Hotpot the standalone review and recommend service is now being merged with Google Places – a sensible solution I think to enhance the already fabulous Google Places offering.

If you don’t know what HotPot is, its basically a place you can go to review and recommend your favourite places, and you can hook up with friends so that they can see your recommendations and vice versa. Its easy to mark out your favourites so that when you get that ‘where shall we go for dinner’ moment you can always go and look at the past places that you have been and remember why you liked them, or you can check out what your mates think.

Google really are trying to become THE place to go to find out about businesses and reviews, bringing these two together, along with Boost and Maps where is a business owner to start his online marketing!!

and what about the new +1 facility that I spoke about a few weeks ago, could this also have an impact on your Google Places page, it could certainly increase activity and feedback that is for sure.

We do know that 1 in 4 searches are with local intent, and this will only increase as the mobile market picks up… if you’re not up on all of this local marketing then you need to be!