Yelp and YP Enter Into “Strategic” Content, Distribution Partnership

YP + Yelp YP and Yelp have announced a strategic partnership that will in the near future provide YP advertisers with an enhanced presence on Yelp and effectively bring Yelp into the YP Local Ad Network. There is probably a revenue sharing deal in the background but the parties declined to discuss terms. Yelp has existing content deals with Yahoo, Bing, Apple and others. However, this YP deal is quite different than those, which are mainly about the inclusion of Yelp reviews content in local search results. Under the terms of this deal, as I understand them, YP advertisers will gain access to the [...]


Survey: Consumers Blame Brands For Bad Location Data

local-search-map-featured Today at SMX West local data and marketing platform provider Placeable released findings from two related surveys it recently conducted online. The company polled consumers (n=1,000 US adults) and marketers (n=228) to gather data on local search attitudes and behaviors. Marketers were asked to discuss their behavior when they acted as consumers. Overall the marketers (as consumers) were more mobile, more interested in personalization and more active in social sharing and content creation than their "ordinary consumer" peers. Below are some of the more interesting "regular consumer" find [...]


Better Data, Public Transit Coming To Apple Maps In iOS 8

apple-maps-featured According to unnamed sources cited by 9to5mac, Apple's forthcoming iOS 8 will see a number of improvements to its mapping product across platforms. The site says the next Apple mobile OS will offer: Better and more complete points of interest and business data Public transit information and directions (rolling out first to major US cities) Much of the discussion in the article is about subtle changes to the Apple Maps UI or functionality improvements coming with the new OS. Further out, says the report, are indoor maps and augmented reality:  "Apple has also begun work on augmented [...]


YP Wants To Compete Directly With Google And Yelp In Local

YP logo When one looks across the local digital landscape there are many companies and apps but few consumer “brands.” In specific verticals, like travel or automotive, there are companies such as TripAdvisor or Cars.com. But “horizontally” on a national level there are very few top-of-mind, major players. That list starts with Google and Yelp and could include Apple (re maps) and maybe Foursquare and Groupon. Mapquest has faded and Facebook’s local efforts are still what we might call embryonic. The various yellow pages and directory publishers, once dominant in local, have had great [...]


Telenav Thinks Scout Can Take On Google Maps

Skobbler app Last week Telenav acquired Skobbler for roughly $24 million in cash and stock. Skobbler is based in Berlin, Germany and is to OpenStreetMap (OSM) what Red Hat is to Linux according to Ryan Peterson of Telenav. For those not aware, OSM is the Wikipedia of digital mapping. It relies on a global force of over 1.5 million volunteer editors or contributors. Telenav, which got its start in white label navigation and enterprise fleet tracking, is the creator of Scout, a consumer navigation app that Telenav believes is capable of taking on Google Maps. According to Peterson, the Skobbler acquis [...]


5 Tips To Kill The Competition In Local Search

local-search-map-featured If your business has a local presence -- anywhere -- you must take advantage of Google+ Local. Creating and optimizing Google+ Local profiles is a critical marketing practice for local small businesses, multi-location enterprises, national franchises and companies with a single physical location. It will help you reach the 97% of consumers who search for local businesses online. Google+ Local not only helps web searchers find and share local business information, it can also help your business get displayed near the top of Google SERPs. When a search is made with local intent, Google typi [...]


4 Go-Tos To Make Online Reviews Work For Your Business

Yelp profile By now, everyone knows that online reviews can have a tremendous impact on consumers' purchasing decisions. Ultimately, a single review -- positive or negative -- can tip the scale in favor of one company over another. No doubt, the power of reviews on Google+, Yelp, Angie's List and other local search directories continues to mount. Review prominence in search results is also rising, as they often appear for a business just below their company website and make up the majority of the corresponding top 10 search results. Major search and review sites weight online reviews very highly, and [...]


Local SEOs Sound Off On Google+ Local Hijackings

google-plus-local Earlier this week, Danny Sullivan reported on the hijacking of thousands of local hotel listings within Google+ Local. Those listings had been replaced by third-party hotel booking services. And while it's unclear how long those third-party links were in place, several knowledgeable people have surmised it may have been at least a month, if not longer. Without offering any substantive comments about the situation, Google appears to have cleaned up the problem and mostly, if not entirely, restored the proper links. There's been no explanation forthcoming about how this might have happened f [...]


Yelp Turns Up The Heat: 285 Consumer Alerts Issued Over Fake Reviews

yelp-alerts-featured It's been almost a year and a half since Yelp began issuing Consumer Alerts when a business on its site has been caught trying to get fake reviews; but after a cautious start, that program appears to be turning up the heat. According to an interview with CEO Jeremy Stoppelman in The Telegraph, Yelp has now slapped 285 businesses on its website with Consumer Alerts. When Yelp issued its first set of Consumer Alerts in October 2012, only eight local businesses were hit. Then last August, Yelp revealed that it had issued its second round of alerts. No specific numbers were shared, but the c [...]


Bing Ads Express Available To Agencies, Resellers

bing-ads-new-240px As of this week, agencies and resellers can begin offering access to the Bing Ads Express beta to their clients. Launched in early October, Bing Ads Express is an automated platform for small businesses to have a basic presence on Bing Ads. Ads are tied to Bing Places for Business listings, and companies without websites can opt to link the ad to their Facebook page. Agencies and resellers will be able to manage client listings in Bing Places and on the Yahoo Bing Network in bulk with a spreadsheet that can then be uploaded to a Bing Ads Express account. The platform will automatically cla [...]


