Damian Rollison | Street Fight

Streets Ahead

Recent Studies Show Mobile’s Broadening Reach

No Comments 17 April 2014 by

The reports underline what we might call the inherently local nature of mobile search. Whether you are in a store contemplating a high-ticket purchase or downtown hoping to discover a new restaurant, the phone in your hand is your portal to timely and actionable information as well as marketing incentives that are increasingly likely to gain your attention...

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Streets Ahead

The Shifting Line Between Free and Paid Local Marketing Services

No Comments 26 March 2014 by

The manipulation of organic reach on Facebook is one of many examples of the shifting boundary between free and paid local marketing services. In “pure” local search, that boundary has tended to be relatively clear: look for a local business in your typical IYP and you’ll see sponsored listings at the top of the results page, followed by organic results. But that boundary is likely more clear to those of us who know what to look for than it is to the general user...

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Streets Ahead

New Location-Based Services Are Poised to Enter the Mainstream

No Comments 05 March 2014 by

To a surprising degree, the panels and presenters at Street Fight’s Local Data Summit last week in Denver emphasized a similar theme: we’re about to see a plethora of new technology-enhanced real-life experiences centering on ingenious uses of data. The signal feature this time around is an orientation toward experiences situated in a physical context. The question the new technologies will answer is this: “What do I need my technology to do for me now, in this place, at this time, under these circumstances?”

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As Google Updates Places, Could Some Merchants Find Their Listings Deleted?

1 Comment 12 February 2014 by

Local SEO consultants and service providers offer businesses the peace of mind that comes with knowing someone is watching the forums and industry news in order to act on policy changes and new developments quickly. Given the complexity of local SEO and the fast pace of change, it’s unreasonable to place the onus for listing management solely on the small business owner...

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Streets Ahead

Let’s Simplify and Strengthen Business Listing Verification

No Comments 22 January 2014 by

Verification is a great idea in theory and, once you navigate the tangled process, it even works well for most business owners in practice. However, there is very little consistency across publishers as to how the process should work or what the result should be, and there is plenty of evidence that the supposed lockdown of business data via owner verification doesn’t always operate as it should...

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Streets Ahead

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Google’s Local Social Conundrum

1 Comment 02 January 2014 by

Google’s attempt at ushering in the Facebook-ization of search, local and otherwise, depends on a major shift in perception and engagement. It may be difficult to bring about such a shift with a “build it and they will come” approach — given the current volume of content, the emphasis on social turns Google's rich local result set into a desert.

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Streets Ahead

local12

When Big Platforms Go Local

No Comments 11 December 2013 by

Though Amazon's plan to have drone delivery by the end of the decade may seem far-fetched, it speaks vividly to the notion that large online platforms are working hard to localize their inventories, and even to redefine what “local” means...

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Finding the Balance Between Relevance and Reach in SMB Content

No Comments 20 November 2013 by

It’s simple enough to say that creating great content or a great platform should be enough to bring users to your door; but if they have no idea you exist, getting the word out effectively is both a matter of reaching your intended user base and staying within the confines of an algorithmically defined concept of quality content. For small and medium-sized businesses, the challenge is to be present and available to customers and potential customers in multiple online venues in a way that conserves effort while remaining effective...

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fingers

Do Small Businesses Really Need a Website?

3 Comments 30 October 2013 by

The website is the richest online repository of compelling information about a business, but it probably isn’t its primary means of attracting customers. Rather, customers who find you via Google Maps or Facebook may need to refer to your website in the event a third party search doesn’t provide enough information to make a buying decision. The website serves as a last stage effort to win business that hasn’t already been secured via local search...

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data

The Government Shutdown and the Local Data Economy

5 Comments 15 October 2013 by

For the most part, local search appears to demonstrate with flying colors the benefits of getting things done in the private sector. Not only is it a self-sustaining and profitable industry; it exhibits a drive to innovate that brings ever-improving services to our desktops and handheld devices at a dizzying pace. Imagine if local directories and apps were run by the same bureaucracy that manages the Postal Service, the IRS, and the Census Bureau. We’d probably still be using phone books. Yet at a fundamental level, governmental authorities still act as objective reference points when it comes to information of interest to the public...

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