UPDATE: Some of my better-read compatriots have pointed me towards Greg Sterling’s article from April about how Google is using the layout below to appease anti-competition complaints in Europe.  So take my theories below as pure entertainment, as it should be. Nick Rink of Smart Local , a UK Local SEO firm, posted a screenshot […]

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Just caught Greg’s piece on Facebook’s new mobile local search feature: Facebook Gets Into Local Search with Facebook Nearby for iOS & Android. While I don’t expect Facebook Nearby to stay ad-free forever, with the entry of Facebook Nearby and Apple Maps, both ad-free, I’d say 2012 has been the most interesting year in the Local […]

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This past February, in  The Non-Place-Place Use Case I posted about how Google was delisting businesses that did not service customers at their locations but had not requested their addresses be hidden on Google Maps.  Mike, Miriam and others chimed in on how lame this was.   Today, I got this email about this “recent” update: Guess […]

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My post on Bizible’s new local search ranking factors study is now up at SearchEngineLand. You can also get more detail on the study and the results on Bizible’s blog. As mentioned in my SEL post, Bizible claims the study is scientifically valid and while in general I liked their approach, I can think of […]

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 On Monday, my SearchEngineLand column will preview the results of a new Google Places Ranking Factors study conducted by Bizible.  Aaron Bird, CEO & Night Janitor of Bizible, approached me a month or two ago about the study and I was intrigued by his approach. The study is a scientific complement to David Mihm’s well-known […]

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Linda Buquet has an interesting read on the recent Google Venice Update, which among other things appears to have boosted local businesses’ ability to rank in the organic, non-Places results: “If my research is right and 75% of searches are for “cityless keywords” then this is a huge opportunity that didn’t exist before – to […]

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A frustrated practitioner of bail bonds SEO laments about Google Places, Where Crooked Businesses Take Over: “Here’s another great example of the wonder of Google Places and Google’s dealings with Local Search. Type in Google, “Santa Clarita Bail Bonds.” (this example could be done for many other keywords if you care to try) You will see […]

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Mike Blumenthal dissects Google Places’ latest redesign: According to Mike: “They include a strong call to action (review, upload photos) and clear sense of priorities as to what is important going forward – even coupons now have a higher visibility – more user generated content, more understanding of your social circles intent and a greater desire, […]

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I haven’t pontificated on last week’s changes that removed most of the third party data from displaying on Google Place Pages – I basically agree with David Mihm’s assessment of the situation – this is an interface update, not an algorithm update. This article by FT.com implies that Google removed 3rd party reviews from Place […]

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Justin Sanger, CEO of JoinHere, an interesting new SMB “Social Engagement Platform”,  puts it thus: “A G+ and G Places integration will create the most powerful discovery, publishing, and social suite the marketplace has seen to date. The G maps algo will undergo more change as content contribution, followers, and +1s begin to affect discovery – […]

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Mike Blumenthal has some concerns re Google Places’ new user review feeds: When was the last time you heard a reviewer ask for an RSS feed of their reviews? Well maybe some reviewer some place did… but then I suggest you follow Google’s instructions and go find it. Instead of attaching it to the obvious place in […]

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