A roundup of today’s big stories in hyperlocal publishing, marketing, commerce, and technology
Inside Google’s Big Plan to Race Amazon To Your Door (Re/Code)
Shopping Express lets shoppers buy things from local retail stores through Google, which then delivers them to consumers from the physical retail store on the same or next day. A source familiar with the company’s plans says senior Google execs have set aside as much as $500 million to expand the service nationwide.
As Home Services Market Heats Up, Handybook CEO Sees Big Opportunity (Street Fight)
Last month, Revolution, the venture firm helmed by Case as well as Groupon chairman Ted Leonisis, led a $30 million investment in Handybook, a company that helps people book housecleaners and other home service providers. Street Fight caught up with Umang Dua, co-founder of HandyBook, to talk about the company’s evolving competitive set and the growing speculation around Uber’s valuation.
Matt Cutts, Google’s Head of Webspam, Is Going on Indefinite Leave — Publishers Likely Won’t Miss Him (PandoDaily)
Matt Cutts, Google’s Head of Webspam, announced on his personal blog that he is taking at least four months of personal leave. Cutts heads the team that, with a single algorithm tweak, can wipe a business off the face of Google search.
Openings and New Hires at MatchCraft, Gannett, bizHive and Google (Street Fight)
Every two weeks, Search Influence’s Kelly Benish — who knows practically everyone in hyperlocal — covers some of the latest job changes taking place in this dynamic industry. In this week’s edition, moves and new openings at Euclid Media Twitter, Ping4, LiveIntent, Hibu and more.
Will Brand Dollars Ever Come to App-Install Ads? (AdAge)
Most industry insiders agree the phenomenal growth of the app-install business will soon peter out. In their latest moves on mobile, Facebook and Twitter are grabbing land and technology in the hopes it paves the way for major brand advertisers to jump aboard the format eventually.
Leave Your Wallet at Home: Lollapalooza Offers Cashless Wristbands (Mashable)
For the first time at a major U.S. music festival, attendees at Lollapalooza will be able to pay for their merchandise, food and drink entirely via their wristbands. The technology will improve security and streamline the festival experience, the organizers say, as well as gather data about buying habits.
Price Check, Please: App Guides Shoppers to Best Nearby Prices for Household Items (New York Times)
StockUp helps users comparison-shop, finding the cheapest pricing on everyday items like groceries and household products. It’s a great concept with a fatal flaw: Many retailers will not give the company direct access to their pricing, so StockUp is relying on crowdsourcing from users. At this point, there’s not enough of a crowd.
Challenges Waiting for Oregonian’s New Editor (Nieman Lab)
Ken Doctor: One of the interesting things about the new Advance model is that it is religiously digital — its orthodoxy, I still believe, overzealous. Yet it does provide some room, within Advance’s management often-prescriptive mandates, for real positive change. With Oregonian publisher Chris Anderson (a molder of the old Orange County Register’s growth as both editor and publisher) and Mark Katches teaming up, this will now become a new, very watchable experiment in multimedia journalism.
People Freaking Out About Startup That Snags Restaurant Reservations and Sells Them (Business Insider)
No one likes waiting in line at a crowded restaurant while watching others with reservations slip right past you. A new startup called ReservationHop, however, lets you snag these reservations for $5 — and people aren’t happy about it.
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