June 29, 2015 at 6:34 am #19265
Since May of 2012 when Google’s Mobile search presentation “inadvertantly removed the review button” from the browser results it has been very, very difficult to find a URL that would allow for reviews to be left on mobile. There had been the hack that allowed a review to be written via a G+ search on a mobile browser but otherwise it required the use of Google Maps on Android and iPhone.
About a month ago we saw an update that allowed reviews to be written via the browser on Android 5 (Lollipop). And about two weeks ago that feature was pushed to Android 4 (Jellybean, still the most common Android version),
This weekend, after just presenting these factoids at a Local U conference and declaring that iPhone Google reviews were a pita, Google pushed an update that now allows a review to be written on iOS mobile browsers Safari and Chrome. Interestingly this feature has not yet arrived on the Google Now App/browser for the iPhone although given the trend I suspect that will occur shortly.
Getting a user to the correct place to leave a review is, by default, somewhat arcane. You need to provide a link to a brand search that brings up the mobile Local One Box, the user then needs to select the “more button”, scroll at least two screens down and know that the greyed out stars need to be tapped to start the review process. Interestingly Google once again allows rating only in this scenario.
A better way is to get the user directly to the review input screen. Fortunately that is once again possible. The modifier that used to work to open the write a review box, “?hl=en&review=1”, stopped working about a month ago.
To get the user directly to the review box for input
-Using Chrome on your desktop get the one box on the client
-Click on write a review link.
-You will se a URL appear that looks like: https://www.google.com/?gws_rd=ssl#q=barbara+oliver+5820+Main+St++Williamsville+NY&lrd=0x89d37487dfb1ea75:0x2daea2d3b6aa10c7,2
-Copy it and shorten if desired.
This URL will now work on desktop, Android 4, Android 5 and iOS Safari and iOS Chrome.
For those of you that are interested in more details about the URL, it is interesting to compare to the MapMaker URL for a given listing.
What you see in the final working URL for the location is that Google adds “,2” to the FID and the search query. It is then called an LRD.
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