesses as an advertising tool. In the meantime, the company is courting the business community with a number of other free promotional services, including:

– Google Webmaster Tools (GWT, https://www.google.com/webmasters/sitemaps/docs/en/about.html): Your company’s Web site can rank higher in Google’s search engine returns after you tweak the site’s design with these tools. Specifically, GWT will detail for your Webmaster why certain pages on your site are tougher for Google to track.

GWT will also identify the most popular search terms being used to find your site and allow you to identify and correct any site design “violations” that are preventing the site, or some of its pages, from being listed by Google.

– Google Search for Web Sites (www.google.com/searchcode.html#utm_medium=et&utm_source=bizsols&utm_campaign=searchcodeC): Instead of reinventing the wheel, you can use the same search technology Google uses for its search engine as a search engine for your own site. Price: free.

– Google Base (http://base.google.com/base/help/about.html?hl=en_US): With this service, Google allows your company to post virtually any type of marketing materials, job offers and similar fare to its free, online hosting service. Company PDFs, podcasts, text files and the like can all be uploaded. And each item can be categorized with search terms and attributes that make it easier for your intended audience to find materials.

– Google Analytics (www.google.com/analytics/): This program will enable your Web designer to ensure that every page on your Web site is as user-friendly as possible.

-Google Book Search (http://books.google.com): While this service is primarily designed for publishers, Book Search can also be used by companies offering extensive white papers, educational materials and similar promotional tomes. This Google service offers info-seekers a preview of a few pages of your book, as well as a link to where they can buy the book online.

Leave a Reply

One comment on “Google Offers Green Industry Free Coupon Ads

  1. Todays deal provides free coupons and discounts codes of on line deals to save your money on online purchase. Its is side where you can search and browse more than 15000 free discount codes and coupons of online stores, products and brand of your own choice. Todays deal helps people to save their money on online purchase by availing free discount codes and coupons on our webpage while making online purchase from your favorite online stores and brands. We provide the guide line not only to our regular customers but also to those who are new to online purchase by extending the benefit on your retail order by using discount codes and coupons.http://www.todaysdeal.us 


Latest Stories
bailey-nurseries-team-feature

December 5, 2016

How Bailey Nurseries Has Found Solutions To The Labor S…

A changing seasonal workforce led this Minnesota-based company to explore new labor sources through the H-2A program and refugee organizations, and it’s working out for the better.

Read More
mycoapply-from-mycorrhizal-applications-feature

December 5, 2016

New Growing Media Advancements Giving Growers More Opti…

With innovative, sustainable growing media components, growers will be able to improve plant health, achieve consistency among crops, save money, and reduce inputs, while saving space on storage.

Read More

December 5, 2016

Benary’s Jennifer Calhoun: How We Can Make Plants…

I see one main issue facing our industry in getting more people to buy plants — we assume that the way we used to sell plants is the way millennials will want to buy them. Nothing could be further from the truth. We sell plants in small packs that you plant in a hole in your garden, with a generic label that says “blooms all season.” Millennials don’t have gardens, so they want a plant they can put on their fourth floor apartment balcony, or better yet on a shelf in their living room near a window.  We give them too little information to help them be successful under those circumstances. But what we don’t realize is that if the plant dies, they feel personally responsible for killing another living thing which is so painful that they would prefer not to take the chance a second time. If we sold […]

Read More

December 5, 2016

A Visual Guide To Garden Retail Merchandising

Antje Verstl, a German visual merchandiser who has worked with many high level garden retailers in Europe, has a lot of practical, and inspirational advice on how to transform your plant yard into an exciting place to shop. Take a look at this gallery, and enjoy a visual guide from Verstl. Her book, “Eagle & Frog!,” is now available for purchase by an American market through her website.

Read More
mikaela-hermstedt-penn-state-university

December 4, 2016

Shinoda Foundation Names Penn State Horticulture Major …

Mikaela Hermstedt, a 21-year-old senior from Lincoln, DE, plans to pursue a career in commercial greenhouse production of flowering plants.

Read More
all-america-selections-new-website-home-page

December 3, 2016

New Mobile Responsive Website From All-America Selectio…

All-America Selections has launched a newly redesigned and revamped mobile-responsive website that includes a more attractive design, enhanced search tools, and easier and simpler navigation.

Read More
Sea Breeze Catharanthus combo

December 2, 2016

Four Mixed Container Trends To Watch

Mixed containers are still one of the best-selling SKUs at retail. Pay attention to these four trends that are making their mark on multi-liner mixes and combination containers.

Read More
kelly-norris

December 2, 2016

Kelly Norris: How The “Me Too” Philosophy Affects Plant…

When you’re selling the exact same thing as everyone else, it’s unrealistic to expect customers to buy only from you.

Read More
mcconkey-plastic-shelves-feature

December 1, 2016

How Color Point Is Stopping Cart Theft With Plastic She…

Plastic shelving on carts acts as a deterrent to theft, and employees enjoy the benefits of being able to handle the racks without difficulty or injuries.

Read More
oasis-water-valve-feature

November 30, 2016

How You Can Water Plants Based On Basket Weight

The Oasis from Control Dekk is designed to reduce water use by giving baskets the exact amount of water they need.

Read More

November 29, 2016

How Changes In Plant Patent Law Could Affect Your Varie…

There is an ongoing discussion happening among plant genetics companies about the current laws and ethics of plant breeding, and what the future holds for the improved lawful protection of genetics.

Read More
foxglove-aphid

November 29, 2016

How Greenhouse Growers Can Manage The Foxglove Aphid

Recent research is shedding new light on the foxglove aphid. Understanding host plants, identification, and biology will help growers deal with this pest.

Read More
endless-summer

November 29, 2016

Endless Summer Hydrangeas Will Soon Feature New Identit…

Bailey Nurseries, which first introduced the reblooming hydrangea a decade ago, says the new identity will feature a more contemporary look to appeal to current and future gardeners.

Read More
Trays move on an overhead conveyor to the end of the production line, where workers carefully pack the cleaned, sized, graded, counted and sorted Calla tubers

November 29, 2016

Texas Judge Halts Overtime Rule; Here’s What It Means F…

According to Craig Regelbrugge at AmericanHort, the injunction against the overtime rule is welcome news for horticulture.

Read More

November 29, 2016

How The Industry Is Ensuring Consumer Success With Plan…

Greenhouse Grower RETAILING reached out to growers and suppliers for their ideas on how to attract and keep new plant customers. Here's what they had to say about ensuring gardening success.

Read More

November 29, 2016

Heroes To Hives Seeks Veterans For Beekeeping Training

Michigan State University is bringing together two great causes of our times — supporting vets and boosting pollinators — in its new program aimed at teaching professional beekeeping to former soldiers.

Read More
Silver Bullet Heaters (Heat Star By Enerco) Feature

November 28, 2016

The Latest In Greenhouse Heating And Cooling Products

New developments in heating, cooling, ventilation, and humidity control technology are designed to help you manage your greenhouse environment more efficiently. Check out some of the latest offerings from leading manufacturers.

Read More
prince-tut-cyperus-grass-feature

November 28, 2016

Growing Tips For ‘Prince Tut’ Cyperus Grass

'Prince Tut’ from Proven Winners’ Graceful Grasses collection is versatile, working well in all container sizes with its columnar habit and dense canopy and filling out well in the landscape.

Read More
[gravityform id="35" title="false" description="false"]