As a small business owner running a local business there is much to be gained from making use of free services such as Google Places. This services literally puts your business on the map (the Google map that is) when people search for products and services like yours in your area. Great, right? If you have a candle shop in your city and someone searches for candles in your town, if you have signed up for Google Places, there is a very good chance your business will show up right on the map at the top of the search results page.As search engines produce more and more specific and local search results to their users the small business owner had better be on board. Gone are the days when the phone book was the main source of new customers. Online is where it’s at when it comes to your potential customers finding you.Taking it a step further Google has introduced two new services that are perfect for getting more attention for your location. The first of these is called Google Boost and allows you to create ads right from within your free Google Places business listing. These ads may appear in not only the Google mapping search results but in the general sponsored search results as well. These ads will be specific to your business and display when search related to your business, business type, location, and so on are preformed.Google Tags is an additional layer of exposure that is applied to Google Maps. This is a fee based service that is a simple flat rate per month. With the Tags service you have the ability to really make your business listing stand out in the Google Map search results. On your places listing a small yet highly visible yellow tag appears on the text portion and on the map portion of the results. The ability for a small business owner to really make their listing stand out for a very affordable fixed monthly rate ($25!) is simply too good to pass up.As you get more involved with your business website and online presence take some time to really understand what is available to you. Services like Google Places, Tags and Boost offer some free and very affordable online advertising that can really benefit your small business bottom line.