Google tools aid Connecticut economy, study says

A new study released Wednesday by Google says the California-based company’s online tools helped spur $2.71 billion in economic activity for Connecticut businesses in 2016.

The study also found that 15,000 Connecticut businesses, website publishers and nonprofits benefited from using Google’s advertising tools, AdWords and AdSense. Nationwide, Google’s tools helped generate $222 billion of economic activity for 1.5 million businesses, website publishers, and nonprofits in 2016.

AdWords is the technology company’s online advertising service, in which companies pay to display brief advertising copy to Web users. AdSense is Google’s advertising placement service, which is designed for website publishers who want to display targeted text, video or image advertisements on Web pages and earn money when site visitors view or click the ads.

Mary Ellen Coe, president of Google Marketing Solutions, said the study’s findings show that “the Web is working for American businesses.”

“We’re continuously impressed by the extraordinary feats people can accomplish when they have access to information and the tools to put it to use,” Coe said in a statement.

Among the Connecticut businesses benefiting from Google’s online tools is Junzi Kitchen, located at 21 Broadway in New Haven. The restaurant was started by a group of New Haven graduate students — Yong Zhao, Wanting Zhang and Ming Bai — in October 2015.

Reed Immer, the restaurant’s events and communications director, said the restaurant’s management team uses Google Analytics to determine how effective Junzi Kitchen’s website is in attracting customers and telling the story of the business.

“Understanding how users move from our menu page to our about page, which tells the deeper brand story, helps us understand more about the visitors to our website,” Immer said. “The tools really help reinforce that there is customer interest in the back story behind our restaurant, our brand. We’re able to assess how effective different elements of our site are by how long people spend on them.”

The restaurant also uses Google Drive to promote collaborative work between chefs, artists and advisers of the business from around the world.

“Without them, this would all be a dream way off in the future,” Immer said of Google’s online tools and how they have influenced the restaurant’s growth.

Junzi Kitchen has been so successful in New Haven that the restaurant’s owners plan to open two more locations in New York City in 2017 and more than double the current 30-person workforce.

Call Luther Turmelle at 203-680-9388.