Google plans on mailing around 100,000 window stickers to restaurants, hotels, bars, and other retail entities around the nation during the next two weeks. Each sticker will have a unique scannable barcode that is designed to work with numerous popular mobile phones and help local businesses target on-the-go consumers with promotions such as coupons.
From the user perspective, the phones will need to include a camera feature and have an app that scans barcodes, according to an announcement by the Mountain View, CA-based online giant earlier today. The initiative builds on the brand’s “Favorite Places” program for Google Maps that started last summer, while beginning its first outreach to local businesses in an effort that’s expected to continue into 2010.
A spokesperson for the search site explained the local businesses for this initial run were selected due to having an established account in Google’s “Local Business Center” and producing a high number of clicks on their Google.com and Google Maps listings. Site stats were included in the literature that accompanied the decal-styled stickers, said the spokesperson, as well as “ideas for how to use the ‘Local Business Center’ as a daily tool for running their business, and an overview of why the sticker could be useful to them, and how their potential customers could use them.”