Street Fight Daily: Angie’s List CEO To Exit, RetailNext Raises $125M

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A roundup of today’s big stories in hyperlocal publishing, marketing, commerce, and technology…

William Oesterle, Chief Executive of Angie’s List, to Step Down (New York Times)
Just a few weeks after leading business opposition against a controversial religious freedom law in Indiana, William S. Oesterle is stepping down as the chief executive of Angie’s List, in part to become more “civically involved” in the state’s issues, the Indianapolis-based company announced on Wednesday.

Google’s Cities Initiative and the Ownership of Local Data (Street Fight)
Damian Rollison: Google’s recent announcement of a new initiative called “Let’s Put Our Cities on the Map” belongs to the larger story of the company’s attempt to gain a critical mass of participation from small businesses.

RetailNext Bags $125 Million for International Expansion, Acquisitions (Wall Street Journal)
RetailNext has secured a $125 million growth round to expand internationally, acquire competitors and develop a predictive analytics feature to inform retailers when to change staffing, displays, promotions and other items. The company boasted a $50 million annual revenue run rate at the end of 2014.

Here’s What Small Businesses Really Want From Marketing Tech (Street Fight)
Small businesses will spend over $50 billion on local media in 2015, accounting for one of every three dollars spent in local advertising. Street Fight recently caught up with Molly Day of the National Small Business Association to talk about small business owners’ still-mixed relationship with the tech industry and what they are looking for in marketing products.

Local “Near Me” Searches on Google Surged 34 Times (USA Today)
When it comes to search, consumers are thinking local. Google released data Wednesday showing that “near me” searches have surged 34 times since 2011, and have nearly doubled since last year. Not surprisingly, the vast majority of these local searches—80% in the fourth quarter of 2014—come from mobile devices.

Sponsored Post: Using Analytics to Optimize a PPC Campaign (Street Fight)
When it comes to uncovering the real value behind a pay-per-call campaign, analytics are key. Performance analytics provide the types of holistic insights that marketers need to determine what is working about their PPC campaigns — and what isn’t.

Yahoo Not in Talks to Acquire Foursquare (CNBC)
Yahoo is not in talks to acquire Foursquare, the location-based social “check-in” app, at this time, sources told CNBC Wednesday. A previous report by TechCrunch hinted at a possible deal to the tune of $900 million, citing unnamed sources early Wednesday morning. Nevertheless, this rumor has no truth to it, CNBC’s David Faber said on “Squawk on the Street.”

Google, Yelp Executives Spar on Traffic Stats, Antitrust Complaint (Wall Street Journal)
Executives of Google and Yelp engaged in an unusual online debate Wednesday over the extent of Yelp’s reliance on Google, as European officials charged Google with violating antitrust law. The exchange began when Google General Counsel Kent Walker, in a note to employees, said more than 40% of visitors to Yelp, a local-guide site, come directly through its mobile app.

Survey: Small Businesses Want Marketing-Automation Software (AdAge)
Nearly all (98%) of small-business software buyers are shopping for marketing-automation software for the first time, according to a new report by research firm Software Advice, a division of Gartner. The survey found that 47% of small-business buyers are still using manual methods to manage their marketing activities.

How Google, Apple, and Amazon Could Destroy Yelp (Business Insider)
Yelp’s growth is deteriorating and Google, Apple, and Amazon are to blame, say analysts at Pacific Crest Securities. Google will push a gigantic update to its search-results algorithm that will favor mobile-friendly websites. Unfortunately for Yelp and other sites, Google isn’t giving sites specific info about whether they’ll be affected.

Dining Out Surpasses Grocery Sales, Here’s Why (CNBC)
Americans are spending more money dining out than in grocery stores for the first time since 1992, and the shift is all about demographics. The new data, released by the Commerce Department on Tuesday, shows food services and drinking places took in about $50.4 billion in March, compared with $50 billion spent in grocery stores.

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