Spend any real time in the small business marketing world and you\u2019ll quickly be inundated with new services, new tools, new updates, new features and new things everyone thinks you should be aware of. As a result, it\u2019s not always easy to decide what truly demands your attention and what can be written off as background noise. For that reason it\u2019s possible that when Google Place Pages was first released a few months ago, you ignored it. And if that\u2019s the case, it\u2019s time to reconsider your position. Last week I had the privilege of attending SMX West in California and one hot topic on the tip of everyone\u2019s tongue was the importance of Google Place Pages and their effect on SMBs. Why should you worry about Google Place Pages? Below are four good reasons. 1. Your customers are looking for you online: While at SMX West last week, Gregg Stewart of 15 Miles noted that 20 percent of all searches on Google now have a local intent, and that number is even higher when you look at searches performed on mobile devices. SEO expert Bruce Clay later predicted that in two years 70-80 percent of queries will have a local result on the page (!). That\u2019s pretty significant and offers a good indication of where things are going. Searchers are headed online to find local businesses and, thanks to personalization, Google is showing local results even when a user doesn\u2019t specifically ask for them. Users are looking for your business online and one of the best ways to help them find you is to claim, optimize and enhance your Google Place Page. By ignoring it, you make it harder for customers to do business with you. Why do that? 2. Google Places acts as a one-stop-shop for your brand: One reason some small business owners aren\u2019t too friendly to Place Pages is that they resent Google decentralizing their information and pulling people from their core site. Unfortunately, that\u2019s exactly why users like these aggregate pages. They like being able to check out one page and see all your vital information. Embrace it and give users what they\u2019re looking for. Because, at the end of the day, it doesn\u2019t matter how a user finds your address and phone number\u2026just that they do and that you\u2019ve excited them enough to use it. 3. Google loves (to rank) Place Pages: Thanks to some Google algorithm changes, Place Pages have been given significant search prominence. That means whether you like them or not, they\u2019re showing up, and potential customers are stumbling upon them. As a savvy business owner, you must do your part and help those searchers find you by completely filling out your Google Place Page. I know it\u2019s a little monotonous to always be filling out those little boxes all over the Web, but you\u2019re being asked for a reason \u2013 Google is using that information to rank you. Fill out everything, be careful when selecting your business category, and include as much information and (keyword-rich) details as you can. The more complete (and keyword-rich) your profile, the better. 4. Google Places connects third-party sites: You know the information being posted about you all over the Web? Much of it is being aggregated and displayed in your Google Place page. That means what\u2019s out there about you for your business \u2013 all the reviews, the associated images, the business information, etc. \u2013 is getting more attention than ever before. If you don\u2019t know what\u2019s out there about your brand, Google Place Pages provides more incentive for you to find out. Take this time to make sure it\u2019s all accurate and consistent. Above are just a few reasons why Google Place Pages are becoming synonymous with local search engine optimization. If you haven\u2019t invested serious time in claiming your Google Place Page listing and optimizing it, run (don\u2019t walk) to go do that right now. This is not an area that you can put on the back burner until you \u201chave time\u201d to tackle it. Google is serious about local search, and your Place Page just may be the glue that brings it all together.