Apple Maps may have overtaken Google Maps in navigation a long time ago, but there’s still work to be done on the information side. To better compete with Google’s massive database of business information, Apple has announced a new service.
Apple has released a free tool, “Apple Business Connect,” which allows businesses to add photos, facts, and even limited-time offers to the information card provided by Apple Maps, Messages, Wallet, Siri, and other services. These cards are seen by billions of consumers and help these companies attract customers.
It seems like a win-win solution for consumers and businesses. While some of these elements were already in place for some business partners in the past, Business Connect will invite all small businesses to join.
Existing businesses that are part of Apple Business Connect can request their information card, verify by phone, and then update information such as store hours and front door location, invite customers to make reservations or order food directly from Plans, and offer customers special discounts.
- Showcases: Businesses can now offer customers offers and incentives such as seasonal menus, product discounts, and more with the new showcase feature in the business card. Businesses using Business Connect can now quickly edit the store section of their location map
- Provide useful information to customers: Provide useful information to users by highlighting actions they can take directly from the Maps business card, such as placing an Instacart grocery order, booking a hotel through Booking.com, reserving a table at a OpenTable restaurant and more. all with just a tap.
Sign up for Business Connect on the self-service website, business owners can use their current Apple ID or create a new one. After logging in and having their business confirmed by Apple, businesses can claim their location(s) and update and customize their business card for free.
Business Connect API
With the Business Connect API, companies in multiple locations can now deliver accurate, up-to-date information to subscriptions at scale using list management services such as Reputation, Rio SEO, SOCi, Uberall, and Yext.
Small businesses have the same access and ability to personalize their digital presence as major brandsaccording to the company that designed Business Connect with them in mind.
Adding Business Connect to other Apple services, such as Tap to Pay on iPhone, which allows businesses to securely and easily accept Apple Pay, contactless credit and debit cards, and other digital wallets with a simple tap on iPhone, helps small businesses grow and reach more customers.
Business Connects storefronts are now available to businesses in the United States and the United States will be for companies around the world in the coming months.
Speaking of Apple Business Connect, Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president of services, said:
We created Business Connect to provide Apple users around the world with the most accurate information about where to eat, shop, travel and more. Apple Business Connect gives all business owners the tools they need to connect more directly with their customers and gain more control over how billions of people see and use their products and services every day.