Google Inc. has just acquired the worlds leading provider of survey-based restaurant-reviews, Zagat.
In other words, Google now has direct access to opinions and ratings of over 350,000 Zagat surveyors from around the globe. This deal is sure to bolster Google’s newly launched daily deal service, Google Offers, and guarantee the Internet Giant a share of revenue from local businesses.
In the official announcement, Marissa Mayer, VP, Local, Maps and Location Services posted
With Zagat, we gain a world-class team that has more experience in consumer based-surveys, recommendations and reviews than anyone else in the industry. Founded by Tim and Nina Zagat more than 32 years ago, Zagat has established a trusted and well-loved brand the world over, operating in 13 categories and more than 100 cities. The Zagats have demonstrated their ability to innovate and to do so with tremendous insight. Their surveys may be one of the earliest forms of UGC (user-generated content)—gathering restaurant recommendations from friends, computing and distributing ratings before the Internet as we know it today even existed. Their iconic pocket-sized guides with paragraphs summarizing and “snippeting” sentiment were “mobile” before “mobile” involved electronics. Today, Zagat provides people with a democratized, authentic and comprehensive view of where to eat, drink, stay, shop and play worldwide based on millions of reviews and ratings.
With a shared value in user-generated content, both companies hope that the combination of assets and capabilities of Zagat and Google will lead to advanced innovations in the ways consumers can express their opinions and make informed decisions about where to eat, shop and travel.
More details can also be found on Google’s Commerce Blog.