Maps Roundup: Google Avoids Waze Antitrust Fight, Scout Social Mapping, deCarta Route Patent

google-maps-iphone-icon Google spent just over $1 billion to take Waze away from Facebook, Apple or Nokia and Microsoft. It equally sought the real-time driver feedback that Waze crowd-sourcing provides. Given the size of the transaction the US FTC got immediately involved to bring antitrust scrutiny to the acquisition. Now Bloomberg reports that the FTC is unlikely to block the deal: The Federal Trade Commission hasn’t raised concerns that the transaction might hurt competition, said the people, who asked not to be named because they weren’t authorized to speak publicly about the matter. Google said June 21 [...]


Bing To Include Local Product Inventory In Search Results

bing-shopping-featured Yesterday Microsoft and Local Corporation announced a deal in which the latter's Krillion local product database will be provided to Bing for display in search results. Local Corp. will supply in-stock product data from a range of mostly national-local retailers. The list of participating retailers includes BestBuy, Costco, Express, Fry's, Home Depot, Kmart, Lowe's, Nordstrom, Orchard Supply, Office Depot, Radio Shack, Rite Aid, Sears, Staples, Target, True Value and Wal-Mart. All of the indexed products from these stores -- it's not clear if this includes all in-store inventory -- will be [...]


Yelp Outs More Businesses With Another Batch Of Paid Review Alerts

yelp-alerts-featured Yelp's battle against phony reviews and unacceptable tactics to earn reviews continues today with the company posting another batch of "Consumer Alert" messages on business profile pages. This is the second time Yelp has announced that some businesses will be outed for trying to game its system. Back in October, Yelp put a message on eight business profile pages saying that those companies were "caught ... red-handed trying to buy fake reviews." The alert being posted today is slightly different. It tells consumers that Yelp "caught someone offering up cash, discounts, gift certificates [...]


New CityMaps Hopes To Compete With Social And Editorial Content

Citymaps screen Mobile mapping provider CityMaps recently redesigned its iOS app. It impressively includes home-grown vector maps, built from the ground up. Beyond this CityMaps is trying to offer deeper editorial and social content to differentiate from other mapping and local-search apps. CityMaps also invokes the language of "personal assistant" in its promotional video (below). These concepts are worthy but the execution to support them is, so far, lacking. The original CityMaps app was a kind of crazy quilt of colorful corporate logos that signified business locations. Below are screenshots of the [...]


Report: Building Contractors Number 1 Local Ad Category

YP logo Restaurants is still the most widely searched local business category according to YP's Q2 Local Insights report. However restaurants doesn't even show up in the top 10 when it comes to advertising spend. According to YP data, the following list represents the most searched local categories overall. The list is a blended average of both online and mobile searches. The associated percentage figure reflects search query growth vs. Q1: Restaurants (3%) Physicians & Surgeons (57%) Financial Services (6%) Real Estate (30%) Beauty Services (34%) Auto Parts & Supplies (11%) [...]


The Key To Success In Local Lies In A Vertical Approach

YP Vertical offerings are playing an increasingly critical role, not only in attracting consumers and directing them to relevant local business listings, but also in providing consumers with the necessary tools to evaluate and directly make purchases. As verticals better enable consumers to simplify, speed up, and complete their path to purchase, local businesses need to ensure they have the framework in place to capture these new lead opportunities. Categories Have Always Been Important Over the years, local players have emphasized the importance of category search as a way to improve and q [...]


Will Google’s Expected $1.3 Billion Waze Acquisition Be Allowed?

Waze logo Early yesterday, Israeli business website Globes.co.il said that Google will acquire social mapping app Waze for $1.3 billion. That report has subsequently been all-but-confirmed by others, including the Wall Street Journal (WSJ), which said the announcement could come this week. The WSJ said that by size Waze would constitute Google's fourth largest acquisition, assuming it comes to pass. I argued yesterday on my personal blog Screenwerk that among the range of parties interested in Waze Google needed it least. (Facebook and Apple would benefit far more from it.) Part of Google's mot [...]


Report: Google To Bid For Waze — To Shut It Down?

Waze logo According to a just-published Bloomberg report, Google is preparing a bid for Waze. Earlier this month, rumors indicating Facebook was in late-stage acquisition talks with Waze for roughly $1 billion appeared online. Other parties (Apple, Microsoft) may now also be interested in the social mapping service. According to the Bloomberg report: Waze is fielding expressions of interest from multiple parties and is seeking more than $1 billion, said one of the people, who asked not to be identified because the talks are private. The Palo Alto, California-based startup might also remain independ [...]


Report: Mobile Traffic To Local Sites Growing Faster Than To Total Internet, Now At 27 Percent

Local Search Assn logo The Local Search Association has released a new Local Mobile Search report, which affirms many of the big themes and trends in the market now: PC traffic is flat, mobile is gaining rapidly and mobile is heavily used for local search. The Q4 2012 data in the report are from comScore. And because the data are from Q4, the trends and traffic figures in the report are probably slightly higher now. The data argue that there has been zero-percent growth in PC Internet traffic since 2011. The PC Internet has plateaued (see our Marketing Land story: PC Free: 46% Used Only Mobile Devices In Purchase [...]


Search Takes On Even Greater Role In Foursquare 6.0

foursquare-map-featured This morning, Foursquare is rolling out version 6.0 of its app. It puts a new search box "front and center" at the top of the screen to emphasize the local search capabilities of the app. It also adds or enhances other features to make it easier to find places and things to do. The company is using all its social and check-in data to generate greater utility, as well as create a discovery or recommendations edge over Yelp and Facebook's relatively new Nearby/Local Search. Below is the previous version of the app, which featured tabs at the bottom. Search was available under Explore and v [...]


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